Space Three Two

Why empty office space is so bad for business

Why empty office space is so bad for business

Don't ignore empty office space. It's so bad for business

Hybrid work is here to stay. That’s according to a recent McKinsey report “Empty Spaces and Hybrid Places’ 2023.  And a recent survey from Towergate Health and Protection reveals that 91% of UK businesses have a hybrid policy in place.

In April 2024, flexible working was further endorsed by government legislation, supporting employees who want to avoid the 5 day commute or inflexible working hours. According to Business and Trade Minister, Kevin Hollinrake, this new policy will enhance employee happiness and wellbeing.

But what does flexible and hybrid working mean for office space? Even office buildings that are in use now see more sporadic traffic. They may be bustling on a Wednesday, but by Friday, they’re a ghost town. Data from global workplace insights company, Leesman shows 74% of UK employees plan to be in the office two or fewer days a week. 

This means many businesses are leasing more space than they’re using – and experts say there are few signs companies now need the workspaces they had pre-pandemic. 

That’s a big problem for firms, who are reporting profit loss due to unoccupied space.

But the office space problem goes further. Hybrid working means that businesses who have left long lease offices are now also struggling. They’ve tried fully remote working and witnessed its effect on disconnected teams and individual isolation.

They’ve tested serviced offices and found they lack soul and value for money. Many are sitting in co-working spaces, with seats filling up fast and costs rising rapidly as the team and their desk grow in number. And some are still occupying large workspaces that now they don’t use all the time. 

At Space32, we’re on a mission to change the state of the office status quo. 

Our unique marketplace matches Office Hosts who have desirable office space to spare, with businesses seeking a Hosted Office -  with the best vibes baked in! 

It’s a win-win formula that fits with the way we know business teams want to work.

Here’s 3 reasons we created Space32.

1. People First. Having the right workspace is critical for good business health. A vibrant workplace environment fosters collaboration, creativity and a sense of community. This is compromised when you’re working in the wrong office environment or space is under occupied, creating a soulless and isolating effect. 

All of these experiences have a negative impact on team culture, motivation and wellbeing. And exact greater costs on talent retention and attraction. Not to mention the negative external perception of a half empty workspace.

Selecting a Hosted Office means you’re maintaining a flexible hybrid work culture whilst getting a workspace with great design and vibes ready made! And for Office Hosts? Their teams  get to stay in and make brilliant use of the space they’ve lovingly created. 

2. Optimise income! We’re helping Office Hosts and Space Seekers optimise income with truly minimum effort! In 2023 our Office Hosts secured £2m in profit. And our Hosted Office clients saved 50% in traditional running costs.  

Paying for unused space means wasted money that could be allocated to other productive areas of the business. 

77p out of every £1 is wasted on unused office space. On the flipside, sharing office space - whether floors, desks or hours will increase your bottom line. As one of our Hosted Office clients shared “ By the end of the year, our bottom line was £192,000 stronger”.

3. Planet Positive. We all need to be more mindful of how our businesses impact the health of our planet. Office Hosts and Hosted Office occupiers help reduce building emissions. How? The effect of unused office space or undertaking new office fit outs significantly increases polluting emissions and wastes energy. Empty offices consume unnecessary energy. And this pointless energy consumption leads to higher greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. That's bad for our urban environments, the planet and human health.

So whether you're a BCorp or simply a business concerned about the environment, sharing workspace and office days - full time or part time, reduces building related emissions and air pollution.

And we’ve left the icing on the cake till now….. Our entire onboarding process is truly stress-free. We provide a comprehensive service that includes the provision of legal templates for office sharing, supported liaison with landlords, space marketing for Office Hosts and viewings for those seeking Hosted Offices. We also advise on how best to divide the space and available days.  

As hybrid working becomes normalised, organisations that fail to adapt may struggle. Don’t let this be you!