ENTER THE BRAND-NEW HUB-AND-SPOKE MODEL
Companies no longer want to waste money on office space when everyone is working from home—but they do want to make space available when workers need to come in. Enter the hub-and-spoke model.
Many offices remain closed, and employees have settled in for an extended and indefinite stint of working from home. And though some companies are only just realising how much of their work can be done remotely, many workers are eager to get back in the office, at least some of the time. A recent survey by the JLL company Big Red Rooster found that 94% of employees want the option to return to a physical office, and that remote work should augment but not replace the traditional office.
Companies are facing the quandary of how not to waste money on office space when people are working from home most of the time, but also how office space can be available when workers want or need to come in. Enter the hub-and-spoke model.
“Many corporate occupiers are saying let us have hubs across the region, north, south, east and west so that people can have their office close to their home if and when they want to go to the office.
A smaller central office may still stay in the capital core, but it will be augmented by several smaller offices or a coworking space near where their employees live. Instead of leasing a big office building, or a whole floor, companies may start renting out smaller chunks of real estate that are spread across a broader geography.
The hub and spoke model offers easy commutable opportunities for people to gather without having to get on mass transit. Pre COVID-19 there was an increase in suburban leasing, mostly for cost reasons, but now we are also seeing it for access reasons.
The pandemic has led to more companies thinking about where their workers want and need to be, companies are increasingly looking for ways to reduce their unused office space while maintaining a physical presence when they need it.
Whether its employers or employees who want to make sure the office experience is part of the job, spokes in other locations can make it easier and cheaper for companies to provide office space.
Compact spaces for fewer workers are less expensive than leasing a large space in the city, for a company to sign a large office lease in the city is a tough decision to make because there’s so much uncertainty.
Being smart about the office space may mean shrinking it down to a core hub and using spokes when and where they are needed.
Spaces such as the brand-new Hill Hub in Dartford, Kent is a legacy centre, a co-working space that is set within the existing building of the Police Station. It houses a wide range of modes of working from hot desks to private offices as well as meeting rooms. The beautiful layout and conversion of this space sets it apart not only as a co-working space but also as a business incubator, a space to engage with local community and a place for local businesses to network and thrive.