Daily Digest News – April 5, 2021

Daily Digest April 5

Hand selected flexible workspace news from the most reliable sources to keep you ahead of the pack. We find all the latest news, so you don’t have to. Morning and afternoon updates. Stay in the know.

Here’s what you need to know today:

LinkedIn Employees Get A Surprise Week Off

LinkedIn is giving workers this week off in order to reduce the risk of burnout, which has become an increasingly big problem for some remote employees.

In the meantime, a smaller group of workers will continue to operate things, and be able to schedule their time off later.

“We wanted to make sure we could give them something really valuable, and what we think is most valuable right now is time for all of us to collectively walk away,” said Teuila Hanson, chief people officer at LinkedIn. “And what is really nice after a shutdown, you come back and you don’t have a barrage of emails or meeting notes that you feel like you have catch up on or you feel like you have to peek at your email.”

A 2018 Gallup poll found that two-thirds of full-time workers experience burnout at their workplace. This number has only grown as remote workers continue to work longer hours and lack separation between home and work life.

Burnout is costly, not only in quality of work, but research from Stanford University has shown that it can cost employers $120 to $190 billion each year in healthcare costs alone.

The social media network also announced that it’s work policies in the future will allow employees to “work flexibility up to 50% of the time,” which is in tune with many other major organizations who are committing to a hybrid work model.

Credit: Unsplash

How Virtual Reality Can Improve The Workplace

Virtual reality has officially fallen into the laps of the general public in recent years, no longer being a technology reserved for video games or only accessible to high tech organizations.

Now, VR is expected to grow from a $6.1 billion industry today, to a $27.9 billion industry by 2025.

There are three different types of VR, including: mobile, which involves smartphones or tablets being connected to a headset; standalone, a headset that does not need another device to operate; and desktop, which links high-performance computers and VR headsets.

Today, companies can utilize VR to enhance their business operations, and even improve their output. But how?

Employee onboarding can often be a long process, but using VR can set a more fun, engaging tone for potential workers. Using VR, prospects can actually virtually experience what a day on the job may look like, helping them have a deeper understanding of a company’s culture and environment.

Even more, HR departments can use VR to improve harassment and diversity training by allowing employees to engage in realistic simulations of interactions that could occur in the workplace.

Additionally, VR can help with safety training for industries that are high-risk. For example, some firefighters have been able to use VR to learn how to resolve certain situations and allow them to better prepare them for the real thing.

Another benefit of VR in the workplace is that it can help workers collaborate across different company branches in a seamless way, allowing projects to be done more efficiently.

Credit: Bigstock

JLL Opens New Coworking Space In Brooklyn

JLL has opened a new coworking and flexible office space in downtown Brooklyn at the MetroTech Center.

Orchard Workspace by JLL takes up 50,000 square feet of space and designed, constructed and will operate the offices.

The space will feature flexible offices, a coworking space, meeting rooms, custom team suites and virtual office.

Brookfield Properties’ MetroTech Center stretches 5.5 million square feet and includes office and retail space, a 3.5-acre greenspace coined MetroTech Commons and more.

“With the addition of JLL’s Orchard Workspace, we are opening MetroTech up to a greater diversity of companies who want a home in downtown Brooklyn, offering a variety of flexible office spaces for small businesses and startups,” said Mark Kostic, senior vice president for asset management and leasing at Brookfield Properties.

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Credit: JLL

‘Bleisure’ Vacations Expected To Blossom

Business travel is expected to transform in the near future as people prepare for their first post-pandemic vacation.

While company-wide conventions may still be on hold for the next few months, the growing number of flexible and remote workers is expected to lead to travel that combines business and leisure, or “bleisure.”

This is made possible as many companies adopt hybrid work models, allowing employees to work in the office for part of the week, and at home for the rest.

That’s why more and more professionals may lean towards continuing to work from their vacation spots in the future, especially when they have a limited number of paid days off.

While the idea of working from a warm, sunny beach may be ideal for some, it also plays into the “always on” culture that has grown over the past year.

However, accomplishing your work-related tasks from the comfort of a hotel room generally trumps making company calls and attending Zoom meetings from your home office.

In the coming years, extended working vacations will become a mainstay as companies adopt more flexible work arrangements. With this, hotels need to be prepared to incorporate high-speed internet and office-like amenities to accommodate these workers.

Credit: Bigstock

Los Angeles’ Office Availability Continues To Rise

A new report from Savills revealed that the amount of available space has reached 51 million square feet in Los Angeles, the highest mark since 2009.

Office leasing also totaled around 2 million square feet during the first quarter of this year, nearly half the amount signed during the same period last year.

This spike in availability seems to be caused by the stream of sublease space, which has grown by 91% since the beginning of the pandemic.

Despite the growing amount of empty space, asking rents have increased by 3% in the last quarter. But Savills says that current asking rents are misleading since landlords will need to be more assertive when trying to secure tenants.

The amount of tenant tours also increased during the first quarter as vaccines became more readily available to the public.

However, California has had some of the country’s strongest pandemic restrictions and continues to recommend office workers operate remotely.

California’s biggest tech companies are preparing to open back up in the coming months though. For instance, Google has announced they plan to bring employees back into the office later this month.

Credit: Canva

Making The Office More Attractive

A survey from PwC revealed that 83% of employers feel that remote working arrangements have been successful for their company.

However, planning a post-pandemic balance between remote and in-office work has proven to be tricky. For instance, a survey from LiveCareer showed that one-third of workers would quit before returning to the office full-time.

So how can companies actually attract their employees back into the workplace?

For starters, it’s important to prioritize safety. The wellbeing of employees has quickly become a priority for many, and they want to feel both mentally and physically supported in the workplace.

Leaders need to be transparent about changes the company is making to the workplace to ensure their safety is valued, as well as explain that workers can express their needs or desires without facing repercussions.

Additionally, if a company is making operational or policy changes, it is up to leaders to clearly communicate those alterations to employees across various platforms. 

When explaining those ideas, leaders can get better feedback from employees about what does and doesn’t work for their ideal workplace.

The most important thing to note is that the past year has absolutely changed many people for good. For many, they still want remote working to be part of their schedule to reduce commutes or help their work-life balance.

Adopting parts of remote strategies for the future can not only help employees feel more comfortable in their work environment, but also improve their job satisfaction.

Credit: Canva
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