Only 15 percent of office space in Switzerland is being used
Only 15 percent of office space in Switzerland is being used as workers are reluctant to return, according to data from Locatee.
Return to the office in Switzerland slower than expected
The new data shows that occupancy rates in offices went from 70,2 percent at the start of the pandemic to 15 percent in August 2021. The numbers did see a rise of 43 percent during the lifting of restrictions in the summer of 2020, but this rise hasn’t materialised in the most recent relaxation.
The occupancy rate is twice that of the United Kingdom but significantly lower than Germany, where a quarter of office space is currently being used. “Returning to the office is much more difficult than going to the home office,” said Locatee founder Thomas Kessler. The return to the office has been slow as companies and new businesses struggle to set their own policies around home working.
Locatee found the new figures by tracking the amount of computer output that came from the offices of large companies in over 60 nations. They found that despite initial enthusiasm to return last summer, the same cannot be said for 2021.
Low occupancy an opportunity to improve offices in Switzerland
Alongside the new figures are announcements by many international companies around the world that they have delayed their official “return to the office." The US branch of Credit Suisse, a famous Swiss bank, and Google have delayed their official return to November, while Amazon and Facebook have postponed their return to next year.
Although occupancy rates remain low, Kessler noted that the slow return will give companies and entrepreneurs the opportunity to improve their office environment. "In a hybrid working world, the role of the office will change," said Kessler, who observes that the office has become more of a meeting place rather than a place of work.
In a new COVID world, where home working has become standard practise for most jobs, he concluded that "it will now be a matter of finding the right balance between the needs and satisfaction of the employees and the costs for the office space."