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Bisnow Readers Split On Work From Home's Future

Almost a third of Bisnow readers surveyed say they expect to shrink their company's office footprint post-pandemic, but 45% said the amount of space they currently have will remain unchanged.

Eight-hundred seventy-seven people responded to a Bisnow online poll between May 19 and May 27. Questions ranged from readers' thoughts on working from home and how remote work might change with a worker's life stage to how flexible office options attract talent.

Bisnow Readers Split On Work From Home's Future

When Bisnow looked at the demographics of our respondents, the nearly 900 people surveyed were again evenly split, with 48% saying they have children at home and 51% saying they do not.

Of those, a quarter were between ages 35 and 45, 24% were between 45 and 55, another 24% were 55 to 65, and 17% were between 25 and 35. Only 5% were older than 65. A few respondents left the question blank, accounting for that remaining 5%.

Reactions to workers relocating to at least some remote office options full or part time after the coronavirus pandemic subsides have been mixed. Some office landlords have said they doubt employees will enjoy working from their homes forever, while other polls have shown a wholehearted embracing of the trend.

A recent report found that at least some of those workers may want to stay away from the office permanently:

By the end of April, 69% of companies had plans to shrink their office footprint in accordance with increased remote work, according to a CoreNet Global survey. Similarly, a survey of over 300 chief financial officers by Gartner, an S&P 500 research and advisory company, found that 74% of companies intend to shift at least 5% of their workforces to remote work. For most of those companies, at least 10% or 20% of workers are expected to remain remote.

Our poll found that Bisnow reader workplaces remain evenly divided on working remotely: 50% of respondents said employees had asked to work from home after the coronavirus crisis passes, while 49% said workers had not asked for that flexibility.

Readers were united in responding that having a work-from-home option is a solid perk, with 78% responding that having flexible work arrangements helps attract top talent.

Some competitive industries, like the tech sector, have begun to bet on that trend. Twitter, which has its headquarters in San Francisco's Mid-Market, has already transitioned to offering permanent work-from-home options, while Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said earlier this month that the company expects to allow 50% of its workforce to work remotely in the next five to 10 years.

Twitter told Bisnow that it has no plans to minimize it office holdings, but Facebook has already trimmed back its plans for at least one office development.

Close to 40% of respondents said that the ability to work remotely was very important to them, with a further 11% saying they would not accept a job offer if it didn't offer that flexibility.

More than half said that they did not believe asking to work from home would change as a worker moved into a different life stage, but 47% believed it would fade as employees age.

When asked if they planned on changing their office footprint in the next five years, 45% replied no, 27% responded yes and 14% said they remained undecided. A further 12% said they are considering expanding the amount of office space their company has.

Some recent reporting has found that office brokers and large landlords are betting that the need for more distance in offices to keep workers safe might offset any major disruption caused by more people working from home. You can read more about that here.

Seeing anything here that you'd like to weigh in on? We'd love to hear your thoughts, so reach out to riley.mcdermid@bisnow.com with how the work-from-home movement has been affecting you.