A survey from Gensler in 2020 has indicated that rumours of the demise of the office (as constantly debunked in this magazine throughout last year) may be greatly exaggerated – with over 67% of UK workers wanting a hybrid model of working, spending between one and four days in the office each week.
The survey shows that those in a hybrid model are currently having the best experience and are more likely to feel comfortable experimenting with new ways of working, to feel as if working during the pandemic has had a positive impact on their creativity, and to feel more overall satisfaction with their job. The hybrid model may also have an impact on perception—those in a hybrid model are more likely to believe their workplace offers a great experience, including higher scores rating job satisfaction, personal creativity and welbeing. Ultimately, the hybrid model allows employees to match their environment to the work they need to do, creating an optimal mix of work locations.
Detailed in Gensler’s UK Workplace Survey 2020, these new findings track workplace models in the months since the start of the pandemic, with emotional and social engagement key to workers’ needs. As of August 2020, only one quarter of UK professional workers have returned to the office full-time; half continue to work from home full-time as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. For the vast majority of these workers, the current work model is a result of company or government policy rather than individual flexibility or choice in the style of working. But as those workers look to the future, many would choose a work scenario that is different than their current state, creating an unprecedented demand for change to work as we know it.