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Employees return to office to save on energy

With rising energy prices, more employees are choosing to return to the office to reduce their energy costs. Here's what you need to know about this trend.
Reem Abouemera
Copy Writer / Content writer

With energy prices skyrocketing and energy consumption on the rise in Europe, it has become increasingly necessary for individuals to find ways to reduce their energy usage. More specifically, this looming energy crisis is causing many employees to rethink their work-from-home arrangements.

As a result, the "return to office" has emerged, where employees are choosing to return to their offices to cut back on their energy costs by taking advantage of the office infrastructure. This includes using the building's air conditioning and heating systems, as well as getting access to copiers, printers, and other office equipment that can help them work more efficiently.

For business, this is quite an unexpected turn of events. Here's what you need to know about this trend and its impact on your organization.

How Much Can Employees Save by Returning to the Office?

There's no definitive answer to this question since it depends on various factors such as location, building design, and energy use habits. However, according to the price comparison website Uswitch, full-time employees could save €85 a week if they go to the office instead of working from home.

The calculation is based on the average behaviour of employees, both in terms of their energy usage and the time they spend working. Going to the office would result in 75% less gas consumption and 25% less electricity consumption daily, equivalent to savings of €85 per week.

When Will the Peak of Returning to the Office Be?

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Experts predict that the peak of returning to office will occur next winter since that's when energy costs are at their highest. However, it won't end after winter. Instead, this trend will likely continue as energy prices rise and more organizations switch to eco-friendly energy sources. This is especially when summer temperatures will make working from home unbearable without air conditioning. 

Are Companies Ready for This Trend?

Most companies have a "work-from-anywhere" policy, and the office isn't exempt from this arrangement. That means employees are welcome to come and work in their office whenever they need to, so some companies won't need to make any major changes to their infrastructure to accommodate returning employees.

However, while some companies are ready to embrace this trend and actively support employees who choose to return to the office, others may need time to catch up and find ways to facilitate these arrangements. Here's what you need to keep in mind as an employer if you want to embrace this trend.

Sudden Occupation Rates

With more employees returning to the office, companies will likely be unable to accommodate all of them. To stay on top of your capacity and avoid situations where employees need to wait for their turn to work, a desk booking solution like Tribeloo can come in handy.

Through the use of the software, employees can book their workspace in advance, so you can plan for the influx of employees and ensure that everyone has a comfortable place to work. In contrast, if there isn't enough space available, employees can see that and make other arrangements to meet their needs.

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On top of that, you'll be able to see which office areas are underutilized and which are in high demand. You can then optimize your space to ensure that you're allocating it as efficiently and effectively as possible. Not to mention, with this data on hand, you'll be able to forecast future needs and be ready for the next surge of returning employees.

Office Space Planning

If it's been a while since you've done a full office space planning, you may need to revisit it now that you're expecting an influx of returning employees. Since your model will likely be a hybrid one, you'll want to make sure that you're allocating space according to your needs.

For example, if teams or departments are still sharing your office, consider how much space each individual team needs for their upcoming projects. That way, you can plan your common areas accordingly and make sure that everyone can work seamlessly without interfering with one another.

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In addition, you may need to add more workstations to accommodate all of the returning employees. This will depend on the size and layout of your office space, as well as how many people you're expecting to return. You'll also want to take into account any additional resources, like meeting spaces or shared kitchen areas.

Energy Efficiency

Finally, as the cost of energy continues to rise, it’ll be more important than ever for companies to find ways to reduce their electricity costs. Whether it's through investing in new technologies or simply finding ways to be more energy-efficient, companies must do everything they can to reduce their electricity usage.

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For example, you may want to look into installing smart lighting systems in your office. These lights can be controlled from a central location and automatically adjust based on the time of day and the number of people in your office. Plus, they're typically more energy-efficient than traditional lighting solutions, which can help you reduce your electricity costs over time.

Similarly, for ACs and other HVAC systems, you may want to look into smart controls that allow you to set schedules or adjust the settings based on usage patterns. This can help you use energy more efficiently and save money in the long run.

The Bottom Line

Most companies are happy to have their employees return to the office after working remotely. But if you want to make the most of this trend, it's important to plan ahead and consider how you can best support your returning employees and create a positive workplace experience.

Your employees shouldn't be returning just to save money - they should be returning because your office is a great place to work – so much so that they want to come back. Keep that in mind as you work to prepare your office space for their return, and you'll be on the right track to success.

Ultimately, it all comes down to planning ahead and being strategic about how you allocate your space. Remember, a tool like Tribeloo can help you stay on top of all the details and ensure that your office is ready to support your returning employees. So don't wait - start planning now!


Reem Abouemera

As a content writer who has tried it all when it comes to working models– from the traditional 9-5 in an office to fully working remotely and everything in between. Reem now puts her experience with the various working style into words at Tribeloo, ultimately helping others make more informed decisions about their own work lives.

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