IWG, AppleOne prepare for ‘hybrid’ work arrangement

·3 min read

IN THE post-pandemic future of work, organizations will be combining remote and on-site working.

In a recent briefing, Lars Wittig, International Workspace Group’s (IWG) country manager for the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, South Korea and vice president for sales Asean, South Korea, said industries are now planning for a hybrid future in which employees working both remotely and in the office, will become more common.

Wittig said there is a need for Cebu to prepare its office leasing facilities for the hybrid working style and that its partnership with Cebu-based AppleOne Properties Inc. (API) will kick off Cebu’s readiness for the new normal office rental market.

Factors such as internet connectivity interruptions, disruptions, distractions, work-from-home fatigue and the need for collaboration will push employees to bring their jobs back to the offices.

IWG and API during the “Onwards and Upwards: IWG and API on the New Way of Work in Cebu,” vowed to work together to provide and meet the demand for office space under the new normal environment.

Wittig said the Covid-19 pandemic brought the “biggest flexible workspace experiment” and Cebu was able to immediately shift to the new working style.

“Cebu is a good example of this,” he said.

API chief operating officer Joy Veloso said Cebu’s move to contain the spread of Covid-19 and the current rollout of the vaccines has resulted in “people getting back to their normal lives, workers going back to the office and businesses starting to open up,” thus, strengthening investment opportunities.

Not for long term

Wittig and Velasco agreed that the current work-from-home trend may not necessarily be the ideal long-term solution considering that many businesses rely on the traditional face-to-face model in its operations.

Companies of all sizes had already been moving towards the hybrid way of work even before the pandemic, and Wittig said the current situation had merely accelerated its adoption and demand.

Being well aware of the business market in Cebu, Veloso said API did anticipate the need for flexible spaces to arise long before the pandemic happened.

She said they envisioned the hybrid work model as the solution to the growing workforce in Cebu.

The formation of Regus, a brand under IWG’s multiple office space portfolio, in Cebu is a proactive move by API. The firm believed that with Regus’ wide ranging services, every business need and work style can be catered to. It noted that Regus is designed for the future as it can adapt to the many changes in the business environment, including the pandemic.

Regus’ continuous operations, despite the pandemic, have proven to be advantageous for the business and a good balance to the API portfolio, Veloso said.

Regus is present in two locations in Cebu — in Cebu IT Park and Cebu Business Park.

As part of the expansion strategy between API and IWG, more Regus and other IWG brands like HQ and Spaces will open in Iloilo, Bacolod, Dumaguete and Metro Cebu. (KOC)