More space or less? Companies confounded by the coronavirus-era office

As lockdowns are lifted, companies are busy modifying office space so employees can return to work. And for many, that task may be harder than arranging for staff to work from home. It’s not just a matter of creating a safe workplace, says Thomas Kessler, CEO and co-founder of Locatee, a Swiss start-up that provides data on the use of space. Employees will expect a more flexible work-from-home policy and a better experience when they are onsite. In the future, offices may look more like living rooms, says Sabrine Ehm, customer success manager at Locatee. One pressing question is whether companies will need more space or less as they balance health precautions against the odds of fewer people being physically present. One thing is certain: The open-floor plan crammed with cubicles, long a staple of office life, is doomed, she says.

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