Guest blog by, Kurt Mroncz, founder and managing director, Offices iQ

A ‘paradigm shift’ is the phrase that has been used to describe the move to an on-demand economy. Rapid advances in technology have not only changed what is feasible, but what is expected. This in turn is changing our approach to the consumption of goods and services. Music, television, car rental and gyms are all examples of on-demand markets – and office space has moved this way too.
There are now around 3,000 flexspace operators in the UK, many creating distinct niches through their service offering. The market is rapidly being tiered, providing spaces for organisations of all sizes. This is set to grow – Deloitte’s 2020 real estate outlook found that the majority of corporate real estate companies’ tenants prefer flexspace over traditional leases.

Why flexspace?

A recent study on the workplace and employers found that the most important aspects of work for millennials are culture, flexible working, workplace design, and wellness. Balancing these aspects is a key consideration for any organisation looking to attract and retain talent. Concerns around talent migration have been rising significantly as technological advances, governmental policies, and changing employee demographics and expectations are reshaping the workplace climate.
Flexspace helps organisations to address these issues. End-user experience is a top priority for most CRE leaders today. Flexspace allows organisations to quickly adapt as a workforce changes in size and demographic. Working alongside other organisations or in an office space designed specifically to facilitate informal meetings can spark creativity and boost productivity.

Choosing the right flexspace may also minimise commutes for employees or meet their desire for onsite services, better focus space, or simply a buzzy collaborative environment. This is particularly important since research highlights that the workplace experience is subjective and no single design – however perfect on paper – will remain ideal as a workforce evolves.

Flexspace allows for office moves without extensive overheads in office design. Organisations are able to experiment with the type of workplace in which they’re going to place their staff without committing to a long-term lease. These spaces also allow organisations to grow, expand into new areas, or enable a valued employee to relocate and still have an office space. The on-demand nature of the spaces ensures that these changes can be made as soon as the need arises.

By finding the ideal space, workplace experience and wellbeing can be optimised rapidly and at minimal cost. The right flexspace can cater to the needs and wants of employees without organisations having to plan and implement many of these schemes themselves. Wellbeing is a huge factor in employee retention, with happy employees staying in their jobs up to twice as long as less happy colleagues.

The smooth, instantaneous, on-demand economy is a product of technological development. The tools that allow remote working and collaboration are the ones which have made flexspace possible. These offices are using embedded technology to improve their own efficiency through the use of sensors and data analytics to better predict and adapt to occupants – with the goal being increased productivity of the occupants.

Having fast, reliable technological infrastructure is a huge draw for most organisations as it not only increases the speed at which people are able to work, it also decreases stress levels, once again creating an ideal environment for workplace wellbeing.

Keeping up with demand
Businesses will increasingly crave on-demand spaces, as the speed at which markets change and information is shared and consumed necessitates flexibility. Organisations require workplaces that reflect this style of rapid evolution and flexspace offers this. Looking ahead, companies from large corporates down to startups will expect even quicker solutions when looking for space.

Author: Kurt Mroncz, founder and managing director, Offices iQ

Kurt Mroncz is co-founder and managing director of Offices iQ, a leading broker of flexible offices and coworking space for the corporate sector. Kurt has spent more than 14 years in the flexible workplace environment. He initially worked at Regus where he held the position of UK sales and marketing director, before spending eight years as VP of global corporate solutions. Seeing the growth potential of flexible office space, particularly in the corporate sector, he set up Offices iQ in December 2016. Offices iQ provides an end-to-end service for corporate and enterprise organisations using flexible space within their corporate real estate strategy, sourcing the widest choice of space globally and providing customer support from occupancy to exit. Offices iQ has a database of offices in more than 120 countries and finds space to match the unique needs of each client.