Workplace Insight https://workplaceinsight.net Fri, 30 Oct 2020 06:50:31 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://workplaceinsight.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/cropped-Insight_logo_only-3-144x144.jpg Workplace Insight https://workplaceinsight.net 32 32 Organisations shift attitudes on meeting costs of home office setup https://workplaceinsight.net/organisations-shift-attitudes-on-meeting-costs-of-home-office-setup/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=organisations-shift-attitudes-on-meeting-costs-of-home-office-setup Fri, 30 Oct 2020 06:50:31 +0000 https://workplaceinsight.net/?p=55467 Eighty-two percent of US based employers now believe the organisation should absorb the cost of a home office setup for employees that work from home full-time. This is a dramatic increase over those who did so before COVID-19. These and other findings from The Future of Home Office Cost Sharing survey from Global Workplace Analytics […]

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home officeEighty-two percent of US based employers now believe the organisation should absorb the cost of a home office setup for employees that work from home full-time. This is a dramatic increase over those who did so before COVID-19. These and other findings from The Future of Home Office Cost Sharing survey from Global Workplace Analytics and Design Public Group, will lead to profound changes in how companies procure and distribute technology and furniture, budget for workplaces, attract and retain talent, and manage safety risk, according to the report’s authors.

Not only do organizations feel responsible for absorbing the cost of a home office set-up for employees that work from home full-time, but they also feel responsible even when an employee is working from home 3 days/week (61 percent agree the organization is responsible), or even 1 day/week (23 percent agree). The survey captured sentiments around provisioning for home office technology, furniture, utilities, and more.

“Before COVID, employees who worked from home generally saw it as a privilege and didn’t expect their employer to cover their home office expenses,” says Kate Lister, president of Global Workplace Analytics. “The survey shows that sentiment has shifted during the pandemic.”

“I think three factors are at play here. First, working from home is no longer a matter of choice. Second, it’s one thing to sit in an uncomfortable chair or work with just one monitor when you are used to having two when you’re doing it one or two days a week, it’s another thing altogether when you’re doing it every day for months on end. Finally, the demographics of who’s working from home have shifted from mostly high income older workers before COVID-19, to the full range of income classes during it and those with lower incomes simply can’t afford ergonomic or upgraded technology solutions.”

Other findings:

  • The shift to work from home is definitely here to stay. Only 5 percent of companies expect a return to normal when the pandemic is over. Nearly half of companies have already announced a more permanent shift to work from home post-COVID.
  • Nearly 25 percent of organizations expect 75 percent+ of their workforce to work from home 3+ days/week post-COVID. Twenty-two percent are still undecided.
  • Most companies have already provided technology such as a laptop (92 percent), webcam (68 percent) and 2nd monitor (54 percent) for employees’ home offices. Next, companies are considering providing a chair (41 percent considering) and desk (31 percent considering).
  • Nearly half of respondents said they were unaware of the worker’s comp and health insurance liabilities of not providing employees with an ergonomic home office.

“Leading employers are already thinking about the need for good ergonomics at home and I suspect it won’t be long before others look to the economics of it just as they have in the office,” says Lister. The fact is they could pay for over 350 ergonomic office chairs for the cost of one workers compensation claim.”

“At the start of the pandemic, nobody really had a plan or policy regarding home office expenses,” says Matthew Lieb, Owner and CEO of Design Public Group. “Many reacted quickly by letting employees take their office set-ups home or offering stipends via paychecks without much oversight into how or where they’re spent. But what we’re seeing now is a realization among employers that it’s in their best interest to ensure employees have a set-up that’s designed with employee health, safety, and productivity in mind.”

Image: Connection Furniture

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Trust from the boss outweighs all other factors for employee happiness https://workplaceinsight.net/trust-from-the-boss-outweighs-all-other-factors-for-employee-happiness/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=trust-from-the-boss-outweighs-all-other-factors-for-employee-happiness Fri, 30 Oct 2020 00:05:12 +0000 https://workplaceinsight.net/?p=55461 While some organisations have welcomed remote working with open arms, other employers have struggled to trust their employees to work autonomously with some even ramping up on surveillance to track exactly what their workforce is doing. This may however be problematic for organisations looking to attract and retain talent as, according to a recent report […]

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Trust

While some organisations have welcomed remote working with open arms, other employers have struggled to trust their employees to work autonomously with some even ramping up on surveillance to track exactly what their workforce is doing. This may however be problematic for organisations looking to attract and retain talent as, according to a recent report from UK-based tech-for-good developer, Culture Shift, almost all (93 percent) of Britain’s workforce say having an employer that trusts them is important for their overall happiness at work. 

