FM:Systems Study Finds Business Leaders Consider Reducing Real Estate Costs and Investing in the “Right” Workspace among Top Priorities

Many organizations, including ones with over 10 offices, say they are either manually tracking or have no system in place to accurately measure the performance of their hybrid work arrangement.

RALEIGH, N.C., Dec. 8, 2022 – FM:Systems, provider of the most scalable and intuitive all-in-one workplace management platform, today released the findings of its 2022 Refocus and Rationalize the Workplace study of 456 business leaders in HR, finance, facilities and real estate in the U.S. Of the business leaders surveyed, 43% consider reducing real estate expenses as a top priority in the next 1-3 years, with 31% prioritizing investing in the right workspace aligned with the culture and mission of their organization. Still, 3 out of 4 business leaders say they lack utilization and space data to make informed decisions about their workplace and real estate needs.

“The data tells us that while many organizations have successfully overcome the early return to work challenges following the pandemic, there is still much uncertainty about how their workplace is working for them – both as a company and for their employees,” said Kurt von Koch, CEO, FM:Systems. “Business leaders realize the new world of work continues to evolve quickly, so much so that what may have seemed like a convenient office location, smart floor plan, or attractive amenity not long ago, may not actually match how, when and why people are using these spaces today.”

Brian Haines, Chief Strategy Officer, FM:Systems added, “At the same time, as organizations face ongoing pressures of a tight labor market and economic uncertainties, they know they can no longer make real estate decisions based on cost or availability alone. To deliver the right spaces and experiences for their teams, while also uncovering cost-reduction opportunities, will require using a multi-point data analysis approach. This’ll capture everything from workplace utilization, employee mobility, and more.”

Following are additional key findings from the 2022 Refocus and Rationalize the Workplace study:

Business leaders value refocusing their offices as workplace destinations. After working remotely for so long without productivity suffering, organizations want the physical office to be a place employees want to come to work and can get the most out of working together in-person, like collaborative work, ideation, and culture building opportunities.

  • Half of all business leaders believe their future workplace needs to be centrally located to most employees.
  • Business leaders believe team meetings (54%), collaborative work (45%), client meetings (37%), and onboarding new hires (31%) are among some of the primary roles of today’s workplace.
  • Finding an office with nearby amenities, including access to fitness studios, restaurants, coffee shops, and outdoor opportunities for employees are also priorities for nearly 32% of business leaders.
  • Health and wellness spaces, like meditation rooms, access to outdoor spaces, and dedicated private spaces for employees breastfeeding to pump, also ranked high (28%) on the list of aspects business leaders want to offer their employees; as did indoor air quality (35%) as a top priority.

Despite a majority (80%) of business leaders believing hybrid work will continue to dominate over the next 1-3 years, 61% would prefer employees back in the office full-time. While many employers continue to struggle with embracing new ways of working, there’s consensus that hybrid work will continue to be the primary work model.

  • Business leaders who think it’s important for employees to work in the office full-time say it provides an opportunity to strengthen company culture when everyone’s in-person (64%) and supports the organization’s mission (60%) as top reasons. Nearly half (48%) believe people are less productive when remote. That sentiment was strongest among organizations in finance (35%) and healthcare (19%)
  • Even among those who favor full-time office work, 76% of all respondents acknowledge hybrid work will lead because it allows employees to achieve a better work-life balance. 56% also believe hybrid work will help them attract and retain talent.
  • More than half (56%) think hybrid work is here to stay because people can choose how they’d like to get different types of work done, when and where they’re most productive.
  • Nearly 36% of all business leader respondents believe hybrid work provides the opportunity for reduced amounts of real estate, and thus saving on real estate costs.

76% of business leaders say they lack utilization or space data to make informed strategic real estate decisions as they face the realities of changing work patterns, shifting employee attitudes and expectations, and a potential economic downturn.

Many business leaders are having to make important real estate decisions without reliable workplace data.

  • Part of the challenge is that 37% of organizations say they have been tracking their new hybrid work arrangement either manually or not at all, including 31% of organizations with over 1 million in square feet of office space and 32% of organizations with 10 or more offices.
  • Most business leaders would like to spend less time on manually tracking employee attendance (41%), manually tracking visitor traffic (38%) and space planning (34%), if they had a workplace management solution that could automate these tasks.
  • Out of all the survey respondents, access to accurate utilization (44%), followed by space (32%) data are considered to be most lacking to confidently inform real estate and workplace decisions in the next 1-3 years; surprisingly, organizations with over 8 million square feet of office space reported cost (37%) as being the most limited data source, also followed by space (34%).

2022 Refocus and Rationalize the Workplace survey report here. This survey was conducted by PureSpectrum on behalf of FM:Systems in November 2022. It includes responses from 456 U.S. business leaders in HR, finance, facilities, and real estate.

About FM:Systems

FM:Systems all-in-one workplace management platform helps more than 1,200 of the world’s largest organizations access, manage, and measure every aspect of their real estate portfolio. With the most complete range of intuitive and scalable space management, hybrid work, workplace analytics and smart sensor solutions, our customers gain the data-backed clarity and vision necessary to make strategic real estate decisions and deliver high-performance workplaces today and long into the future. Our market-leading solutions manage over 3B square feet across 80 countries for customers representing 40% of the Fortune 50, 40% of top U.S. banks and 30% of top European banks, 150+ government institutions including 10 of the 15 federal government departments, 150+ universities, several top 20 tech companies, more than 200 hospital and healthcare organizations, and half of the top 10 pharmaceutical firms. For more information about FM:Systems, please visit

Related Posts