When CBRE released its forward-looking thought leadership piece on Real Estate 2030: The Age of Responsive Real Estate in mid-March, just as the global economic lockdown dramatically changed the ways in which businesses operate, little did we know how quickly many of our predictions would come true.
The normally slow process of adapting to new trends in employee work preferences, consumer buying patterns and business operations was radically sped up to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. After all, necessity is the mother of invention.
From a work perspective, our predictions of a much more mobile workforce by 2030 are already here. The office-using business ecosystem instantly became dependent on home offices, mobile devices, video conferencing, messaging apps and the internet to remain solvent. But along with this success have come some very real challenges brought on by the collision of personal and professional life taking place under one roof.
In the long-term, employees may feel less tethered to the physical office, but it will still play a significant role in maintaining a culture of belonging, collaboration and innovation.
Pre-COVID, the rise of flexible office spaces and modern, experience-driven workplace environments was a huge shift from the traditional real estate model. But this transformation was adopted by only the most progressive developers, landlords and companies as the way of the future. As they emerge from COVID lockdown, workers likely will vote with their feet and choose places to work that offer new choices and spaces to cultivate their creativity, increase their productivity and most importantly improve their health and wellness. This transformation will become more critical than ever for companies to remain competitive by harnessing the power of the physical workplaces that mesh seamlessly with the digital world.
Some ways in which the intersection of the physical and digital worlds likely will impact the physical workplace include:
Office occupiers are sitting squarely at the increasingly important intersection of the physical and digital worlds and must develop strategies that effectively merge them to shape the future of how people interact with the workplace.