Between the ever-evolving landscape of commercial real estate and the wider adoption of hybrid working strategies, landlords face a challenge in attracting and retaining businesses with the certainty they have done in the past.
Over the last few years, a paradigm shift towards innovative office design has emerged as a pivotal strategy. Beyond the conventional metrics of square footage and location, businesses and their employees are increasingly prioritising other areas, such as sustainability, technology and employee wellbeing – factors that not only elevate the intrinsic value of commercial property, but also set the stage for a future-proof investment.
In such a competitive landscape, landlords must focus on offering spaces that work harder for businesses, with an innovative design that fosters productivity, drives culture and evolves as a company’s needs evolve. With that in mind, here are three key areas that should be taken into consideration when assessing the value of commercial buildings.
Over the last few years, sustainability has emerged as one of the leading trends in the construction industry. The wider adoption of sustainable habits, coupled with global efforts to reach Net Zero by 2050, has led to a growing demand for premium office space in London and other major cities, with that demand currently outweighing supply.
Sustainable design isn’t just about using recycled materials. There are multiple elements to be considered that relate to the procurement of materials, supply chains and manufacturing processes. Numerous accreditation schemes provide frameworks as to how sustainable buildings should be delivered, with guidance on energy-efficient LED lighting, air ventilation and waste management as just a small selection of those components.
It’s a big commitment, but one that landlords can reap the rewards from. Recent data suggests that properties with high energy-efficiency ratings and sustainability accreditations (such as BREEAM-certified) are currently achieving around 10% higher rental value on average than other buildings. Additionally, while the upfront costs may be higher, sustainable buildings have a longer lifespan and long-term financial benefits through reduced operational costs.
Incorporating sustainable elements into office design provides landlords with a huge opportunity to meet the tenant demand for greener buildings. This not only adds a competitive edge, but also bolsters the long-term value of the property in an era where sustainability is a key decision-making factor for businesses.
See how we helped Alfred Equities to maximise their commercial asset at One Portsoken with sustainability measures such as BREAAM.
The traditional 9-to-5 office is morphing into a flexible landscape propelled by the rise of hybrid work models, and businesses are demanding smart, tech-enabled work environments that foster efficiency, connectivity, and adaptability. Catering to a dispersed workforce is no longer a bonus for landlords, but a necessity.
Whether through advanced communication systems or state-of-the-art security features, tech-enabled offices enhance both functionality and desirability. In fact, to prove the latter, a recent JLL Survey on Global Real Estate Technology revealed that 91% of businesses are willing to pay a premium for tech-enabled offices.
That is perhaps due to their adaptability in this new world of work. For example, seamless remote collaboration tools are blurring the lines between physical and virtual, allowing teams to brainstorm, share ideas, and present without geographical barriers. Imagine huddle spaces equipped with high-definition video conferencing and interactive whiteboards, or dedicated “quiet zones” optimised for focused individual work.
As technology continues to shape the way we work, properties equipped with the latest innovations stand out, drawing higher demand and making particular buildings the preferred choice for innovative businesses seeking a tech-enabled environment.
For more inspiration on tech-enabled workspaces that empower hybrid teams, delve into Oktra’s Guide to the Hybrid Workplace, where you’ll discover how cutting-edge solutions can transform your property into a hub for a thriving, connected workforce.
As we’ve settled into the normality of hybrid working arrangements, it’s become clear that businesses need the office to be an experience for employees in order to attract and retain the best talent – and a large component of that is promoting wellbeing. Modern offices need to prioritise the health, comfort, and productivity of teams, with natural lighting, ergonomic furniture and green spaces high on the list of employee (and business) priorities.
Mental health charity MIND published a report that stated 60% of employees say they’d feel more motivated and more likely to recommend their organisation as a good place to work if their employer took action to support mental wellbeing. This reality, paired with the autonomy many employees now have over how and where they work, means that working environments must focus on wellbeing to be successful in the long run.
Investing in employee wellbeing fosters a happier and more productive workforce and can position an office as a destination for top talent. Much like sustainability, companies seeking spaces that prioritise employee health are willing to invest more in such environments, driving up the value of properties designed with wellbeing in mind.
Innovative office design is not just about the aesthetics of a space, it’s a strategic investment in the lasting value of commercial properties. By embracing sustainability, integrating cutting-edge technology, and prioritising employee wellbeing, landlords can future-proof their assets in a competitive market.
As businesses evolve, so too must the spaces they inhabit. This forward-thinking approach to office design is a key driver in ensuring that commercial properties not only meet the needs of today but remain valuable assets in the years to come.
The Scale Portfolio explores how we collaborate with landlords and professional teams to deliver large-scale design and build projects across the UK. Download to find out more.DOWNLOAD