WHO WOULD HAVE THOUGHT WE MISS OUR WORK COLLEAGUES?.

There is a lot of talk about whether companies are going to need as much office space going forward. This is against a background where employees have got used to working from home and some employers see an opportunity for making future savings on the cost of premises. There’s lots to think about from both the employee and employer’s points of view.

I attended a local Business Leaders briefing recently. The large corporations represented (all on big business parks) said this is an issue their businesses are looking at actively and if staff choose to continue to work from home (as they think will happen) then their head offices will leave their buildings as soon as they are able to. This led on to a discussion about the resulting need for “pod accommodation” to hold face-to-face meetings.

Predicting the death of the office is premature. I spoke to two of my colleagues last week while we were in the office for various reasons and both said they missed coming in and engaging with colleagues for both work and social reasons. Even though I have a great set up at home, any attraction of working there is wearing thin particularly as it blurs the important distinction between work and home.

Another related point that came up in our Corporate & Commercial meeting last week concerns the transactions we are working on now. Clients are paying far greater attention to property liabilities and assessing what space is required for the target business going forward. In practice, there is not very much a purchaser can do if it is acquiring a company that has property commitments. However, in two of the cases we are dealing with, the purchasers have tried to negotiate the price down on the basis the property liabilities are more than the company needs.

One to watch and see how it develops but too early to say whether the office is dead.

The contents of this article are intended as guidance for readers. It can be no substitute for specific advice. Consequently we cannot accept responsibility for this information, errors or matters affected by subsequent changes in the law, or the content of any website referred to in this article. © Mundays LLP

Insights.

Advice for house hunters #SolicitorChat with The Law Society
14th January, 2021

Purchasing a property is likely to be one of the biggest transactions you will make in your life and the process can be complicated. Thomas Healy answered a few questions…

To injunct or not to injunct?
14th January, 2021

The possibility of an immediate costs order on an interlocutory injunction application to enforce restrictive covenants against a former employee, has for some time been a material factor.

Making a Will in 2021 #SolicitorChat with The Law Society
7th January, 2021

2020 produced many unexpected events and Michael Brierley discussed how you can help protect yourself from the unexpected by making a Will with The Law Society and other firms for…

A note from Neale Andrews
5th January, 2021

In line with the latest Government guidance and to ensure the safety of our clients and staff, we are for the greater part operating the firm remotely. However, we have…