The London Net-Work

19th May 2021

After a year of working from home, New London Architecture has launched WRK/LDN: office revolution? – a report on the office looking at how workspaces across London have adjusted to the COVID-19 pandemic and how they will need to adapt for the future. 

Developed by Head of Office and Workplace, Toni Riddiford, and Associate Architect, Nik Hoggarth, The London Net-Work explores emerging typologies of worker and workplaces, and is included within the publication…

New typologies of worker

The daily Workforce Army has disbanded. Nine-to-five desk dwellers are few and far between. London has an opportunity to reinvent itself as a network of spaces which appeal to, and support, new typologies of worker.

Live/Work Local

  • 15-minute city is reality
  • They drive growth of neighbourhood co-work spaces, micro spoke office markets, localised economies and the bustling periphery
  • They now journey into the city centre for a reason rather than by default

Business Tourist

  • Live or relocate out of Central London
  • Drawn into knowledge, social and cultural clusters but less frequently than a Live/Work Local – how can the city encourage, support, and enhance their visits?

Active Commuter

  • Make their journey to/from/between workspaces in an active way
  • Require and value well-connected and high quality facilities that support this

International Worker/Digital Nomad

  • Fully exploit technologies and new digital job roles and may never travel/congregate for work in a physical setting
  • Opens up national and global talent pools and workstreams

Emerging office typologies

If job opportunities are no longer the reason that pulls so many to the city, what is it that makes London the home/destination of choice for a newly agile workforce? Emerging office typologies will need to cater to these workers.

Flagship Office

  • Front door in prominent location
  • Status symbol and brand hub
  • A place for meeting, socialising, collaboration and learning

Coffeehouse Office

  • Encourages cross-fertilisation of people and ideas
  • Distinct character appeals to particular industry, interest or ethos

Neighbourhood Office

  • A local workspace without commute
  • Alternative to homeworking
  • Offers business and community development
  • Creative reuse of vacant/declining spaces
  • Rebirth of out-of-town business park

Showcase Office

  • Makes an event out of working
  • Offers a unique experience
  • Could be a serviced offer, spoke within a larger organisation’s model, or a pop up with access to green or blue space

Pit Stop Office

  • This office is not an office at all. It is a well-located place for ‘Active Commuters’ to park and refresh themselves before going out into their office: the city

The evolution of the workplace has encountered a new paradigm shift. The popular statement “work is something you do, not a place you go” carries less currency when a recovery from the pandemic is on the horizon. It’s got to be both. Work is a thing you do in places that help you to do those things better. And if people are working in a certain place less than they used to, that place needs to evolve and become multi-functional to survive.

Which worker are you? And what’s your ideal network of workplaces? Get in touch with Toni Riddiford and Nik Hoggarth to discuss. View the WRK/LDN: office revolution? report in full here.

Related posts