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Tech Trumps Price on Occupiers’ Workspace Wish-lists

Key findings from our flex office report

Tech trumps price on occupiers’ workspace wish-lists – so why does it continue to let them down?

Evolve or die. The mantra of continuous innovation is the key to success in virtually any industry, and flex is no exception. Keeping pace with market demands is crucial to staying competitive for flex operators. But discerning exactly what occupiers want can be challenging.

Of course, if you want unique insight into occupiers’ demands, who better to ask than businesses themselves?

That’s why we took matters into our own hands at NCG, commissioning an independent, nationally representative survey of 1,002 senior decision-makers within UK businesses on what they’re looking for in their workspaces.

Here’s what we discovered.

1. Tech beats price in topping the workspace wishlist

This may come as a surprise to some (though not to us at NCG, naturally), but our survey found that nearly a third (31%) of business decision-makers see the tech available in a flexible workspace as an important factor in their choice when choosing a workspace (they were asked to choose the three most influential factors). That makes it the most commonly selected priority, comfortably above the 25% who said price was the top consideration.

Also trumping price were events and networking opportunities (31%), and design and quality of the fit-out (28%).

2. There’s willingness to pay a premium for a premium product.

Taking into account those findings, which demonstrate that the quality of a space is more important than price, it’s no shock that over half (55%) of businesses also say they would pay a premium for a top-quality workspace.

And that lines up with current market trends, given that lettings of the best quality offices accounted for 55.8% of all London take-up in Q1 of 2024.

3. Despite the hype, tech is letting occupiers down

So, we’ve established that occupiers care about quality and workspace tech. A lot – more than anything else in fact. But, crucially, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the tech they’re experiencing is up to scratch.

It’s disappointing to see that just 10% of respondents say the overall tech offering within their workspace is ‘very good’, with a further 36% describing it as ‘good’. That means the majority are not satisfied with their workspace tech.

And it’s even worse to hear that half (50%) say the tech in their workspace “regularly fails”.

4. Occupants will vote with their feet for better tech facilities

Failing tech is not just a huge problem for tenants – operators and landlords must take note. In fact, there are some telling findings about what this means for tenant retention.

Of the businesses that describe their workspace’s tech offering as ‘very good’, only 57% are considering moving to a new workspace; 19% below the average of 76%, suggesting that delivering great tech is one of the key facets to keeping tenants around.

Lessons to be learned

Overwhelmingly, we can see that even though many UK businesses clearly place a high value on workspace tech, the service they receive is failing to meet their expectations. For their benefit, and the flex industry’s more generally, that really needs to change.

It comes down to this: scrimping on tech will get you nowhere with today’s tenants, who, with more choice than ever, are demanding a high-quality, tech-enabled experience. If landlords and operators want to command premium rents and attract (and actually keep) the very best occupiers, making sure first-class tech is in place should be the top priority.

How to get this done? Nine times out of ten, working with a digital infrastructure specialist will be your best option to creating spaces that have prospective occupiers paying attention. First and foremost, tech specialists can provide valuable strategic insight into the exact tech your space needs. They can then manage the integration across its life cycle from conception to operation.

It’s time landlords and operators bring in tech in their spaces up to scratch. What action will you be taking?

Read the full report at

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