n March 2020 the primary Covid-19 lockdown began, and what adopted for a lot of companies was a serious shake-up of the place folks did their jobs. The federal government ordered folks to do business from home the place attainable, and scores of office-based workers began doing their jobs remotely.
The Night Commonplace final summer season contacted FTSE 100 companies to get an perception into what number of UK-based workplace employees they’ve, what number of have been nonetheless working from residence or have been again within the workplace, and what plans there have been for having most individuals again in. You’ll be able to have a look at the findings here.
Since then many individuals have continued to do their jobs outdoors of HQs, and corporations are what workplace house they might or might not need when lockdown guidelines ease.
This month this paper did one other survey, asking companies on London’s blue-chip index concerning the measurement of their workplaces within the capital and the way vital or much less vital workplaces within the capital shall be post-pandemic.
Companies have been additionally requested whether or not there are plans to scale back, hold the identical, or improve the quantity of workplace house they’ve in London over the following three years.
Not all corporations responded, some identified they’ve little or no house within the capital, and others answered among the questions. As well as some teams stated they’d already deliberate new methods of working pre-Covid. Of those who replied and that the ballot was related to, many pointed to a future that entails extra versatile working.
Under is a have a look at what corporations needed to say to the Night Commonplace:
The non-public fairness agency has round 150 workers in London and occupies round 35,000 sq. ft. A remaining determination has not but been taken, however 3i stated it’s prone to “keep our present set-up”.
The mining large has somewhat over 140,000 sq. ft within the capital and had over 500 workers primarily based out of that earlier than the pandemic.
The group stated: “We’ve no plans to vary our workplace house necessities because of coronavirus. Close to returning to the workplace, we’ll observe authorities tips and we count on that our workers will then begin to come again to the workplace once they really feel snug doing so, together with of their commute.”
Anglo American added: “While the workplace will all the time be there for those who want to are available in, and we count on that many will need to, we do respect that workers have skilled some advantages because of the pliability of working from residence over the previous 12 months and can need to retain that flexibility going ahead. Though we don’t count on workers to want to completely do business from home, at Anglo American we’ve got all the time revered versatile working, and we’ll proceed to take action post-pandemic.”
Cyber safety group Avast has some 140 office-based workers in London. Chief folks and tradition officer Rebecca Grattan stated: “In 2020, we modified our worker contracts, so even after we reopen our London workplace, our colleagues may have the pliability to do business from home, from the workplace or a combination of each. “
Grattan added: “We need to give our colleagues the liberty to handle their very own day-to-day working sample, to decide on the place and once they work relying on particular person conditions/contexts, and so retaining our present workplace house will nonetheless be vital to us.”
Grattan additionally stated: “The pandemic has modified working practices endlessly but in addition supplies alternatives for companies to supply their workers higher flexibility; empowering working dad and mom and recruiting expertise from a wider geographical space. Nonetheless, we nonetheless recognise the advantages of human and social interplay, which is important for our psychological well being and effectively being. For these causes, we subsequently envisage retaining our presence in London.”
The insurance coverage agency stated: “We stay dedicated to our head workplace within the Metropolis of London and we’ve got a lease on the constructing till 2024. Because the UK’s main insurer, it’s vital Aviva stays within the coronary heart of the Metropolis, which continues to be a number one worldwide centre for insurance coverage.”
The housebuilder has over 38,000 sq. ft throughout three London workplaces. There are a spherical 250 workers at these properties, nevertheless, many of those workers additionally base themselves out of development websites numerous days per week.
Barratt has no plans to scale back workplace house within the subsequent three years.
Chief govt David Thomas stated: “Our London workplaces will all the time stay vital for encouraging collaboration and get in touch with between our workers, which is prime to the wellbeing, creativity and effectiveness of our groups. That being stated, the methods of working which we and lots of different companies have carried out and embraced through the pandemic will definitely allow working patterns to be extra versatile sooner or later.”
The oil producer is introducing a brand new hybrid mannequin of working for workers who had beforehand been primarily based within the workplace full time, balancing working within the workplace with working remotely from residence – sometimes in a 60:40 cut up.
