Agile working driving structural change in New Zealand commercial property

Agile working driving structural change in New Zealand commercial property

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Technological developments and agile working methodologies are driving significant, structural changes in the requirements for commercial property in New Zealand, according to new research from CBRE. One of these structural shifts is the rise in agile working, which has profound implications for the way office space is used. Unassigned seating is just one aspect of a truly agile business. Activity based working, third party space, coworking and flexibility around the way office space is used and leased are other real estate parts of a wider transformation into an agile organisation.

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Flexible working and the rise of coworking reducing demand for London office space

Flexible working and the rise of coworking reducing demand for London office space

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The number of new office buildings constructed since the financial crisis in 2008 has fallen in a year on year comparison by 56 percent, according to an analysis of planning applications carried out by property lending platform Lendy. The authors claim that the primary reason for the sharp decrease has been the greater uptake of flexible working and coworking models of space use. According to the study, only 2,300 applications to build new office buildings were approved last year, down from 5,200 in 2007/8. Lendy adds that applications to build new offices have also fallen since the financial crisis – down 58 percent to 2,500 last year from 6,000 in 2007/08.  Flexible working has reduced the requirement for new office buildings. Other innovations, such as shared workspace and coworking, have reduced the need for employees to have their own dedicated workspace, according to the report.

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About time we simply accepted that coworking and flexible working are the new normal

About time we simply accepted that coworking and flexible working are the new normal

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Ask someone to list innovative companies which have become notable disruptors in their market and they invariably respond with two names – Uber and Airbnb. That is because both brands are positioned squarely and successfully at the retail consumer: for people who use a taxi or take an occasional short break in a foreign city, they have become the automatic default options. But there is another equally successful business targeting the corporate space, aimed particularly at small businesses and millennial tech start-ups: WeWork. Just like Uber and Airbnb, it is less than a decade old. In that time, WeWork’s ambition of being the world’s leading coworking company has been realised. Championing itself as a disruption revolutionary, it has succeeded more prosaically by ‘creating environments that increase productivity, innovation, and collaboration,’ according to its website. WeWork’s model involves renting office space cheaply via long-term lease contracts. Small units are then re-rented at higher rates to start up companies which are happy to pay a premium because they need very little space.

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SMEs spend more time searching for private offices than coworking space

SMEs spend more time searching for private offices than coworking space

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Second Home coworkingSearches for private offices have become more popular than coworking space among SMEs over the past year, according to new data from commercial property marketplace Hubble. The firm reports that this marks a reversal from the previous year’s results, although searches for coworking space remain disproportionately high compared to the overall office market. According to Hubble, searches for private offices grew an average of 40 percent month-on-month from January 2017 to January 2018, with 43 percent more searches being made for private offices over coworking space, and searches for the category ‘private office’ comprising 62 percent of all searches on the Hubble platform.

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Flexible and coworking offices to account for ten percent of UK property market by 2027

Flexible and coworking offices to account for ten percent of UK property market by 2027

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Demand for flexible workspace including coworking space soared across the UK during 2017, according to a report from Cushman & Wakefield. The study of the rapidly growing market also claims that WeWork is already the largest single corporate occupier of office space in London, with only the public sector exceeding its scale. In addition, the report also claims that WeWork has taken up more space in London’s key commercial property districts than any other occupier since 2012. According to the report, WeWork has taken up more than twice as much space as Google, which leased 1.3m sq ft over the five-year period, while Amazon and Deutsche Bank leased just over 1 m sq ft and 0.9 m sq ft.

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Occupiers concerned about lack of innovation from commercial property sector

Occupiers concerned about lack of innovation from commercial property sector

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commercial property innovationThe UK’s productivity is lagging behind other G7 countries and property directors are concerned that landlords’ lack of proactivity around commercial property innovation may hamper efforts to move the UK up the productivity league table, according to the newly published results of  a survey carried out at the Property Directors Forum in December 2017, hosted by Avison Young. Attendees at the event held at The Royal Society of Chemistry, Piccadilly, were asked to provide their thoughts on property innovation and the role that landlords have in leading the way. The survey revealed that not one of the property directors have been approached by their landlord(s), proactively, to discuss property innovation and, in fact, 40 percent of directors reported their landlord as being reluctant to innovate.

