The fourth industrial revolution involving robotics, artificial intelligence and distributed ledger technologies is transforming not just work, but also work spaces.
This was a main theme during AMP’s Amplify event, an annual opportunity to bring together people and businesses with a view on how our world is changing.
One of this year’s keynote speakers was demographer Bernard Salt, whose research explores major trends in our society. Digital disruption is a key one, and he noted how this is driving demand for knowledge workers, with a 46 per cent rise in skilled workers between the 2011 and 2016 census.
In today’s work environment, staff need space to collaborate with other team members, colleagues, guest and clients, in offices, lobbies and third spaces in buildings. As a result, companies are increasingly focused on designing workspaces that genuinely foster connectivity, enhance staff wellbeing and inspire innovation.
This has clear commercial benefits: it drives an organisation’s ability to attract and retain talent, helps to increase productivity, and assists in creating enduring partnerships between building owners, managers and their customers.
Implications for investors
There are now many different generations in the workplace, all with diverse requirements. At the same time, different work spaces inspire people in different ways. But no matter what the work space looks like, it must be designed to drive productivity and culture and assist in attracting and retaining talent.
It’s important to understand different fitouts suit different work environments: open plan, design thinking labs, closed offices, quiet spaces and wellness areas all have a home within a corporate fitout.
So, when businesses design fitouts, it’s important to ensure there’s an appropriate balance between different types of spaces. For instance, the finance team will have different accommodation requirements to the sales team, and businesses and buildings need to cater for all team members.
As the technological revolution and demographic changes have gathered pace, savvy fund and property managers have focused on understanding customers’ changing needs, what’s impacting their industries and workforce, and how their business model is evolving.
At AMP Capital we are creating environments that support collaboration, drawing on feedback from staff working across our customers’ operations to inform how the workspace is designed. This focus allows us to create productive work environments that attract profitable, growing businesses as customers. Importantly, it also ensures office buildings’ industrial facilities and retail environments are flexible enough to respond to the changing needs of customers as their businesses evolve.
Our customers want to partner with fund and property managers that meet these changing needs. As a result, managers that consistently deliver exceptional real estate experiences for customers are those that develop long-term partnerships, along with income and returns for investors, now and into the future. This customer focus is an integral part of how we ensure success at AMP Capital.
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