Daily Digest News – June 3, 2021


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:

For a “Soft” Return to the Office, Head to D.C.’s Newest Outdoor Workspace

Tishman Speyer is launching an outdoor coworking space in Washington D.C. this month, designed to facilitate a “soft” return to the office for those who aren’t yet ready to work inside.

Studio Outdoors is a 2,000-square-foot workspace that will be open for the summer, located next to Tishman Speyer’s office building at 900 19th St. NW. The space was designed for people to work together again, but outdoors to allow for social distancing, the company said.

The surprising benefit? It’s free to use. You only need to make a reservation.

Why free? Possibly to boost membership for the company’s regular (indoor) flexible space, Studio, which resides at the same building.

Jeff Chod, Tishman Speyer’s D.C. managing director, said Studio Outdoors acts as “a gateway for folks accustomed to a different work environment”, particularly those who have been working from the comfort of their homes.

“The last 18 months has shown a need for those alternative workspaces — those engaging settings where people can create and collaborate.”

Credit: Canva

Two-Thirds of Employers Globally are Providing Mental Health Support

A new study has found that two-thirds of employees globally (65 percent) say their employers have provided support for their mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The research, ‘People at Work 2021: A Global Workforce View’ by the ADP Research Institute, suggests that many employers are taking a proactive approach to supporting their workers’ mental health.

This is particularly important during the pandemic, when individuals are experiencing additional pressures both in their work and personal lives. The report found that one in eight workers globally (13 percent) cited managing stress as their biggest challenge during the pandemic.

However, despite the additional support, some employers have noted greater scrutiny and monitoring during the workday. Two-fifths of workers (40 percent) say that their employer is monitoring timekeeping and attendance more closely now than ever.

Jeff Phipps, Managing Director of ADP in UK and Ireland, said that the huge changes of Covid-19 have cast a spotlight on the support employees need from their organisations, and it is “encouraging to see so many businesses recognize this need – some responding proactively to mitigate the emotional and psychological toll of a global pandemic.”

However, he also warned against undermining these efforts “by becoming too heavy-handed when it comes to monitoring employees”.

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Apple Reveals Remote Work Plan, Starting September

Tech giant Apple is asking staff to return to the office three days per week starting early September 2021.

CEO Tim Cook sent out an email on Wednesday informing staff of the change, according to The Verge, in which he stated that “something essential” has been missing while staff worked remotely this past year: “each other”.

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    Regarding video conference calling, Cook noted that “there are things it simply cannot replicate”.

    Most employees will be asked to come into the office three days per week — Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays — with the option of working remotely the remaining two days. Teams that need to work in-person will return four to five days a week.

    Employees will also have the chance to work remotely for up to two weeks a year, in order to be closer to family, manage unexpected travel, “or a different reason all your own.”

    Credit: Bigstock

    Rents to Stay Subdued in London, According to Workspace Group Plc

    Flexible workspace provider, Workspace Group Plc, argues that, despite early signs of recovery, rents will likely stay subdued in the coming months as pressure will remain.

    The company’s recent full-year earnings reported that vacancies stabilized in the fourth quarter of 2020. While leasing and enquiries are back to pre-COVID levels, the actual use of Workspace Groups‘ locations sits at around a third of pre-COVID levels. 

    Despite the fact that company shares fell by 3.6% this morning, the company remains optimistic about the future and expects things to recover by September of this year. Until then, however, the company believes tenants have enough leverage to negotiate prices. 

    Credit: Bigstock

    Smaller US Cities Are Betting on Digital Remote Hubs to Attract New Residents

    Smaller US cities are hoping to attract new residents now that remote work is on the rise. They plan on doing so by creating remote digital hubs within their communities and designing for a work-and-play environment. 

    Common, a co-living company, believes that now that people have increased flexibility about how and where they work, many workers are prioritizing their lifestyle and thinking about moving to areas that offer more outdoor activities. 

    Common hopes to create this type of communities and environments by creating designs that enable remote workers to have an ideal workspace setup without having to pay for an extra room. 

    The co-living company organized a competition that aimed to identify locations and concepts for remote work hbus that would provide housing + workspace for digital nomads. 

    Credit: Canva

    Full Office Recovery Expected for January 2022

    The office never died, and it is getting ready to “go back to normal”, according to experts that participated in a recent call organized by Trepp. 

    Experts agreed that by January 2022, office utilization would be back to normal. However, they did note that metrics of square feet per employee will change, as pre-COVID ones do not compute with post-pandemic requirements and comfort. 

    As workers return to the office, they will see more distance between workstations. “We likely won’t see a return to the far side of densification within an office space,” one of the analysts argued during the call. 

    The return to the office will be mostly driven by younger workers that don’t have enough space at home to set up a home office or work in comfort. An analyst argued that moving forward, offices will increasingly embrace “we” vs “me” models. 

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