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Are UK offices no longer fit for purpose?

06 May 2021
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measuring social distance is the office fit for purposeWhen Covid-restrictions ease, millions of people will be returning to offices no longer fit for purpose. But is it time to throw out the traditional office blueprint – rows of desks with people glued to their keyboards, email and landlines (picture David Brent’s colleagues in the TV show ‘The Office’)?

What we need from offices is human connectivity – a space for the kind of work we can’t do by ourselves when working remotely.

This event will explore the subject in more detail and Business Leader has teamed up with law firm Harrison Clark Rickerbys to deliver it. The firm recently produced some research which found the below points – all of which will be discussed during the debate.

  • Nine in ten people (91%) say that people like or love working from home and almost three quarters (72%) of them hope to continue working from home more frequently than they used to
  • But close to half (44%) of people said they miss the office atmosphere and the people
  • Employers are also worried about the downsides of remote working – reservations cited by employers include themes around data security, the challenges of working collaboratively, and reduced productivity
  • And when they are in the office, most people want their own desk, but with fewer people in the building every day, employers can reduce overheads with less desk capacity.

Clearly, there’s more to future workspace planning than installing hand sanitiser and perspex screens.

Who will be on the panel?

• Mark Carter: Partner, Real Estate, Harrison Clark Rickerbys
• Lucy Cohen: co-founder, Mazuma Accountants
• Charmaine Vincent: CEO, Baltimore Consulting
• Nick Wright: founder, Fans for Brands
• Paul Williams: Director, Avison Young

The rest of the panel will be announced shortly.

Join us to debate whether UK offices are no longer fit for purpose. What needs to change when it comes to office interiors; how can we better use technology to boost productive working; and how should our offices foster collaboration? What will happen to our offices – will they lay empty for years to come? And most importantly, how can employers adapt to get the best out of their people when they come back together?

Watch the event live on our website, LinkedInTwitter or Facebook pages.

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