A further 83 percent also admit autonomy is essential, while 86 percent say working at a company with a strong ethical background is key, signalling some employers may need to rethink their strategies as they plan for the future.

“If companies want to attract the best in the business, then they need to adapt”

The same report also claims that remote working opportunities are imperative for the majority (81 percent) of employees across the UK, with more than half (57 percent) saying they would like to remain working from home, 45 percent dreading going back to the workplace and 47 percent worrying they won’t be able to adjust to going back. That said, 27 percent have felt imposter syndrome (self-doubt) more so while working from home.

“If companies want to attract the best in the business, then they need to adapt and take note of what employees are really looking for in a workplace. The pandemic has resulted in more calls for flexible working, and different ways of approaching communication and collaboration. This has also led employees to reflect on what’s most important to them – and trust ranks higher than all other factors.

“As businesses continue navigating the pandemic and conversations around the future of workplace culture take precedence, employees are hoping everything from flexibility to trust, autonomy, a competitive salary and strong ethics will be at the top of the agenda,” comments Gemma McCall, CEO, Culture Shift.

 

Findings:

  •  91 percent confirm good communication from their employer is important to them
  •  91 percent say a competitive salary is integral
  •  90 percent say flexibility is an important factor to their overall happiness at work
  •  88 percent say work-life balance and the ability to plan work around family/childcare is important
  •  85 percent say progression opportunities are key
  •  81 percent confirm working at a company with a good CSR scheme is essential
  •  64 percent say free perks, such as paid for breakfast, yoga classes and gym memberships are important
  •  91 percent of employees say that working at a company with a good reputation for treating employees fairly is integral to their happiness at work
  •  79 percent say working somewhere with a diverse workforce is important
  •  Almost two-thirds (64 percent) would like to return to the workplace with flexitime, while 69 percent would like to do a mix of working from the workplace and home

Read the full report here.

Image by Vicki Nunn

 

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Bisley launches their new MultiRange https://workplaceinsight.net/bisley-launches-their-new-multirange/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=bisley-launches-their-new-multirange Fri, 30 Oct 2020 00:00:32 +0000 https://workplaceinsight.net/?p=55453 Bisley’s award-winning MultiDrawer has firmly established itself as a much-loved piece of furniture since it was designed by Freddie Brown in 1958 and is found in many forms within the traditional office or the home. Now, as part of their new Belong collection, Bisley has launched the MultiRange, a reinvention of the iconic MultiDrawer to […]

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Bisley’s award-winning MultiDrawer has firmly established itself as a much-loved piece of furniture since it was designed by Freddie Brown in 1958 and is found in many forms within the traditional office or the home. Now, as part of their new Belong collection, Bisley has launched the MultiRange, a reinvention of the iconic MultiDrawer to reflect the more flexible working patterns we’ve all adapted to in 2020. Accompanied by an accessory range that can be also incorporated into the original MultiDrawer, the MultiRange makes the design classic work even harder in your space.

Perfect for smaller locations, the MultiDesk brings you all the benefits of the iconic MultiDrawer, transformed into a flexible workstation. You can stay organised while working comfortably, as well as maximising space within the home or office. With a range of options to suit any location, whether you already own a MultiDrawer or you are looking to buy one, the versatile MultiDesk allows you to build your own unique arrangement to suit your needs. Elevate an existing MultiDrawer by adding a desktop and choose from elegant hairpin-style or beautiful wooden legs. Or, use a top for two MultiDrawers to revamp your existing storage into a practical and stylish working desk.

Richard Costin, CEO of Bisley commented, ‘The MultiDrawer has been an iconic staple of the office for many years and we were delighted to win a Design Guild Mark to celebrate its beautiful design in 2017. 2020 has given us all an opportunity to consider our working practices, which has resulted in Bisley launching the Belong Collection. Our design team worked hard to breathe new life into our classic heritage design, truly modernising this product for the office and the home.’

