The pandemic has taken the world by storm. The impact of COVID-19 has created a significant shift in the way we live but also in the way we work, with business operations across the nation being restructured. The pandemic has forced many enterprises to swiftly adapt and rethink their decisions. COVID-19 has brought about the recalibration of business strategies, and now, businesses are in the process of adapting to the ‘new normal’.
Now more than ever, COVID-19 has placed great emphasis on anticipating future needs. With fixed costs arising from real estate leases and expenses, businesses of all sizes have turned to upholding operational and cost efficiency and moving from traditional business models to an asset-light model. Along with the unpredictability and speed at which the environment is changing, pivoting to space-as-a-service providers such as WeWork can prove to be an informed long-term strategy for businesses.
By moving away from fixed workspace expenditures and reallocating budgets to other key priorities, businesses can stay afloat. Here are four reasons why flexible workspaces are a practical choice as companies rise up to face the new normal:
Supporting business continuity efforts
Business continuity plans are critical for riding out a crisis, specifically from a workspace perspective to instill confidence in business operations. The COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced physical workspaces as essential in times of disruptive events for continuity of business operations. Beyond fostering collaboration and productivity, a flexible workspace’s role is also to help its members drive business efficiency—offering flexible services, tools, and strategy that can help businesses be well-equipped and prepared for future crises.
Many enterprise members have a global presence through WeWork. This is why most of its members have been turning to them for guidance to navigate the evolving situation. Proactive conversations have been happening among members and non-members to better understand the importance of space-as-a-service as part of their business continuity planning strategy. This also illustrates how the solutions provided by co-working spaces, like WeWork, are deemed crucial and part of their future-proofing strategies. The new work order is indeed upon us and there is no going back to the way it was.
The task for businesses is to adapt both efficiently and effectively as industries move towards recovery. Illustrating how WeWork’s core product and value proposition continue to be in demand, enterprise accounted for more than 50 percent of WeWork’s core revenue for the first time in Q2 2020.
Adding flexibility to businesses
COVID-19’s impact on the economy has shown the need for organisations to take a conservative approach when it comes to operational needs such as lease flexibility.
As more companies look to adopt asset-light models that enable adaptability and agility, employees and the larger community also look to benefit from the flexibility of on-demand workspaces, accessibility and usage on the go from anywhere for any amount of time, without being tied into long term leases. These options allow for both short term and long terms leases with customizable options for businesses and employees. Asset light models allow for distributed workspaces catering to employee and customer proximity and accessibility. This ease of access is provided across the nation and grants unbeatable options for the community and adaptability to changing market needs.
In an increasingly fluid environment, this gives enterprises of all sizes the ability to scale the amount of space dependent on their needs. During this period, businesses have to make quick operational decisions and WeWork’s ability enables them to scale 3x faster than traditional options. By bringing agility to their portfolio with flexible terms and innovative deal structures, some businesses have also saved up to 50 percent of committed costs.
This also points to growing trends amongst larger enterprises, where many are quickly innovating their real estate strategies and forging strong partnerships with flexible workspaces.
Empowering sustainable work arrangements
The shift to remote working during the pandemic has proved that there are alternative and flexible workspace arrangements to creating a productive work environment. This type of working scheme also brings questions of sustainability in the long run. Employers need to take into consideration employees’ work resources, productivity, and mental well-being. On the contrary, many leaders have addressed the importance of physical workspace: how in-person interaction matters for innovation, relationships, culture, and more.
In this new normal, companies will continue to look at alternative workspaces. As distancing shapes the new work order, WeWork is able to partner with companies to deliver hybrid flexible workspace arrangements.
Signing up for a flexible workspace or office can help address these concerns for your employees. Along with new demands of the workforce today, WeWork’s space provides your team with the needed essentials to increase efficiency and productivity.
A sense of community
Flexible workspaces come with the built-in benefit of a diverse community, opening up opportunities for employers to preserve company culture, employee integration and experience which essentially drives productivity, builds motivation and forges connections. Most enterprises, individuals included, find that shared spaces increase their connections, expand their businesses, create jobs, and stimulate the economy. Even as India remains in staggered lockdown conditions, WeWork still keeps its community connected. In this new reality, community elements are redefined by engagements through webinars and sessions with business leaders or members online to sustain the continuous exchange of ideas.
WeWork continues to redefine the future of work for more productive office environments reflective of the new normal. This is done by revamping its products, design, and services to meet members’ new expectations from professional distancing to cleanliness standards. By implementing a renewed workplace standard across its locations, members are ensured of a smooth transition back to the workplace. All these were done while maintaining its strengths as a partner of choice for turnkey, thoughtful, and diverse space solutions. With a decade of expertise, WeWork will be able to pivot to what their partners’ need to face the new normal head-on.
(Source: CNBC TV18)