How to Structure the Workplace after COVID


Along with practically everything else, the COVID-19 pandemic upended a lot of conventional workplace wisdom. Organizations that had previously sworn off working from home suddenly found themselves on Zoom calls, peering into the living rooms of colleagues. Many are now considering what comes next. Should we stay at home forever? Return to the office? Or adopt some new workplace paradigm?

Selecting the right workplace model for a given organization involves a complicated set of trade-offs between flexibility and structure, real estate and culture. To help understand these choices, we surveyed 800 Australian office workers, reviewed the latest academic research, and spoke to clients currently deep in these deliberations. What follows is a review of our findings, examining each workplace model in turn. While we’ve presented these models as distinct ideas, in reality there aren’t fixed boundaries between them. Companies may mix and match, taking ideas from some and tweaking others. But we think these five categories offer a pretty useful starting point for thinking about what a post-COVID workplace model might look like.

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