Made out of laminated white ply, the MultiSideboard coordinates beautifully with the rest of the MultiRange. Steel doors match your MultiDrawer or MultiDesk, adding a coordinating pop of colour, while the simple clean lines combine design and practical storage for any room. Again, with hairpin legs and, in this case, adjustable interior shelving, the MultiSideboard provides an understated minimalist place to pop your printer or other belongings into. That way, when you are finished with work you can pack your day away.

To transform and accompany MultiDrawers, Bisley has also launched a new accessories range. The MultiSling attaches a design classic to your desk. With technology, screens and other parts of the homeworking set up, desk space is at a premium. Bisley’s new MultiSling allows you to be savvier with your space, without compromising on the way you work. The MultiSling discreetly attaches to the underside of your desk and can be designed to perfectly match your MultiDrawer with a broad range of colours available.

Finally, the MultiTask is a tray that fits perfectly on top of your MultiDrawer, ensuring that your go-to items are always at hand. The MultiTask means that you can always keep your desk space clear and tidy. It is available in 12 different colours to mix or match with your MultiDrawer or Mosaic range.

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Workplace culture is not something to be changed with hashtags https://workplaceinsight.net/workplace-culture-is-not-something-to-be-changed-with-hashtags/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=workplace-culture-is-not-something-to-be-changed-with-hashtags Thu, 29 Oct 2020 00:05:26 +0000 https://workplaceinsight.net/?p=55439 The state of the nation’s mental health and subsequent pressure on organisations to do ‘something’ has resulted in a PR opportunity for those who see it and take it. While mental health is high on the agenda of workplace culture improvements, several organisations, including Barclays, Eon and Unilever to name a few, have signed an […]

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workplace cultureThe state of the nation’s mental health and subsequent pressure on organisations to do ‘something’ has resulted in a PR opportunity for those who see it and take it. While mental health is high on the agenda of workplace culture improvements, several organisations, including Barclays, Eon and Unilever to name a few, have signed an open letter to The Times pledging to prioritise mental health as employees return to work, after research showed that more than a third of workers were struggling.

Deloitte, Allianz, and BP are amongst many which have a corporate partnership with the charity Mind, the leading mental health charity in England and Wales, to demonstrate their serious commitment to mental wellbeing. They can use Minds branding on external media, while supporting the charity’s efforts to increase awareness.

It begs the question why organisations feel the need to publicise commitment to what is essentially a legal obligation as far as mental health is concerned. Such media coverage can look great in the eyes of investors and the public alike, but it could simply be just that, a PR stunt.

Heathy Working Lives is a free health and safety advice service in Scotland and is part of NHS Health Scotland. It provides an award programme to help you identify issues and improve health, safety and wellbeing in your organisation in a structured and productive way.

It begs the question why organisations feel the need to publicise commitment to what is essentially a legal obligation

Through the submission of a portfolio of evidence, you will, according to Healthy Working Lives, have a healthier, more motivated, and productive workforce, reduce absence rates and support employees in work and returning to work.

At gold level there is a check list which includes three health, safety, and wellbeing information campaigns, two opportunities in healthy eating…you get the idea. If as an organisation you are focussed on completing portfolios and meeting criteria purely for recognition, you are not focussed on meeting the actual needs of your employees. This potentially encourages a lack of concern for existing and emerging issues.

According to Mind, employers want to be able to benchmark progress in their efforts to support mental health. The charity therefore created a Workplace Wellbeing Index, where organisations are benchmarked against Mind’s wellbeing standards and against other organisations. Mind charges between £1,300-£10,000 to take part in the index depending on the size of organisation (must be over 20 employees). It also has an award ceremony each year to recognise those who achieve the highest rating in the index. Achieving gold standard means “Your organisation has successfully embedded mental health into its policies and practices, utilising a variety of best practice approaches and demonstrating a long-term in-depth commitment to staff mental health”.

 

Nervous ticks

It still feels as though we’re looking at tick box exercises when it comes to improving workplace culture. Creating and embedding policy is a critical first step, but it’s just paperwork and is pointless unless employees see and feel the benefits.  Measuring your policies and practices against peers or receiving a gold standard for your effort provides no benefit to employees. Conceptually few, including me, could argue that direction wise, it’s better than nothing but organisations concerned more with ticking boxes and award ceremonies are distracted from the priority of effectively reducing the causes of workplace mental health decline.

