November 2021 Newsletter: U.S. Office Capacity & The Great Resignation

by Chris Brablc November 23rd, 2021

This month's articles will look at improving the occupant experience, office design flexibility, trends in corporate real estate, the current state of office capacity and investigating the great resignation.

We hope this content is helpful as you build out and execute your return to the office plans with employees.

Register for the Human Centric Office 2021 - Complimentary Live Event

On December 8th from 1-5 PM ET, we'll be hosting a free digital event, The Human Centric Office 2021, focused on improving the occupant experience.

We have a tremendous group of speakers lined up including Michael Beckerman from CREtech, Felipe Pla from Fidelity, Thijs van der Burgt from HqO, Zach Dunn from Robin, Jeff Wachs from Northwestern Mutual, Kelly Colon from Cresa, Nellie Hayat from Density, James Whalen from Boston Properties, Dave McGuinness from Openpath, Simon Davis from Impec Group, Kimberly Castle from Buildingi, Patrick McGrath from Savills, Minas Apelian from Saint-Gobain, Matt Giffune from Occupier and much more.

A few things to note about registering:

  • We will be planting a tree on your behalf for every registration. 
  • All sessions will be recorded and every registrant will receive the recordings after the event. So if you can't make the live event, it's still worth signing up.
  • Our partners (HqO, Robin, Density, Saint-Gobain, Openpath and Occupier) will be providing raffle prizes for attendees.


One size doesn’t fit all: Employees’ needs are changing workspaces -

Great article on what organizations are doing to better design buildings and workplaces for the post-pandemic office environment. There are some interesting thoughts on return to work policies, on-going need for collaboration spaces and overall employee wellbeing.

A few items of note include:

  • For example, M Moser’s 10,000-square-foot Manhattan headquarters in the Woolworth Building was designed in 2018 and revamped in 2020 to create a healthier workplace. Employees do not have assigned seats but rather choose a place to work every morning. Instead of sitting at desks, they sit at mobile tables; their portable electronic equipment is powered by portable battery packs.
  • Christofely said he believes companies “must move the dial on how much space is dedicated to individual versus collaborative work. The social aspect of work is one of the most important parts of the physical workplace.” His firm’s “more progressive” clients are dramatically reducing individual workspaces from 70% of the total to 30%, with 70% now collaborative; at least one client is dedicating only 10% of its workspaces to individuals.


13 Real Estate Investment Trends To Watch As Work From Home Continues - Fortune

The proliferation of work from home and greater flexibility on where they employees work has and will continue to shift how we view and operate our corporate real estate as organizations. This article contains 13 short ideas on the impact that hybrid work will have for corporate real estate, facilities and workplace leaders.

A few ideas of note include:

  • People working from home still have the desire and need for certain in-office amenities. If I need to print a proposal for a client, I want a high-quality printer. If I want to host a strategy workshop, I need a good place with A/V systems, whiteboards and ample workspace to do that. A flexible option to access those things would be very appealing. - Martha Holler, ShinePR
  • In addition to flexible spaces, hospitality is at an all-time high. Flexible space is actually indicative of a larger trend for more hospitable experiences at work. This will become increasingly important as more tenants return to the office and expect more personalized, consumer-first benefits in the workplace. It'll increase property value and help attract and retain tenants in our modern landscape. - Chase Garbarino, HqO


The great return: US office capacity hits all time high since pre-pandemic - Robin

Robin has been keeping a close watch on office utilization over the past few months and recently their research has shown a general trend of increased office utilization over the past few months. Highly recommend you check out the article for their interesting visualizations.

A few highlights include:

  • The average US office capacity is now at 25% - the highest since the pandemic started.
  • Boston and New York surpassed the national average of employees returning to work (19%) with Boston seeing a 34% increase and NY seeing a 22% increase.


The Great Resignation of 2021: Are 30% of workers really going to quit? - Tech Republic

There has been a lot made around the increase in worker movement out of the workforce as well as moving from new opportunities. This article explores the on-going trends with worker movement and a look at the underlying causes.

Stats of note include:

  • The Microsoft Work Trend Index found that 40% of people want to change jobs this year. A survey of workers in the U.K. and Ireland put the number at 38% and a similar U.S. survey found 26% of workers are planning to leave their current job over the next few months. 
  • The quits rate is the number of quits during the entire month as a percent of total employment. The overall number has not changed dramatically over the last five years. The rate was 1.5% in March 2020, 2.3% in 2019 and 2018 and 2.1% in 2017. It was 2.4% in March 2021.


corporate real estate workplace experience newsletter real estate trends Chase Garbarino Robin powered US office capacity The Great Resignation


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