What are top office tenants looking for in the next 6 months?

Flexible and collaborative workspaces with a focus on technology integration, employee well-being, and sustainability.

A partner message from The High Technology Facilities Group

The answer is flexible and collaborative workspaces with a focus on technology integration, employee well-being, and sustainability.

Office tenants are increasingly seeking spaces that can be easily modified and customized to meet their specific needs. This includes flexible layouts that accommodate different work styles, collaboration areas, and the ability to scale up or down as their business requirements change. Top office tenants are comparing their employees' needs against the office space to strike a balance of setups and amenities that will encourage employees back into the workplace.

1. The rise of AI

With the rise of AI, technology plays a crucial role in the modern workplace. Tenants are prioritizing spaces that offer seamless integration of digital tools and infrastructure. This includes high-speed internet connectivity, smart building features, video conferencing capabilities, meeting room booking systems, hot-desk booking and tracking, and advanced security systems. Certain landlords are taking note and providing phone apps to office tenants in the building – Oxford Properties operates Otto by Oxford, an app that enriches a tenant’s work-life experience in one easy app. From booking meeting rooms and discovering new events to ordering lattes, this type of app makes the office more functional and convenient.

2. Employee well-being

Employee well-being is a growing focus for company decision-makers, including how to promote work in-office. Companies seek spaces prioritizing natural light, indoor air quality, ergonomic furniture, fitness facilities, wellness programs, and outdoor access.  Collaboration areas and employee lounge spaces have become central to a healthy and productive workplace, as these areas ensure employees have a variety of meeting spaces and natural collision points to connect. A choice of desks, lounges, quiet rooms, and other space types allows employees to work where they feel they are most productive while allowing for a more enjoyable in-office experience.

3. Environmental consciousness

Environmental consciousness is fast becoming a significant consideration for office tenants. They look for buildings that prioritize sustainability through energy-efficient lighting, recycling programs, renewable energy sources, and green certifications like LEED, such as the new building 601 W Hastings St at Waterfront Hub and 1075 W Georgia St Arthur Erickson Place. The building systems at 601 W Hastings include low-flow water fixtures, increased insulation and thermal performance materials, daylight sensors for lighting control, bike locker and a white roof, which reduces heat absorption and conduction to the interior of the building — resulting in a highly efficient building operating with optimal tenant comfort in mind. The team at 1075 W Georgia has retrofitted all heating/cooling systems from natural gas to clean energy, saving energy and reducing carbon footprint. As of January 2024, it is now a Zero Carbon Building – Performance certified by the Canada Green Building Council.

While recognizing that the current Downtown Vancouver office vacancy rate sits at 11%, this is still a healthy number relative to other provinces such as Downtown Toronto, which is at 19%. Based on our detailed forecast, we are not expecting any significant influx of office supply to the market in 2024 – therefore, top tenants have the luxury of choice in the current market. However, this may not last for long. 

Curious how a new space for your company could impact your culture, productivity, and employee well-being? Contact The HTFG or [email protected] to learn more. 

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