Creating policy is just pointless paperwork unless employees see and feel the benefits

Last year banking giant Natwest (then RBS) boasted increasing employee assistance programme (EAP) use from 6 percent to 18 percent claiming it’s now a proactive service rather than a crisis point product.  Someone has failed to appreciate that proactivity is about prevention not treatment. Employees don’t access an EAP when trying to prevent mental health decline, it’s far more likely they are already in a place of crisis.

The Health and Safety Executive publishes statistics on work-related stress, anxiety and depression each year. According to the Labour Force Survey in 2019, 12.8 million working days were lost due to work-related stress, depression or anxiety. Nearly 70 percent of these cases were due to workload and lack of support. More than 50 percent of all absence was due to work-related stress, depression or anxiety, more than 600,000 cases last year. I wonder how many of these employees would be eager to know that their employer had achieved a gold standard in wellbeing policy and practice.

Compare if you will, Advice Direct Scotland, a relatively unknown small organisation. It introduced a four-day week after lengthy staff consultation and concept development including ensuring that day-to-day operations and customers were not impacted. Although the initiative incurred an initial cost, due to no sacrifice in pay, ultimately it has more than returned the investment through improved motivation leading to increased productivity and a staggering decrease of 77 percent in absence rates since implementation. It’s the difference between publicising positive results for your employees, versus publicising what you intend to do, or how you measure up to the competition.

Those who have signed up to the Mental Health at Work Commitment as publicised in The Times are encouraged to follow six standards which follow on from the ‘Thriving at Work’ study led by Lord Stevenson and Mind’s CEO Paul Farmer.

Now we’re talking. This study identified essential areas required to improve workplace mental health. The standards look at work design, organisational culture, capability, tools, support and accountability. The only downside is that there appears to be no accountability for organisations that have made the commitment, it’s up to each employer to implement the standards as they see fit. That being the case, despite the notion of a PR win, those who take this seriously and access support to implement will be ahead of their competitors, not for a gold standard but to effect real change.

Supporting mental health is not about following the herd. It’s about laser focus on the issues that matter to people, involving staff, ensuring they have the insight to direct resources to where it can achieve tangible results, like reducing the factors which cause stress, for example.

Organisations making a difference in their workplace culture and the lives of people publicise their results, not their intentions. Measures that provide organisations with a tick in the box or gold standard are arguably not focussed on the task at hand, instead they are focussed on benefiting from the PR that comes with it.

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Oslo tops list of cities with the best work-life balance https://workplaceinsight.net/cities-with-the-best-work-life-balance-2020/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=cities-with-the-best-work-life-balance-2020 Thu, 29 Oct 2020 00:05:08 +0000 https://workplaceinsight.net/?p=55427 Cloud-based access control company Kisi has released their 2020 work-life balance city index, highlighting how major cities from the 2019 edition have since been impacted by the global pandemic. While every city in the index suffered economic, social and structural consequences, the results of this year’s edition claim that having a safety net in place […]

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work-life balanceCloud-based access control company Kisi has released their 2020 work-life balance city index, highlighting how major cities from the 2019 edition have since been impacted by the global pandemic. While every city in the index suffered economic, social and structural consequences, the results of this year’s edition claim that having a safety net in place for workers made a large difference in how a city navigated the crisis.

Kisi first explored the topic in their 2019 study by determining the cities whose residents had the most well-rounded work-life balance, which was gauged by looking at work intensity, livability and the well-being and rights of inhabitants. The company did not design the study to be a city livability index, nor intended it to highlight the best cities to work in; but instead as an indicator of a city’s ability to provide a healthy work-life balance for its residents, while providing opportunities to relieve work-related stress.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, many employees have had to adjust to remote working due to lockdowns, while also trying to maintain balance between their work and life commitments. Considering that economic conditions have changed drastically in many cities since then, the company decided to go further in this year’s expanded edition by examining whether some cities were more impacted than others by the pandemic. The resulting index offers a look into the cities that have best managed to maintain and promote the structures needed for a healthy work-life ecosystem amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

How the study was conducted:

To begin the study, a list of 50 in-demand metropolises known for attracting professionals and families for their work opportunities and diverse lifestyle offerings were chosen. Each city’s overall work-life score was then evaluated based on a series of factors such as the amount of time a person dedicates to their job — taking into consideration total working hours, commuting, and vacation days used.

