The Office Group predicts higher demand for flexible workspace as it agrees BP letting

One of London’s major flexible offices landlords has said it agreed a string of deals in the months since the lockdown started, including to BP, as it predicted demand will jump further as businesses adjust to more people working from home.

The Office Group, which allows members access to desks and meeting rooms across its 40 buildings, said it has done significant lettings with 10 large corporates in the last few months.

The government this week said people should work from home if possible, in a change to efforts in August to encourage staff back to offices from the Covid-19 lockdown.

A number of companies are seeking flexible office space that will allow them to still have bases in the capital, but on less lengthy leases, and where staff can be part of the time but not every day.

Olly Olsen, co-founder of The Office Group, said the firm “has seen a big jump in enquiries from progressive companies looking to move to more flexible workspace”.

Olsen said the firm, majority owned by Blackstone, thinks the latest government guidance “will accelerate interest as more and more companies rethink their ways of working, forever”.

He added: “This will combine the positive sides of working from home with innovative office space to give colleagues the best of both worlds”.

Energy giant BP recently signed a three-year lease with The Office Group for 50,000 square feet Douglas House in Fitzrovia.

The deal will give BP 700 desk spaces that can be used by 1000 employees who will also have access to meeting rooms and lounges across The Office Group’s other sites.

BP will use the site for various innovation teams, including those looking at investing in new businesses, some scientists and digital workers.

They have previously been located in different smaller offices around London.

Oli Beavon, director of workplace modernisation at BP said: “As we reinvent BP to become more agile and digitally-focused, we’re also looking at the ways in which we work.”