According to a new survey from IWG, only 8% of UK workers are ready to make a long work commute once they return to a physical workspace. As the government recently updated guidelines that encouraged workers to continue working from home, 57% have expressed interest in having an office closer to home in the long-term.
The disdain for commuting is one of the key factors in boosting demand for offices in suburban areas after the pandemic. In fact, IWG reported a 22% increase in sales between June and August. However, sales in central London saw a 40% dip during the same time.
While Londoners are hesitant to travel to the workplace, IWG”s locations in Uxbridge and Luton have seen a 74% increase in demand.
“The changes we’ve experienced in how and where we work are here to stay. As we have seen during the pandemic, people have enjoyed working from home and have tasted the relative luxury of not having to commute,” said Mark Dixon, CEO of IWG. “This is unsurprising given a vast array of sources, from the Office for National Statistics to Princeton University, tell us continually that commuting is the least favourite part of the working day for many.”
Dixon added that although there is a clear aversion to long commutes, once guidelines permit, companies will still have a need for physical workspaces to collaborate in-person and maintain employee engagement.