However, despite a growing demand for flexible working practices amongst employees, they report missing the camaraderie and buzz of an office environment.In a Deloitte poll of 4,000 US workers, 48% of those that were either past or present freelancers reported being “very satisfied” with the experience. The remainder cited a feeling of isolation, even loneliness as a significant factor in their dissatisfaction. These thoughts will likely be similar for UK workers. Just as technology has liberated us to go solo, it can also bring us together. A step on from today’s conference calls, VR meetings of the future will become a core aspect of the “digital workplace”. However, as advanced as this sounds, it can never replace the body language, social nuances and ideas-generation of face-to-face interactions. In fact, evidence exists to suggest that trust and effective teams are built primarily through the interpersonal communications that arise from a collaborative and attractive working environment. A shared physical workspace can answer a serious problem that arises from the gig economy: how to foster a company culture and vision. While the gig economy may be acting as a catalyst for a shift away from traditional office working, it has also fuelled the rise of flexible and serviced offices. Serviced office take-up across the UK increased by 176% in the first half of 2017, with central London increasing by186%, according to Savills.
Flexible office demand across UK regional cities such as Manchester and Birmingham doubled. The critical factor for employers, employees and workspace providers alike is flexibility.Serviced offices are perfectly positioned to meet the needs of the next generation of worker. We remain committed to the agility and innovation required to evolve our buildings for workforce 2.0 by developing the best possible spaces, terms and amenities for the next generation. Simon Eastlake is developments director at Office Space in Town.
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