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Working Assumptions

Make Way for the Great Refurb: Office Design Joins the Conversation on Revamping Work

Three key issues dominate the way offices look and feel: safety, sustainability and social space.



Photographer: Miodrag Ignjatovic/E+/Getty Images

Seismic changes have been triggered in worldwide corporate real estate, office design and management systems over the last three years in a shift as profound as the Great Resignation: Let’s call it the Great Refurb.

The working assumption that offices will return to the old five-day-nine-to-five week way has turned out to be wrong. Equally off was the idea that remote working would replace the office wherever possible. The reality lies somewhere in the middle, mirroring the halfway mark reached for office occupancy in key US cities. The focus is now moving from purely organizing patterns of working time to the design of the workplace itself.