At this point, there is no doubt that the workspace has been radically transformed. Offices cannot operate as they always have done, and some of them may never do so again.
In this transit, some myths have been demolished. Working from home is no less productive and teamwork is not affected if the correct digital tools are incorporated.
For many, this is still a momentary stage. According to the London-based human resources firm Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, most companies will keep their physical spaces. However, the pandemic is forcing employers to think seriously about offering job flexibility to their employees.
Venture capitalist David Mott has considered different scenarios that may emerge for offices after the pandemic caused by COVID-19. For him, right now there is a real opportunity to make a historic change and reinvent how we understand offices.
David Mott is a founding partner of Oxford Capital, a Real Estate firm located in London. He says that among his team and his clients the issue of what workspaces will look like in the future frequently comes up. COVID-19 changed the rules.
The office is expendable
For many, these months have shown that the office is an expendable workspace. The work that is done in it can be done anywhere else.
However, to turn any venue into a workspace, digital tools are also required. Mott suggested the following models that may emerge to replace the conventional office
Completely remote office
A key point in creating a remote office environment is finding the tools that allow people to interact with each other. For this, we already have some platforms such as Zoom, Slack, or Facebook Workplace.
The lack of contact with the team is the main challenge for this model, however it would also allow the talent pool to be expanded, as well as cut costs.
Another proposal that has emerged recently is the hybrid model, which consists of working one or two days in the office and the rest of the time at a distance.
For some specialists, such as economics professor Nicholas Bloom specialized in remote work, this approach is ideal for achieving a balance between personal and professional life, reducing stress, work time, and saving time traveling between home and office.
For some, this model does not work for everyone, especially for those who prefer fixed routines.
However, it may not work for everyone, especially those who prefer a more established routine.
A model with more remote work
This model consists of working one week in the office, followed by three days of remote work.
The model is not very popular, but some large companies have already applied it after discussing it with their employees, such as Estée Lauder.
Among the advantages of this model is the option to keep your distance and from time to time share your work with your colleagues.
Hub and Spoke
This model is a variant of the hybrid model, incorporating more local options.
The model takes advantage of local skills to expand a company with remote offices in other cities and countries. If a group of colleagues works in the same area, they can socialize more often in those spaces.
This model is for companies that prioritize quality in production more than hours worked. It does not matter if the employee works from 9 to 5 or not, but rather that a result is delivered for the work.
In this model, flexibility is provided to tailor work with other commitments, rather than tailoring commitments to the job itself.
For this model to work, trust must already exist between employees and co-workers. It is a model that requires a high level of trust among a group.