Workplace requirements have been shaken up in the past two years – but have office fit-outs evolved in line with the new normal?
Most UK offices were shuttered for significant periods in 2020 and 2021, offering a once-in-a-generation opportunity for businesses to assess and update their physical workspaces.
Yet despite the break in normal working patterns, covid-19 is not fundamentally changing office design. Home-working, hybrid models, hub-and-spoke offices, “resimercial” design – all of these concepts were in existence long before 2020. The pandemic has merely acted as a catalyst for their growth, propelling them from trends to established norms.
What has changed is employee expectations of what constitutes a good, healthy, productive workplace. The balance of power has shifted towards the employees, and their needs are now influencing office design just as much as, if not more, than their employers. Working three days at home and two days in the office is no longer a benefit or a flexible working arrangement that must be earned or negotiated. Instead, it is an expectation. This is set to continue.
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