Next, Kisi researchers measured the extent to which different types of individuals in a city receive equal treatment, evaluating their access to state-funded health and welfare programs, as well as institutional support for equality and social inclusivity. Each city’s livability score was then determined by examining its affordability as well as citizens’ overall happiness, safety, and access to wellness and leisure venues — to assess whether their residents can enjoy their environment after office hours.

Finally, Kisi looked into the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on a city’s work-life balance in several key areas: the restriction of movement, the severity of lockdown measures, the overall economic impact, and the projected percentage change in employment as a consequence.

The result is an index of 19 factors determining the work-life balance of 50 cities worldwide, recognizing those who encourage a healthy balance both directly and indirectly through policies and urban infrastructure, while also bringing attention to those who have been adversely affected by the pandemic.

 

Findings:

The table below is a sample of results for the top 10 cities which had the highest scores for work-life balance in the expanded 2020 Index, compared with their 2019 ranking.

All scores are out of 100, with 100 being the highest possible score, and 0 being the lowest. New cities added in the 2020 Index are marked n/a for the 2019 ranking.

“A lot of employers may have imagined that mass remote working would lead to employees slacking off”

“A lot of employers may have imagined that mass remote working would lead to employees slacking off without the watchful eye of management or the confines of the physical office, but this big shift during the pandemic has proven the opposite. Research is now showing that people are actually more likely to overwork themselves in order to prove their productivity and availability to higher ups when not at their regular desks: this so-called phenomenon of ‘Electronic Presenteeism’,” comments Bernhard Mehl, CEO & Co-Founder of Kisi. “While remote working has a lot of benefits in terms of more flexibility and less commuting time, there is also a very real danger that employees slip into an unhealthy balance between ‘working’ and ‘home’ hours without the physical boundaries of the working environment. We wanted to bring attention to the issue of overworking in this work-life balance study once again because it’s something that while always a threat to people’s mental and physical wellbeing, seems more pressing than ever before.”

Please find the full table of data and complete methodology here:

Image by Reinhard-Karl Üblacker

 

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It`s not just businesses that need to wake up to changes in the way we work. Governments do too https://workplaceinsight.net/its-not-just-businesses-that-need-to-wake-up-to-changes-in-the-way-we-work-governments-do-too/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=its-not-just-businesses-that-need-to-wake-up-to-changes-in-the-way-we-work-governments-do-too Wed, 28 Oct 2020 05:34:14 +0000 https://workplaceinsight.net/?p=55423 We have come a long way since the government began encouraging home working in March, ahead of the national lockdown. It seems wildly naïve now to assume that we would all be back in the office two or three weeks later as if nothing had ever happened. After many months of mixed messages regarding ‘stay […]

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We have come a long way since the government began encouraging home working in March, ahead of the national lockdown. It seems wildly naïve now to assume that we would all be back in the office two or three weeks later as if nothing had ever happened. After many months of mixed messages regarding ‘stay at home’ versus ‘go back to work’, many business owners and employees quite rightly feel that the whole process seems like one step forward, two steps back. And yet, one thing that has become clear for all office-based businesses is that working life has changed forever.

In my role as Managing Director of the British Contract Furnishing Association, we were all too aware of the effects that deserting the office can have on so many businesses. Our membership consists of the contract furnishing manufacturers responsible for supplying workplace furniture to  offices up and down the country, supporting thousands of British manufacturing jobs and generating an excess of £2 billion in annual sales. As you can imagine, much of their work stopped almost immediately when the first lockdown began and whilst all our members reopened as soon as they could, many are still only operating at about 60 percent – 70 percent compared to last year.

Add to that the various businesses which rely on office workers such as restaurants, coffee shops and local pubs, and the situation is deeply worrying. A walk through the City of London at present shows painfully its ghost town characteristics bereft of people the people who are its beating heart – dashing outside to grab a sandwich on the way to their next meeting, or heading to a pub for a quick drink before home.

