The pandemic has accelerated changes in how work is performed, what the workforce expects and the role of the workplace. As the world’s preeminent real estate services firm, CBRE aims to lead our industry through these changes via our expert counsel and the example we set with our own real estate decisions.
With upcoming lease expirations in Southern California, we have a unique opportunity to pilot potential future solutions. Our Workplace team, which advises our clients on creating their Workplaces of the Future, recently conducted an intensive three-month project for CBRE’s own SoCal offices with a goal of creating a roadmap to the future. We are excited to share our biggest ideas from this process, and we hope this inspires others to join us in the journey of shaping the future workplace.
-Lew Horne, President, Pacific-Southwest
Our Process Engaged Various Levels of Our Workforce & Leadership, and We Generated Hundreds of Unique Ideas
Our 7 Favorite Ideas Highlight These Key Themes
Big Idea #1
Health & Well-Being
Incentivize and gamify participation
in well-being programs via healthcare
discounts, competitions, wearable tech, etc.
The world’s first WELL-Certified office was CBRE’s Downtown LA location
completed in 2013, and since then we have remained dedicated to
supporting our employees’ health and well-being through the workplaces
we provide. We continue to challenge ourselves and our clients to
innovate and support well-being through not only passive, architectural
features but also active program and events-driven initiatives.
Read more about CBRE's recommendations for addressing health & well-being in the workplace in our article: Top 12 Priorities for Workplace Well-being.
Big Idea #2
Support the hybrid workforce with meeting
room technology that enhances the feeling
of being present while operating remotely.
We’ve likely all experienced the frustration of a “mixed presence”
meeting, with some participants meeting in person and others joining
virtually. Struggles with audio quality, room view, conversation flow,
and information sharing are typical. Solving for these challenges will
be key for a future of work that is more mobile and global.
There is a significant
amount of technology
disruption that will have
a lasting impact on real
estate. Learn more from
CBRE’s technology experts
Big Idea #3
Design & Aesthetics
Pursue a WOW factor–e.g., adaptive reuse,
double volume space, amazing views, retail
amenities, outdoor terrace, etc.
As more occupiers explore a choice-based approach to supporting
remote work in the future, their goal will be to motivate rather
than mandate employees to work on-site. Creating a functional
environment is a necessity, but high-performing workplaces will also
address emotional and human elements. In a real estate world often
distracted by efficiency metrics, we shouldn’t forget the power of
beautiful design to influence the office experience.
Did you know that CBRE’s
LA North office was an
adaptive reuse project?
Learn more about its
features in our video:
CBRE Workplace 360: LA North – The Temple.
Big Idea #4
Empower a network of operations
managers, concierges, and technology
to provide a consistent and elevated
employee and visitor experience.
Changing tenant expectations are driving a unique, hospitality inspired
convergence in employee experience. The office, more than
ever, must anticipate customer needs, provide comfort and flexibility
and most importantly, differentiate in order to compete for occupancy
against the allure and convenience of remote work.
CBRE’s Host offering
provides a human-centered
experience enhanced by
technology to ensure that
employees feel welcomed,
cared for, and comfortable.
Big Idea #5
Culture & Community
Adopt Culture KPIs to measure success and
a formal governance structure to manage
and improve on culture initiatives.
Examples of culture-related KPIs (or “key performance indicators”)
include employee engagement/satisfaction (e.g., Net Promoter
Scores), company tenure and turnover rates and survey performance
on questions around feeling invested in work, feeling part of a
community or having friends at work.
Change management is key
to driving positive impacts
on culture when new
workplace strategies are
explored. Learn more about
CBRE’s Change Strategy &
from our Workplace team.
Big Idea #6
Utilize coworking spaces as an employee
perk by giving people the option to
touchdown at a location that may be better
for their day or commute.
Central business districts, including the metros of Southern California,
have a reputation for horrendous traffic, and commute times are a
subject of great concern for employees. Granting access to a network
of alternative office spaces can alleviate this problem and provide a
home-away-from-home for employees who often travel to client sites
across the region.
86% of recently surveyed
occupiers plan to
incorporate flex office
space in their real estate
strategies. Learn more on CBRE’s Agile Real Estate Knowledge Hub.
Big Idea #7
Design for all people, including those
with visible or invisible disabilities,
neurodiverse individuals and all identities.
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) is vital to CBRE’s success as a
global company and can be critically supported by creating a work
environment that removes barriers and is actively welcoming. An
inclusive workplace should strive to provide varied work settings and
accessibility-enhancing technologies to reflect the spectrum of needs
and preferences of a diverse workforce.
Do diversity initiatives
make financial sense?
CBRE’s Chief Diversity
Officer, Tim Dismond,
explains why the answer is
a resounding “yes!” in this episode of CBRE’s podcast,
The Weekly Take.