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European commercial property market in good health as coworking phenomenon takes hold

European commercial property market in good health as coworking phenomenon takes hold

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European commercial property markets have started 2018 in a positive way, with provisional data for 2017 from Knight Frank suggesting that investment volumes were higher than in 2016. If 2017 beats 2016’s total of €216 billion it will still remain well below the market peak of 2015 when over €250 billion was invested, according to the latest commercial property outlook report from Knight Frank. The real estate firm expects 2018 transaction volumes to be similar to those of 2017 and the report says that significant amounts of capital continue will be allocated to real estate.  The report also highlights how flexible workspace and coworking is now a Europe-wide phenomenon, with London, Berlin and Paris witnessing the strongest growth. The sector will continue to expand, as new styles of workspace are developed to service a growing variety of occupier needs, says the report. Last year Baptiste Broughton reported for us on the state of the coworking market in France.

Flexible space and smart tech to grow this year, while occupiers decide on Brexit

Flexible space and smart tech to grow this year, while occupiers decide on Brexit

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Flexi-space and Smart tech to grow this year, while occupiers decide on BrexitThe proportion of flexible space within occupier portfolios will continue to increase in 2018; a growing adoption of technology will redefine buildings, workplaces and portfolios; and it will be a year of decision for many businesses regarding Brexit. These are among the ‘UK Property Predictions 2018’ report from JLL which covers a range of different topics, with a particular focus on UK corporate occupiers. The report claims that traditional static portfolio concepts are being redesigned to incorporate new formats of space, co-working and a more fluid and diverse range of space options that support creativity, innovation and collaboration. More →

Serviced offices and coworking spaces boom in Manchester in response to growing customer demand

Serviced offices and coworking spaces boom in Manchester in response to growing customer demand

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Rising demand from businesses for flexible working space has sparked a boom in the provision of coworking spaces serviced offices in Manchester in 2017, according to the latest office market snapshot by real estate advisors Colliers International. The report showed serviced office providers addressed the need for flexible working from small and growing operators by taking in excess of 100,000 sq ft of space in Manchester in the first three quarters of 2017. Major developments included global co-working specialist WeWork following the opening of its first office outside London at No 1 Spinningfields by adding another 44,000 sq ft at One St Peter’s Square and property developer Allied London launching its own co-working brand All Work & Social to operate alongside WeWork at Spinningfields.

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Review: ushering in a new era for the coworking phenomenon

Review: ushering in a new era for the coworking phenomenon 0

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Ramon Suarez has produced a very practical book, based on his own experience as one of the pioneers of coworking. And let’s be clear – it is coworking (not “co-working”; there is no hyphen), as Suarez explains, “a coworker (a member of a coworking space) is not the same as a co-worker (somebody who happens to work for the same company or in your same office)”. On his business card, Suarez describes his role as “Serendipity Accelerator”- you will understand that if you read the book. Suarez differentiates coworking from its many (and mostly false) aliases. Shared offices may be collaborative, but do not provide the network of people found in a good coworking space. Networked offices, where more than one company shares space and may collaborate, “come close” to coworking. Hacker & Maker spaces, Accelerators, Incubators and Cafes are similarly differentiated.

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Edinburgh named best city in the UK for coworking

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Edinburgh has been named as the UK’s leading city for coworking , according to a study from MoneySuperMarket. The firm analysed 18 cities across the UK against key factors, such as the cost per workstation, business insurance and the number of office spaces available, to see which cities are deemed the most desirable places to co-work. The research found Edinburgh to be the best city for coworking spaces, due to its competitive coworking prices, broadband speeds and low number of insurance claims. Brighton and Hove on the other hand ranked last, due to the limited and costly desk space. Although London has the highest number of coworking spaces, the high costs of working in London ensured it finished near the bottom of the list based on the criteria used in the study.

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Future office and changing business of work debated at Workplace Trends

Future office and changing business of work debated at Workplace Trends

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Those working within the built environment are already in the change business, was the view of Neil Usher of workessence in his presentation at the Workplace Trends Conference which was held in London this week. This was apt, as the changing business of work’ was the theme of the conference. It’s a pretty common topic these days of course but a strong line up of speakers ensured some interesting discussions; which included the rise of the gig economy, the variety of ways people from different cultures perceive workplace design and predictions on the workplaces of the future. On the current design and fit out of the office, Usher was clear; that creating a fantastic workplace is independent of culture, location, the work style you want to create and the sector in which you’re working. His other mantra was that you can still work in an awful workplace with great technology, but not the other way around, which is why there is no excuse for not getting your technology right.

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