Staff return to Brisbane CBD after COVID-19, as corporations entice employees with ‘high-quality’ experiences

By | June 2, 2022
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Staff are returning to Brisbane’s CBD, with workplace occupancy charges hitting 64 per cent of COVID-19 pre-pandemic ranges — in one of many highest charges within the nation, in accordance with new information.

Figures from the Property Council of Australia (PCA) present Brisbane is second behind solely Adelaide in occupancy charges, leaping from simply over 50 per cent in April to 64 per cent in Could 2022.

Melbourne has recorded the bottom fee of the capital cities, with 48 per cent.

The info exhibits on peak days, Brisbane’s occupancy fee stands at 73 per cent and 43 per cent on a low day.

Property Council of Australia chief govt director Jen Williams mentioned it was a “pleasing bounce again”.

“The start of the 12 months was tough with Omicron, adopted by the floods, a lot of public holidays, and the rain previously few weeks as properly,” Ms Williams mentioned.

“We’re seeing a change in the way in which individuals go about their day-to-day lives when it comes to the workplace, so there may be undoubtedly a development in the direction of a hybrid approach of working now.

Graph exhibits workplace occupancy charges in Brisbane as a consequence of COVID-19 influence, Could 31, 2022.(Equipped: Property Council of Australia)

She mentioned some corporations have been shifting from older buildings to high quality buildings that have been extra sustainable and had good know-how in place.

The PCA mentioned smaller corporations would transfer in from the suburbs as soon as older, cheaper buildings turned accessible, regardless of many flooring remaining vacant.

Ms Williams mentioned different cities have been taking longer to bounce again as a result of that they had prolonged lockdowns as a consequence of COVID-19.

Jen Williams smiles in a suit.
Ms Williams says some corporations are shifting from older buildings to high quality buildings which might be extra sustainable and have good know-how in place.(ABC Information: Sarah Richards)

For Brisbane, Ms Williams mentioned she believed there can be some pure progress within the lead-up to the Olympics and “we’ll see extra white-collar staff transfer into the town”.

“We’ll see individuals coming and going from the town middle extra typically than we did previously,” she mentioned.

“I don’t really feel we’ll see individuals working 100 per cent at residence like we did within the lockdowns.”

She mentioned leasing brokers weren’t having to supply “sweeteners” like free lease or free refurbishments at this stage, like they have been pressured to through the mining downturn 5 years in the past.

‘Power on the bottom’

One of many largest elements influencing the present degree of occupancy is the choice for higher flexibility.

Head of Leasing at CBRE Pacific, Mark Curtain, mentioned he had seen the temper had modified within the metropolis.

“You may really feel that power on the bottom within the metropolis, with extra individuals on the streets and within the meals and beverage retailers,” Mr Curtain mentioned.

However he mentioned there was nonetheless extra progress to be made.

“If we will get again to an 80 per cent occupancy fee of the place we have been pre-COVID, I feel that is a sustainable mannequin for our cities,” he mentioned.

“We’d like individuals within the metropolis to maintain all of the great facilities that all of us take pleasure in. All of us do considerably have an obligation to proceed to help the CBD.”

CBRE Pacific Head of Leasing Mark Curtain smiles
CBRE Pacific Head of Leasing Mark Curtain says he hopes Brisbane can get again to 80 per cent occupancy fee in metropolis places of work.(ABC Information: Louisa Rebgetz)

Mr Curtain mentioned there was nonetheless loads of empty workplace area, because the emptiness fee sits at 15.4 per cent throughout the Brisbane CBD.

He mentioned there had been a push in the direction of high quality that might proceed as extra buildings got here on-line, older buildings to be repurposed leaving.

He mentioned landlords have been methods to assist get individuals into the workplace like wellness choices, meals and beverage facilities and technological experiences.

‘Hybrid’ of working from residence and in workplace

However working from residence stays the choice for a lot of staff.

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