“Our biggest concern was the cost of our office and that money spent on rent going to waste if the office was sat empty.”
58% of London businesses whose employees are in the office between two to three days a week, are losing up to £190,000 a year by leaving their office space deserted.
Pod Talent, have a 2,200 square foot office located at the Old Street roundabout and a 24-strong workforce. After the pandemic, 95% of the employees wanted to move to a hybrid way of working, which presented CEO, Lucy Morgan with a major issue.
For two days each week, 32 desks, 3 meeting rooms, a living room area and kitchen in their office would be empty and moreover, they were tied to an eight-year lease on the space.
We at Space32 brokered a deal between Pod Talent and PrettyGreen Group, a creative communications agency with a “Work From Anywhere” policy. Now, PrettyGreen Group uses the office as creative collaboration space on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and the Pod Talent team have meetings, team events and socials alongside doing the day job on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays.
By becoming a ‘hybrid landlord’ – a business that shares their office with another occupier on the days they don’t need, Pod Talent generated £100,000 in additional revenue, and CEO, Lucy Morgan, knew that a proportion of this surplus cash had to go towards helping the people at the heart of the business, the employees.
To help their staff navigate the cost-of-living crisis every employee in the business received a £2,000 basic salary increase, in addition to standard salary reviews. All salary bandings were increased by the same amount, meaning that any new employees also received the same benefit.
The remaining revenue allowed Pod Talent to invest further in its employees by ensuring staff continue to have all the right equipment at home, and furthermore, it means the business has extra profit to hire more people, invest in technologies and much more.
Lucy Morgan is encouraging London businesses to become hybrid landlords and share the profits with their employees to help them through the cost-of-living crisis.
Lucy Morgan, MD of Pod Talent, said: “Once we had experienced home working, we knew we’d never go back to the office 5 days a week; it just wasn’t what our people wanted, and we had found lots of other benefits to home working as well. Our biggest concern was the cost of our office and that money spent on rent going to waste if the office was sat empty.
“It was a natural decision to pass on this benefit to our team, the cost-of-living crisis is a key concern right now as it’s a key concern of our employees. Businesses throughout London should be looking at our model and acting, employees are at the heart of every business and business leaders should be doing everything they can to ensure their welfare during this time of crisis.”
Our CEO, and Founder Jon Dweck, said: “We know that 88% of London businesses are not in the office full time, therefore 88% of London business leaders have the power to make a decision that could positively impact their employees’ lives. In this uncertain period, where the cost-of-living crisis continues to impact people across the country, business leaders can pass a proportion of these savings directly onto their employees.”
“As an example, if the average sized London office team of 41 employees is in the office for the average amount of 2.5 days, they could save £153,750 each year by changing to the hybrid office model. Giving each employee a £2,000 pay rise from this additional income to help with the rising costs of energy prices and food would still leave more than £70,000 in savings for the business.”