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Flexible Workplace | Watch this space

flexible workspace, colliers blog

Join Patrick Gidney as he shares his experience in the Flexible Workspace sector and why this could be an interesting space to watch out for.


My professional experience has been in tenant representation, but most recently, I was working for IWG – the world’s largest flexible workspace provider. At Colliers, my role is to advise occupiers on their office strategy in Singapore, which in some instances will be implementing flex into their workplace offering.  

 blog ESS expert spotlight patrick gidney
Patrick Gidney, Senior Director, Occupier Services

Key players in the market are gearing up for growth again as the economy recovers, and the post-pandemic workplace is leading towards more hybrid ways of working, and we expect the market to accelerate further. Colliers Research forecasts a 5% growth in 2022 and 2023, and in my opinion, this is a very conservative number and here are some of the trends we can all expect.


Growth acceleration for the most established co-working operators

The more established co-working operators will see their growth accelerating due to their stronger financial positions. The past 18 months have been challenging from both an occupancy and pricing perspective, many smaller players are still focused on simply keeping their business going. However, the better-financed operators have rationalised costs, improved liquidity and are now able to take advantage of the growing demand.  


Consolidation of number of operators

Although the flexible workplace industry will grow by total sq ft, there will be a consolidation of the total number of operators in Singapore. With a strong mix of international, regional and local players, Singapore is the most competitive market for the flexible workspace in Asia. On top of that, many landlords also want a piece of the action. Naturally, not all will survive.  

flexible workspace, colliers blog

With already a great variety of products and brands, those with robust sales platforms and relationships with mainstream corporates will be best positioned to capture the demand. Unless the smaller players have a strong niche, this will inevitably lead to M&A opportunities across the industry.  

Demand for suburban locations will continue to grow
 

 With more hybrid ways of working and employees wanting to work closer to home, the demand for suburban locations will continue to grow. We can expect the operators will want to grow their networks across the island to meet this demand. Currently, 84% of centres are in the CBD, 13% in the City Fringe and only 3% in suburban areas. Although CBD will always represent the big piece of the pie with generally larger spaces, this will start to balance out.

 

So what does hybrid working mean for occupiers in Singapore? There is no one-size-fits-all solution, and it comes down to the organisation’s unique goals, the business functions located here and corporate culture. These will determine the best balance between office, work from home and co-working. This is a balancing act, especially since Singapore has a tight labour market with a great fight for talent. Jumping too far into either the work from home camp or all back to the office camps could have significant repercussions.  

We are increasingly advising clients on this, and some of our designed tools can help evaluate this. 

Interested in finding out more about flexible workspace? Listen to the full Colliers Singapore Property Insights Podcast – episode 5 | Flexible workspace in focus (10 minutes) below. 

 

  

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Patrick Gidney

Senior Director

Tenant Representation

Singapore

Patrick is a Senior Director in our Occupier Services Team in Singapore. Patrick's primary focus is building relationships with our occupier clients in Singapore and ensuring the delivery of memorable services to accelerate their success.  Patrick started joined Colliers' leadership team in 2021 to collaborate with the Occupier Services Team and drive exceptional results. 

Passionate about representing the interest of tenants, Patrick has been providing Tenant Representation services to clients for over 15 years. Patrick has been focusing on the Singapore market for over ten years and was previously based in Vietnam and London, where he trained as a Chartered Surveyor.  

Patrick most recently worked at a leading international flex space operator; this has given him unique insight into the co-working and serviced office industry. This will further strengthen our expertise and lead our clients into the future.  

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June Chua

Executive Director & Head of Tenant Representation

Tenant Representation

Singapore

June  heads up the Office Services team in Singapore, and is responsible for ensuring the  team's delivery of quality real estate advice and the execution of leasing transactions across the office and industrial markets.

June has 30 years of office and industrial leasing experience in Singapore, and has provided strategic advice to numerous MNCs  on their real estate requirements to meet the mid to long term business needs. She is equally well-versed in project marketing assignments, and has assisted various landlord clients to position their property to secure the optimal tenant mix for their properties.

 

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