The Future of the Office
For an insight into the changing nature of the traditional ‘office’, we speak with Tosha Bontrager, Senior Director of Brand & Products for WorkSuites, which is a company that provides private workspaces to entrepreneurs, start-ups and remote workers.
With the pandemic’s influence on the transformation of the traditional ‘office’ for the post-COVID world, tell us a little bit about your offering and how this trend has affected WorkSuites?
People want to be back in the office and are tired of competing with their dogs, partners, and children for time to get stuff done. However, they are also used to the ease of working from home even though they are less productive. Companies are now allowing their employees to work a “hybrid work week” from a remote office location instead of asking them to go to the corporate office every day. Organisations that traditionally have a huge headquarters are now downsizing to smaller offices and incorporating flexible office space and remote working options instead. Flexible office space, or coworking, allows workers to have an office close to home for a few days a week and then work from home the rest of the time. This model is very attractive to workers needing a place that will boost their productivity and doesn’t require a long commute twice a day.
Workers are also concerned with social distancing and returning to the workplace safely. And while coworking is known for its large, open, communal workspaces, the pandemic has made this type of working less desirable. During the pandemic, we had to get creative, which meant coming up with new hybrid coworking memberships. They come with private office use as well as more spacious daily desk rooms and other amenities. Our new hybrid coworking allows workers to go to a physical office and benefit from human interaction, while also having privacy at the same time.
What are your predictions for the future of workspaces post-COVID?
In a survey completed by Gensler, known as the US Workplace Survey 2020, the architectural firm discovered that post-pandemic, 52% of the surveyed employees desired a hybrid-work model with some on-site office work and significant time spent at home or working remotely. We do not think this is going to change anytime soon. The way people can work has evolved and the hybrid work model accommodates every kind of worker, while helping large companies attract and keep great employees. For over 20 years WorkSuites has specialised in private offices for small companies and entrepreneurs in DFW and Houston. We believe that executive suites and coworking will always be our clients’ best and most affordable option and will also continue to be our bread and butter. The flexibility and value of our industry now checks all the boxes for both small and large businesses.
WorkSuites has made it through two recessions and a pandemic because we can easily accommodate companies that need to suddenly downsize or the newly laid-off worker that decides it’s a good time to finally become an entrepreneur, as well as companies that are thriving and growing. Our model is easily scalable. We provide all the amenities and services needed to start or run your business so you can focus on growing.
From a financial point of view, what are the advantages of your offering?
Running a business can be expensive but WorkSuites makes running your office affordable and easy. Our clients pay one monthly fee that includes everything you can think of. You get your own professional receptionist, mail and package handling, telephone service and answering, high-speed internet, a fully furnished office, printers and copiers, unlimited coffee, a full-service kitchen and a break room, a variety of coworking spaces, meeting rooms, podcast rooms and so much more. If you decide you want to start a business or enter a new market tomorrow, in most cases, we can have you up and running the next day.