Ed tor’s Note

The HR Digest - - Front Page - Happy Read­ing!

Un­oc­cu­pied of­fice parks, va­cant con­fer­ence rooms, and empty desks are com­mon in Amer­ica’s ur­ban cores. Over the last three decades, the U.S. has added roughly 2 bil­lion square feet of of­fice space to its ex­ist­ing pool, most of which to­day’s mo­bile work­force no longer needs. More­over, at any given time, more than 50 per­cent of cu­bi­cles and work­sta­tions and 70 per­cent of ex­ec­u­tive of­fices are un­oc­cu­pied. On top of that, 50 per­cent of the U.S. work­force holds a job that is com­pat­i­ble with at least par­tial tele­work. If the av­er­age use of workspace is 50 per­cent, then the com­pany is wast­ing $4,000 to $7,000 per year for each em­ployee. For com­pa­nies, of­fice space is the big­gest of­fice ex­pense, and that’s in in­tan­gi­ble spirit.

For bet­ter or worse, the Amer­i­can land­scape is loaded with the mas­sive un­tapped man­made re­source known as ‘ of­fice space.’ The rise of mo­bile work­force, self-em­ploy­ment, and sky­high of­fice costs are fu­el­ing de­mand for shared of­fice space in busi­ness dis­tricts like the Fi­nan­cial District in Man­hat­tan and San Fran­cisco, Ca­nary Wharf in London and Beijing Cen­tral Busi­ness District in China. To turn the spend­ing into a util­i­tar­ian re­source, com­pa­nies are now tap­ping into the idea of den­si­fi­ca­tion – re­duc­ing foot­print per em­ployee. The un­der­ly­ing fun­da­men­tals sug­gest that com­pa­nies in the near term will be able to cap­i­tal­ize on grow­ing in­ter­est sur­round­ing the Third Place model. Our Cover Story, ‘Burn­ers Turn Earn­ers,’ takes a look at the utopia where com­pa­nies are us­ing the ex­ist­ing frame­work to pro­vide in­cred­i­bly unique op­por­tu­nity to the em­ployee, the lap­top en­tre­pre­neur, and de­clut­ter the un­needed, un­used be­long­ings. Plunge In!

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