 

The need to act now

There are obvious benefits to home working, such as the lack of commuting and more family time, however one thing which we heard time and time again (and experienced ourselves as people formerly based in an office), was that working from home had just as many disadvantages as office life, albeit different ones. We all now know the frustrations of a bad Wifi connection on a Zoom call, or the fact that there is no real difference at present between ‘work’ and ‘home’, leading people to feel always ‘on’ and having to seem available at all times. With that in mind, we commissioned the most comprehensive independent report to date to examine the future of the office and office workers.

Officials needs to take the impact of the changed office landscape into account as they make policy decisions

Perhaps surprisingly, the results didn’t indicate that pure homeworking would be the best way forward for businesses and their workers. Indeed, the vast majority of workers surveyed didn’t want to work purely from home. The results instead indicated a clear desire for a mixed approach to where people work. Overwhelmingly, people welcomed the idea of combining working from home with key times or regular days to be in the office. Rather than presenteeism, the desire to be office-based stemmed largely around wanting to prevent isolation whilst also encouraging the engagement, creativity and teamwork which is hard to emulate on a video call.

30 percent of remote workers say they struggle with loneliness and close to half said that home working kept them worrying about work even after hours, indicating a worrying trend in terms of mental health. Many expressed frustration with technology issues as a major source of stress. However most welcomed the idea of having the option between home and office-based work, with 84% saying that they would want to meet with their direct team in person on a regular basis. In fact, 90 percent of employees welcome flexible working arrangements – a fact which was largely ignored pre-pandemic.

This year has demonstrated how successful many businesses can be with employees working remotely, to the point where many such as Twitter and Fujitsu have announced that working from home will be allowed forever or as standard practice. Home working has definitely lost its negative, outdated image of employees sitting at home doing nothing. In fact, one study found that 85 percent of businesses confirmed productivity increased as a result of having greater flexibility with work locations.

The report puts beyond doubt that the way people work is going to change. There will not be a sudden rush back to office working and businesses should be using this time to consider what this means for their own organisations and employees, whether that be changing to a different office which prioritizes breakout areas and socializing space over rows and rows of identical desks, or deciding how best to address the support and mental health implications which can arise from long-term home working and isolation.

Government, on the other hand, faces a different dilemma. If the office of the future does not guarantee the same levels of footfall at city centre shops and cafes, this will have major implications for the economy and employment levels. Officials needs to take the impact of the changed office landscape into account as they make policy decisions for the future – whether this be with regard to city planning or to helping office-reliant businesses through this transition.

We need to act now in order to be ready for the return to the office, whatever form that may take.

Image: KI

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COVID-19 driving top talent migration to rural parts of UK https://workplaceinsight.net/covid-19-driving-top-talent-migration-to-rural-parts-of-uk/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=covid-19-driving-top-talent-migration-to-rural-parts-of-uk Wed, 28 Oct 2020 00:20:22 +0000 https://workplaceinsight.net/?p=55408 Over half (52 percent) of UK workers think we will see a “reverse brain drain” of talent migration away from big cities like London and Manchester towards regional areas as a result of COVID-19, according to latest research from the Adecco Group UK and Ireland. The study of 1,000 UK workers, conducted by YouGov, highlights […]

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migrationOver half (52 percent) of UK workers think we will see a “reverse brain drain” of talent migration away from big cities like London and Manchester towards regional areas as a result of COVID-19, according to latest research from the Adecco Group UK and Ireland.

The study of 1,000 UK workers, conducted by YouGov, highlights the radical transformation of both working norms and locations as we move into the next normal, with top talent looking set to be redistributed across the country.

Those in the capital are predicting the biggest migration of UK workers out of the city, with 57 percent believing many workers will no longer feel the need to live within commuting distance of top city firms. However, the Adecco Group UK and Ireland predicts this doesn’t mean that London organisations will lose out, because access to top talent, within rural areas, will remain as a result of new hybrid working measures.

Interestingly, only 42 percent of those in Wales and 46 percent of those in Scotland agreed that we would see a migration of top talent away from the big cities in the UK as a result of the pandemic. This again suggests that overall, while people may physically move out of cities, with the option to work in commercial hubs like Edinburgh, Cardiff and Birmingham, city firms will be able to retain talent rather than lose it.

