Portions of the real estate industry have yet to come to terms with the inevitable: remote working is here to stay.
Now is that time for industry leaders to make moves to accommodate the new era of working we are entering, and that begins with enlisting a new head of remote work position.
This role has grown across companies over the last several months and combines technology, HR and real estate skills in a way that helps manage a distributed workforce.
It’s essential for this position to be fully realized because there is still no certainty as to when people can and will want to return to the office. In fact, research estimates that Manhattan won’t reach pre-pandemic occupancy levels until 2023.
Even if this title does not stick around in the long term, companies still need specific strategies in order to accommodate the increase of flexible and remote working arrangements.
Liz Burrow, workplace consultant and former vice president of workplace strategy at WeWork, added that this position can help HR go beyond supporting the in-person experience and equip them with the tools to support remote workers.
This can range from providing remote workers with the appropriate home office furniture, to planning out group workplaces that these workers can use.
“These people will be tasked with creating remote culture, and the rituals that go along with that,” said Burrow. “It may not directly have to do with real estate, but ideally, they’ll be working with real estate to make decisions based on these goals.”