Tech firms balance flexibility, productivity and efficiency with evolving hybrid work strategies
Tech companies have been on an economic roller coaster: climbing the incline of growing headcount and office space, then navigating hard turns with revenue plateaus and interest rate hikes. Now technology leaders are strategizing to avoid surprise twists or declines in the future.
In the Technology Spaces Report, we examine the changing tech industry and how companies are evolving workplace strategy to effectively adapt their spaces to better align with business priorities and new ways of working.
Changing priorities: what’s top of mind for tech leaders
Research shows the top three priorities for technology companies are reducing operating costs, improving sustainability and optimizing portfolios. To act on these top priorities, companies are:
Returning to enhanced spaces
Returning to the office in more efficient, enhanced, sustainable spaces
While leading companies in tech remain spread across the spectrum of the workplace strategies and attendance policies, there is a definite shift toward in-office attendance and hybrid strategies with 79% of tech companies encouraging employees to be in the office at least part-time.
It’s not just leadership that wants their teams back together. Nearly half of remote workers say they miss the connection that comes with in-office collaboration and workplace culture. Productivity, though challenging to measure, can surge in human-rich environments – especially with the right balance of “we” space and “me” space.
So, what’s keeping tech employees from badging in? The most often cited objection to in-office attendance is the commute, which tech companies are addressing with 43% considering or already offering commuting stipends. Tech companies are also enhancing office technology and amenities in an effort to make the office more efficient and welcoming.
Changing spaces: dev mode for the workplace
New leasing has slowed across the tech sector, and like other industries, with tech companies opting for renewals more often. Many tech firms are still figuring out how to best adapt workspaces for evolving hybrid or remote-focused strategies, with only 54% stating more than half their portfolio is optimized for new ways of working.
For a workplace to be optimized for hybrid, there needs to be an equilibrium in three key areas.
Offices are moving from assigned desks and enclosed meeting spaces to more collaboration space, shared seating and modernized floor plans.
While portfolio reduction was the trend for tech clients in 2022-23, tech leaders remain divided on real estate strategy for the next 3-5 years, with 36% saying their portfolio will expand. Some of this is driven by companies cutting too much and needing to expand space again to accommodate new growth and more employees returning to the office. Adapting space for hybrid work and more collaboration can also increase overall footprint compared to dedicated desks.
Changing outcomes: planning for productivity and success
While it seems measuring productivity is a goal to strive for, it is often elusive to measure. Successful teams, businesses and even spaces are not measured one-dimensionally. Successful tech firms are:
- Finding their unique balance between competing business priorities
- Assembling an experienced team to refit spaces for the future of work
- Defining, evaluating and refining success of the business and the workforce
What does the future workplace look like for tech companies today?