“We will always need places where companies and people come together to do business.”

Alex Fleming, Country Head and President of the Adecco Group UK and Ireland commented on the findings, “While the UK’s cities will look to reinvent themselves post-pandemic, as working patterns and preferences change, city centres will undoubtedly remain popular and continue to be a pull for top talent. Even if we do see people move out of the city, there will be many who relish the contrast between working from home and being in the office.

“We will always need places where companies and people come together to do business – to network with a range of diverse individuals and companies, and to learn from more experienced colleagues. The social pull of working in a metropolis will continue to attract – especially young talent.”

The study suggests an interesting divide in opinion on this issue when it comes to industries. Nearly two thirds (61 percent) of those who work in finance and accounting predict there will be movement of professions to regional areas. This is along with 67 percent of those who work in education, three quarters (75 percent) of those who work in real estate and 62 percent of those in media, marketing and advertising.

However, only 43 percent of those who work in manufacturing and 42 percent of those currently working in retail felt we would see top talent leave the cities in favour of regional living and remote working.

Fleming continued, “To ensure they retain and attract top talent, companies need to adapt their office environments, regardless of where they are based, to reflect the new age of hybrid working. This means creating offices that are compelling places for employees to collaborate with colleagues and clients, and a hub for establishing and maintaining a strong company culture.”

Image by Peter Kok

 

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British Sugar HQ named best corporate office in England’s central region https://workplaceinsight.net/british-sugar-hq-named-best-corporate-office-in-englands-central-region/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=british-sugar-hq-named-best-corporate-office-in-englands-central-region Wed, 28 Oct 2020 00:15:45 +0000 https://workplaceinsight.net/?p=55402 CPMG Architects is celebrating success after its designs for the British Sugar head office scooped the title of Corporate Office of the Year at the British Council for Offices (BCO) Midlands and Central England Awards last week. The building, which was completed in 2018, is home to British Sugar and its associated group businesses and […]

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British SugarCPMG Architects is celebrating success after its designs for the British Sugar head office scooped the title of Corporate Office of the Year at the British Council for Offices (BCO) Midlands and Central England Awards last week.

The building, which was completed in 2018, is home to British Sugar and its associated group businesses and provides space for some 350 people. The judging panel for the awards highlighted the development’s impressive variety of facilities – including the excellent on-site café – that allow for the movement and interaction of employees within a building that “delights and surprises at every corner.”

Richard Flisher, managing director at CPMG Architects, said: “There were a large number of fantastic projects entered in this year’s category, so we are delighted to see our British Sugar headquarters scoop the prize.

“It was really important for us to keep the employees, who would use the building every day, at the heart of everything we did design-wise. We worked closely with the team at British Sugar to implement a workplace strategy assessment, and working with associate interior designers Morey Smith, we were able to translate the business aspirations, work culture and dynamics to inform the overall design.”

“The ethos behind our new office was flexibility, collaboration and innovation.”

The internal environment provides a mixture of formal desking areas, meeting rooms, telephone booths and a large amount of flexible space designed to encourage people to circulate within the building. The ground floor is shared, containing a restaurant, a separate coffee bar and meeting rooms. The building has large opening windows on the upper floors providing a fantastic connection to nature with glare and solar gain controlled by solar tracking external glass fins. On the ground floor there are huge sliding doors to further increase the connection to the outside and enable working outside as well as inside.

An open staircase forms the unifying feature of the design, enabling the entirety of the building to be perceived from a single location and encouraging staff interaction on all levels at every opportunity.

Catharine Uglow, director of organisational effectiveness at British Sugar, said: “The ethos behind our new office was flexibility, collaboration and innovation, allowing new and agile ways of working for our teams. Working together with our architects and other partners, we believe we have achieved this, and it’s great to be recognised by the British Council for Offices for doing so.”

Richard continued: “It’s thanks to a brilliant client that was prepared to think differently and invest in design concepts, that has ultimately created a building that promotes the wellbeing of those both visiting and working in it. We’re very proud to have played a significant part in the delivery of this facility along with main contractor Bowmer + Kirkland and the rest of the delivery team – and look forward to the national BCO awards in early 2021.”

 

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