It’s not just about money anymore
“If you go back in history the decision about where a company would move was always a financial decision, with the aim being to have the lowest occupancy cost,” says Chris Hynes, Head of Office and Industrial Leasing at Dexus.
It was made by the people who controlled the money, such as the chief executive officer (CEO) or the chief financial officer, he adds.
But fast-forward to the present day and it is a very different story.
Attraction, retention and engagement of staff is critical, says Mr Hynes, and this is what now drives the decision for a new workplace.
As a result there is a lot more consultation with various stakeholders about where and what the new space should have, and much more consideration given to the wants and needs of workers.
“What’s happened over the past 10 years is that the non-financial side of the equation is having a greater voice in the decision-making process,” says Mr Hynes.
“It’s now not just about what’s cheapest, but what’s the best thing for a business and its staff?
“The human resources and the strategy teams are getting involved in helping to assess the right property decision, and there is a whole industry of workplace consultants that has effectively been created to assist those companies that haven’t got those resources in-house.”
There are outliers, Mr Hynes says, where company CEOs make executive decisions about a new office, but by and large the new norm is to have a collaborative decision-making process.
“It’s about getting everyone around a table and having a discussion, where they would never have been at that table years ago,” he says.