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  • Writer's pictureColliers | Columbus

OFFICE WORKPLACE TRENDS IN 2024

Written by: Collin Fitzgerald

Collin specializes in research capabilities, providing support for the Colliers Columbus Office, Industrial and Retail groups. He is responsible for executing data reports, maintaining a commercial property database, reporting quarterly trends, performing data analysis and utilizing statistical information to predict future behavior in the market. Keep reading for his take on workplace trends in 2024.

The way we work has been changing rapidly in recent years, with the pandemic and technology being the driving forces behind these shifts. The structure and way traditional 9-to-5 jobs are being performed has changed over the past few years due to the hybrid model. It’s essential for employers to adapt to these trends to improve their company culture, retain employees and avoid complacency in the workplace. Looking ahead to 2024, we can expect to see even further development of these trends, which will continue to shape the future of work.


Trend 1: Right Sizing Office Space

These anticipated trends are closely linked to tenants adapting to hybrid or new working situations. Due to the adaptation of a hybrid workforce by many companies, efficiency is the key when it comes to their office space. As a result, tenants will display caution regarding suite sizes, focusing on the practicality and flexibility of the space instead. Additionally, companies will downsize the amount of space needed, eliminating unnecessary space, and reducing expenses. Many major companies in Central Ohio are following this trend. L Brands has been exploring options to right-size their office space to adapt to changing workplace dynamics. With a focus on flexibility and efficiency, they are reassessing their office layouts and square footage requirements to support a hybrid work model and enhance employee collaboration. In addition, Huntington Bank, based in Columbus, has been strategically right-sizing its office space to reflect shifting employee work preferences and optimize operational efficiency. By consolidating office locations and implementing flexible work policies, Huntington aims to create a more agile and cost-effective workplace environment.


Trend 2: Employee Experience

Organizations understand that the employee experience is key to developing retention and job satisfaction. Companies are looking for creative and resourceful ways to offer in-person collaboration and participation, especially as a lot of organizations have adopted a hybrid work model. Some examples include creating inviting common spaces, adding creative amenities, or hosting building events such as weekly food trucks or lobby festivities. Many offices are now being designed for collaboration with open think areas to allow employees and clients a richer experience. Organizations are creating office environments that support work/life balance, employee wellness, personal growth, and professional development in hopes to retain employees and make sure they are satisfied with their workspace.


Trend 3: Sustainable Working Practices

Another anticipated workplace trend in 2024 will be the implementation of sustainable workplace practices. Many tenants value the reduction of environmental impact in the workplace, opting for more sustainable practices by encouraging waste reduction, recycling and re-use of resources. This trend also includes educating property owners on improved cost-saving opportunities, including opting for more natural lighting in tenant workspaces, therefore decreasing demand for artificial light and saving on electricity costs.


Trend 4: Multi-Functional Workspaces

With more companies returning to the office on a full-time or hybrid basis, we will see a shift towards traditional offices or private ‘pods’ for noise reduction in lieu of open office concept throughout. For companies that are still mostly remote or heavy hybrid, we expect more ‘hot-desking’, where employees claim a different open workspace every day rather than maintaining an assigned seat. Lastly, we anticipate increased rearrangeable workplace furniture, such as easy-to-maneuver tables and chairs.


Trend 5: AI Technology

Artificial intelligence (AI), particularly Generative AI (GenAI), is revolutionizing workplaces and business alike. Some AI tools are as simple as occupancy sensors that detect the presence of people in a room/area and adjust lighting, temperature and ventilation accordingly. Gen AI tools are rapidly advancing to provide efficient solutions for most tasks and fields of work. Despite the advancement of AI, there are limitations that will still require human intervention, innovation and creativity.


"The current workplace trends create a need for experienced professionals assisting throughout the construction process, now more than ever. Designing and constructing for value and efficiency will enable opportunities for tenants and landlords to capitalize in the market.”

-Trey Hafer Senior Project Manager, Colliers | Columbus


These expected trends focus on workplace changes that impact the way we conduct business and our day-to-day workplace interactions. These trends will also assist companies in modifying their work environments to attract and retain top talent that may otherwise be lost to businesses that have adapted to the evolving workplace.


 

For more information on workplace trends, case studies in tenant behavior, tenant migration patterns, interviews with industry leaders and predictions for what’s to come in Columbus office space, check out our 2024 Columbus Office Tenant Report!






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