Since the easing of the hard lockdown restrictions, we have seen thousands of workers return to the office in towns and cities across South Africa.
Time magazine published a must-read article about how the pandemic has forever changed how people think about work. Employees are now “reassessing their relationship to their jobs,” says Time. “The modern office was created after World War II, on a military model-strict hierarchies, created by men for men, with an assumption that there is a wife to handle duties at home.” That rigid model doesn’t work for today’s employees.
New data from IWG, the world’s largest operator of office and flexible space with brands including Regus and Spaces, shows that visits to its SA centres are up by 25% since the beginning of January, even as we enter the third wave, workers are eager to spend time in the office as part of a new hybrid working model.
After much of the population remained under work-from-home orders throughout lockdown, it is clear workers increasingly want to split time between home, a local office and corporate HQ. Research released by IWG earlier this year revealed three times the number of FTSE 250 companies are now looking to use the “hub and spoke” office model post-pandemic, with central offices and smaller satellites closer to where employees work.
By offering global membership access that allows customers to choose which IWG location to work from, the commercial office giant has already added a million users to its global network this year.
In April, IWG penned a deal with the Civil Service to provide civil servants across the UK access to private hybrid office spaces in 10 cities. This followed several similar large enterprise deals such as one with Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation, for its 300,000 employees to work from any of IWG’s 3,500 workspaces globally.
Mark Dixon, founder and CEO of IWG said, “We are seeing in real time more and more people returning to our spaces, across the more than a hundred countries in which we operate. Our latest data shows that there is strong appetite to spend part of the time in an office environment, be that a local office or a central HQ. The growing popularity of hybrid working amongst employees and businesses means workers now have the freedom and flexibility to choose a location to work from which suits their lifestyle.”
“The past 12 months has shown that while businesses can largely operate effectively remotely, they are planning for a hybrid future. The role of the office is evolving, and we are seeing enquiries and demand across our brands including Regus and Spaces greatly increase as employees seek out locations closer to home.”
About IWG PLC
IWG is leading the workspace revolution. Our companies help millions of people and their businesses to work more productively. We do so by providing a choice of professional, inspiring and collaborative workspaces, communities and services.
Digitalization and new technologies are transforming the world of work. People want the personal productivity benefits of living and working how and where they want. Businesses want the financial and strategic benefits. Our customers are start-ups, small and medium-sized enterprises, and large multinationals. With unique business goals, people and aspirations. They want workspaces and communities to match their needs. They want choice.
Through our companies we provide that choice, and serve the whole world of work: Regus, Spaces, No18, Basepoint, Open Office and Signature. We create personal, financial, and strategic value for businesses of every size. From some of the most exciting companies and well-known organizations on the planet, to individuals and the next generation of industry leaders. All of them harness the power of flexible working to increase their productivity, efficiency, agility, and market proximity.
Join us at www.iwgplc.com.