The corporate stated: “Over the previous 12 months, we’ve got learnt how successfully folks can work remotely, but in addition the significance of collaboration and innovation and the way that is nonetheless simplest face-to-face. The brand new mannequin – bp work/life – recognises the worth and significance of each. We imagine it will provide people and groups a extra versatile, partaking and dynamic approach of working and allow us all to take higher possession over how we work. “
The vitality large stated it will likely be altering and reconfiguring its workplaces over time.
BP has numerous London workplaces:
-St James’s Sq. HQ. It bought this in November 2020 with a two 12 months lease again. This provides it time to take a look at choices for brand spanking new house probably in future.
-Canary Wharf. In mid 2020 it agreed to take house in 25 North Colonnades, which shall be prepared for occupation in 2022.
Sunbury-on-Thames – a enterprise park the place BP has house.
The maker of Dunhill cigarettes and Vuse vaping units has roughly 190,000 sq. ft in London, and almost 1000 everlasting workers primarily based in Globe Home (the London head workplace).
The group has no present plans to maneuver the top workplace out of Globe Home.
An organization spokesman stated: “Our quick and ongoing precedence is the well being and well-being of our workers whereas all of us proceed to observe UK Authorities tips. We shall be reviewing our office practices in the end to find out which preparations are most applicable for the enterprise and our workers as soon as present restrictions have been lifted.”
The property developer has 40,000 sq. ft of workplaces at York Home, its HQ, within the West Finish. Near 500 labored there pre-pandemic.
British Land stated it critiques the quantity of workplace house it makes use of regularly and it presently has no plans to vary this.
Chief govt Simon Carter stated: “Covid-19 will undoubtedly have a long-lasting affect on working patterns. Whereas the pandemic has proven that folks can work extra flexibly, top quality workplaces in nice areas with the appropriate facilities have an important function to play in supporting studying, fostering tradition and inspiring collaboration and social interplay.”
The telecoms group has round 500,000 sq. ft of workplace house within the capital. The primary constructing is presently BT Centre. It agreed a sale and leaseback deal there in 2019 and plans to maneuver the HQ, initially set for 2021, to a brand new constructing, One Braham in Aldgate.
The corporate is in center of its ‘higher office programme’, which has the ambition to each consolidate to fewer buildings in addition to making a community of great regional hubs.
A BT spokesman stated: “Since we introduced our transfer to BT’s new HQ in London’s Aldgate East two years in the past, the road between workplace and residential working has been blurred and appears set to remain this fashion for a very long time to return. Whereas groups may have higher flexibility on how they divide their time between workplace and residential, the workplace will stay a core a part of life at BT.”
He added: “All desk-based colleagues will proceed to have a devoted BT work location and the workplace would be the central point of interest for conferences, collaboration and the excitement of working life; our new HQ at One Braham, like all our different new areas, has been designed particularly with this fashion of working in thoughts – and with digitally enabled connectivity all through, powered by 5G and full fibre broadband.”
Bunzl, a supplier of workspace provides akin to paper cups, had round 50 workers in London workplaces at the beginning of the pandemic, and plans to maintain the quantity of house it has within the capital the identical over the following three years.
Chief govt Frank van Zanten. stated: “We’re a really decentralised enterprise with a small London head workplace and a number of international amenities. Whereas lots of our 20,000 colleagues globally have continued to work on web site, sourcing and delivering important objects for frontline heroes and companies, others have shifted to working from residence the place attainable, together with these in our London workplace. I imagine this era has highlighted each the positives and negatives of working from residence.2
He added: “Though versatile working will definitely stay a characteristic of the office going ahead I imagine the workplace atmosphere will stay vastly vital for collaboration and socialising. Nonetheless, we do count on there shall be a higher give attention to cleansing and hygiene in workplace areas and guaranteeing worker security.”
Guinness and Smirnoff vodka maker Diageo had already deliberate to scale back its workplace measurement in London earlier than the coronavirus outbreak.
In 2019 the drinks agency stated it might be transferring its international headquarters from a constructing in Park Royal, to 16 Nice Marlborough Avenue in Soho. As deliberate, the transfer is collaborating in 2021 with 900 workers throughout Diageo’s London-based operations coming collectively.
Diageo stated on the time that the transfer would provide the chance “to create an agile, world-leading working atmosphere for all its London-based workers and cut back its mixed 200,000 sq. ft of workplace house to a extra environment friendly 105,000 sq. foot constructing”.
