Do you still need office Spaces ?
More and more companies are now thinking about completely abandoning their office spaces to rely solely on a remote working set up. This is, of course, tempting given the price of office space (10K/Year on average for one office workplace).
Are Web Collaboration Platforms enough to nurture the link between employees and their company?
Why are offices even necessary?
We can acknowledge several distinct functions that make the office workplace useful :
The workplace provides all the amenities necessary to execute the intended work.
While employees have generally a desk available at home, is it ergonomically convenient for a full-time job?
Is the WIFI connection stable enough to actually participate in business teleconferencing? Do your employees have access to dual monitors.
Is a home inkjet printer sufficient?
Is the company ready to allow a budget to equip the remote workforce?
The office gives access to the required resources to produce the company product.
Obviously, its easier to enable remote working for the administrative workforce than for the employees involved in the production.
The office provides an environment for colleagues to discuss projects, exchange ideas, solve problems.
The company culture is also tightly linked to the office. A mainly remote working based company will probably have to spend more time/effort/money on team-building activities. The current tools are not able to replace the intimacy and chemistry that in-person meetings generate.
The office establish a stronger separation between home and work.
While studies show a productivity increase of up to 50% after transitioning to remote work, we would recommend being more careful about the long term effect.
A great book about remote working from the employee perspective by Teresa Douglas and Holly Gordon.