Is hybrid working delivering sustainable results for businesses?
Johnson Corner ensures flexible working is implemented correctly through its platform for developing relevant spaces.
The pandemic might have driven people away from traditional working methods. Still, for many companies, it’s time to get back to the office— although those offices might look and feel radically different.
Kiwi start-up Johnson Corner is helping businesses return to the office by transforming office buildings into consumer products where the users are the core focus. Returning to the office requires reimagining the office into a product with all the services, amenities, and spaces for users to personalise their work experiences where sustainable high performance is realised. Meaningful work life is built., says founder and CEO Adnan Belushi.
Johnson Corner has developed a platform for landlords and enterprises to transform their spaces and buildings that meet the new expectations of office users. This platform helps increase building occupancy and workplace utilisation while catering to the needs of every user, which drives better business results.
A leading trend in encouraging employees back to the office is the creation of ‘hospitality-driven’ workplaces. Coming to work is more like visiting a top-end hotel, with employees treated more like guests – not literally, but with an inherent sense of experience built in. This requires a focus on equipping the office building with flexible spaces, hospitality-driven amenities and new resources that provide exceptional service.
“Creating flexible spaces, adding hospitality services in the office space, and replacing office managers with workplace experience managers truly enables flexible working, creating a new purpose for the workplace.
“It’s a place providing great service and hospitality. It has a feeling of travel — you reach your destination and check-in, utilise the services, be productive with purpose, and enjoy good food with your colleagues, then check in again the next day. That’s what we are trying to do with office spaces in partnership with landlords—transform them into hospitality-driven, fully activated places that meet people’s needs, full-time or part-time.
“The office has taken on new meaning and become a place where you come together to collaborate and indulge in our need to be social beings — not quietly sit behind your desk nine to five,” he says.
While many companies discovered during Covid-19 disruptions that many of their employees could carry out their work remotely, it doesn’t mean continuing to do so is the best way forward, Belushi says.
“No one talks about the fact that the human brain has been wired for hundreds of years to work with others in person,” he says. “You can achieve productivity remotely, but it has a significant impact on your brain due to social isolation from your professional world, and hence, it is not sustainable — And so, many have adopted hybrid working; however, most businesses are not implementing it correctly.
“Businesses have either tried to reassert their outdated working routines through mandates or have fallen victim to the not-return-to-the-office with full hybrid working, resulting in a drop in performance,” Belushi says. “However, top organisations are building back a refreshed culture, a portfolio of modern spaces that provide flexibility and service, and the opportunity for workers to create a meaningful worklife without impacting performance.
“Over the next three years, the future of work will witness what I call “The Great Reconciliation”. Addressing the differences and gaps in workplace culture, workspace flexibility, and enabling different work styles. Achieving reconciliation depends on the extent to which an employer can afford to provide the right spaces, flexibility, and service, and the extent to which employees are willing to accept what is offered.”
Belushi says the world of work is so flexible and fast-changing that companies must be “extremely cautious” when making big decisions about how and where work is done.
“Our focus is to work with landlords, enterprises, and the industry to reduce fragmentation and create efficient workspace solutions that are affordable, high quality, and drive reconciliation by meeting the users' needs without impacting business performance”.
This new vision was recently brought to life at Highbrook Business Park, with the development of a flexible workspace amenity, in partnership with Goodman. The site is a “fully activated flexible workspace” offering 550sq m of floor space in the form of private offices for teams of up to nine people, dedicated desks in collaborative spaces, work lounges with hot desks, and meeting and event spaces.
Businesses, large and small, can license the types of spaces they need on flexible terms and use the services and hospitality to personalise their everyday work life, collaborate with purpose, and perform better.
“Office buildings worldwide are transforming into hotel-like operations to provide better user experience and business performance. Every landlord is looking for the right partner to create flexible spaces, and every enterprise is refitting its spaces to create more flexible working environments.”
Getting flexible working right is an art form, and many struggle with it. The end of hybrid working as we know it is here, and a more sustainable approach will start to take centre stage as top organisations work with Johnson Corner creating real case studies for flexible working.