The metal and mining agency has round 700 sq. ft in London which it’s prone to hold over the following three years. Staff are prone to return to the workplace as soon as the federal government steering modifications round working from residence.
Paddy Energy proprietor Flutter has 80,185 sq. ft within the capital utilized by some 771 workers pre-Covid. It stated a refurbishment of its Hammersmith workplace was already deliberate and underway forward of the pandemic, which included a discount in measurement as a part of a transfer in direction of extra versatile working.
Conor Grant, chief govt of Flutter UK & Eire stated: “Our workplace in Hammersmith will proceed to be one of many principal workplace hubs for our enterprise. We’re presently working a “residence first” method, as a result of be reviewed in July. As we emerge from the pandemic we’ll speed up the work which was already underway to help a extra versatile approach of working aiming for a optimistic stability between residence and the workplace.”
Intermediate Capital Group
ICG, a world different asset supervisor in non-public debt, credit score and fairness, stated it has round 47,000 sq. ft in London the place some 350 labored out of pre-Covid. It plans to maintain the identical quantity of house within the subsequent three years.
Worldwide Airways Group
The agency behind airways akin to British Airways stated it has 80 office-based workers primarily based on one flooring. The corporate will evaluate returning to the workplace together with its workers’ views on versatile working and authorities tips. IAG plans to maintain the identical quantity of workplace house.
The property developer and landlord’s London head workplace totals 41000 sq. ft the place 450 office-based workers have been earlier than the pandemic. There aren’t any plans to scale back the house.
Chief govt Mark Allan stated: “The Covid pandemic has clearly demonstrated how vital a job the workplace has to play in our working lives but in addition how a lot that function has modified. Individuals’s priorities have tailored to the altering world round them, and with that so should the workplace adapt. We have to provide the very best atmosphere to foster wellbeing within the office and encourage a vibrant group not only a place to work.”
Allan added: “The workplace is right here to remain nevertheless it has to work for this new atmosphere by fulfilling its very important function of fostering tradition, collaboration and worker improvement.”
L&G has round 1000 workers in London workplaces, of whom 20-25% have been agile (not completely office-based) earlier than the pandemic.
There aren’t any present plans to vary whole house, though layouts might change.
An organization spokesman stated: “L&G has stated beforehand that whereas we count on to see higher flexibility going ahead, the workplace stays an vital element of how we work – collaboration and teamwork, creativity, worker wellbeing and for some individuals who discover home-working tough, being within the workplace aids productiveness.”
The group stated that suggestions is has had from workers is that 77% need to do business from home three or extra days per week sooner or later.
As a part of a strategic evaluate introduced, the agency is focusing on lowering workplace house by 8% in 2021 and by 20% over three years. That is whole workplace house, so not simply in London.
London Inventory Change Group
Throughout the UK London Inventory Change Group has round 4,000 workers (as of 2019) – the massive majority of that are primarily based in London. It should retain its international headquarters at Paternoster Sq. within the Metropolis.
David Shalders, chief working officer at LSEG, stated: “We’ve demonstrated our capability to function with the overwhelming majority of our workers working from residence. Nonetheless, we look ahead to welcoming our folks again into the workplace after we are in a position, whereas retaining the advantages and higher flexibility related to distant working.”
The group stated final Summer time it was closing its Regents Home workplace, nevertheless it doesn’t have any extra plans to shut London properties. It’s presently within the course of of constructing modifications to its 440 Strand and 250 Bishopsgate workplaces to ensure they’re prepared for the banking group’s new ‘methods of working’, as soon as workers return post-pandemic.
A NatWest Group spokesman stated: “We’re presently planning for our return to the workplace, constructing our new methods of working mannequin, and making modifications to our workplaces to fulfill our future wants. This new hybrid approach of working will stability the benefits of working from residence with the advantages of connecting with colleagues in individual. We shall be updating our colleagues on what these modifications will imply for them in the end.”
Studying firm Pearson has round 180000 sq. ft of workplace house within the capital, the place round 1400 workers have been primarily based out of pre-pandemic.
The corporate stated it’s being extra environment friendly with house as extra workers search for versatile working, and it will imply a discount in house over time.
Chief govt Andy Chicken stated: “London is residence to Pearson’s international headquarters and we’re dedicated to our workplace on the Strand. The world of labor, just like the world of studying, is quickly altering. We’re reworking our workplaces into extra fashionable, collaborative areas to help the versatile work wants of our workers. We wish them to have the ability to come and work in an workplace, not simply at a desk. We’re additionally dedicated to supporting them to do business from home in the event that they select.”
The mining large’s international HQ is in London and it has round 33,000 sq. ft of house within the capital.
The corporate stated in 2019 it re-designed its London workplace to be extra versatile with scorching desks and collaboration areas.
Rio Tinto has now launched a versatile working coverage for office-based workers globally so workers can cut up their time between workplace and residential. The London workplace stays closed at the moment however as soon as reopened, Rio Tinto stated it anticipates “that it’s going to characteristic as an vital a part of the working week for a lot of of our workers, particularly for face-to-face conferences, networking and staff collaboration”.
The grocery store group is lowering workplace house by two flooring in workplaces in Holborn in addition to closing an workplace in Victoria.
The worldwide funding supervisor has 304,446 sq. ft of London workplace house the place some 2500 folks labored out of earlier than the ‘do business from home’ steering began. It plans to maintain the identical quantity of house.
Final 12 months Schroders completely embraced versatile working.
The warehouse landlord has round 11,500 sq. ft of workplaces within the capital the place some 100 folks work. Segro is reviewing the quantity of house it has and the configuration of that house.
Chief govt David Sleath stated: “There are apparent advantages to working in an workplace atmosphere when it comes to ease of communication and collaboration, in addition to serving to to develop our firm’s tradition. London will stay a key centre of economic and business exercise and we shall be retaining a robust base right here. Nonetheless, we’ve got realized from the pandemic that there are occasions when residence working is extra productive and fits the approach to life of our folks.”
Sleath added: “As a way to help our ambition to be a extra inclusive and various enterprise, we’ve got already introduced a brand new agile working coverage to present our workers the pliability to decide on the place they work. In apply, I envisage most of our folks working from the workplace round three days per week and remotely – whether or not at residence or at our websites – for the remaining days.”
The wealth supervisor has round 150,000 sq. ft in London and has no present plans to vary this.
The agency added: “We are going to assess this according to enterprise wants as society emerges from the pandemic.”
The agency had round 800 folks in London workplace house earlier than the disaster, and no plans to vary the present house.
Chief govt Stephen Chicken stated: “The way forward for our workplaces is genuinely hybrid. We wish our workplaces to be collaboration areas the place folks actively need to be. We’ve already put the infrastructure in place. In our London workplace at Bow Bells Home we’ve fully redesigned the house, eradicating the banks of cramped desks to create open-plan zones for folks to work together and generate concepts. We additionally put in new kitchens to make the workplace a genuinely engaging place to work in. We’re prepared for workers to return and are simply ready for the secure level to get on with it.”
The patron items large stated its plan for a brand new campus in Kingston stays the identical. Ought to the scheme be granted planning permission, Unilever will occupy the campus workplace buildings in Winter 2023/2024. The transfer would deliver collectively round 2,000 workers from 5 present websites in London and Surrey into two workplace buildings constructed to the very best sustainability customary.
Alan Jope, chief govt of Unilever stated: “We see a hybrid future of labor, the place folks may spend a few days within the workplace and two or three days at residence or working remotely. This has unlocked great productiveness and adaptability within the Unilever staff.”
The promoting large has round 35 workplaces throughout London that it was already within the means of consolidating earlier than Covid. Earlier than the disaster it had some 10,000 workers in London workplaces.
WPP is investing in in three campuses alongside the South Financial institution – which incorporates its present Sea Containers constructing – “that can set up a serious artistic hub on this thriving a part of London and cut back our house by round 20% via versatile working”.
Mark Learn, chief govt of WPP stated: “We are going to by no means return to working in the way in which we did earlier than and our folks will work extra flexibly, in our workplaces, with our purchasers and from residence.”
Learn stated: “As a people-centric organisation, with creativity at its coronary heart, we’ll outline the function of the workplace round bringing folks collectively, collaborating, studying and constructing a robust tradition, all to create extraordinary work for our purchasers.”
Author: ” — www.standard.co.uk ”