Research has suggested small and medium-sized enterprises – businesses with between 10 and 249 employees – in London could save £18,600 a year by implementing flexible working and downsizing their office space.
Conference call provider PowWowNow release the findings adding that by allowing just one in five of their workforce to work remotely, London based SMEs could save on average £1,544 a month in rent by revaluating their office space requirements. Those willing to implement flexible working for up to 30 per cent of their employees could save more than £2,370 per month.
With figures from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy indicating that there are over 16,455 small and medium-sized business now based in the capital, these potential savings amount to a combined total of over £306 million a year.
The study also revealed that companies in the finance and insurance industries based in London stand to make the highest savings, with SMEs in these sectors poised to save an astounding £27,970 a year by allowing just 20 per cent of their workforce to work remotely and rethinking their space requirements.
|Amounts SMEs could save by implementing flexible working (per year)|
|Yorkshire & the Humber||£4,440|
|East of England||£5,328|
Meanwhile, businesses in the East of England stand to save on average £444 per month, equating to a significant £5,328 a year. Office-based employers in the North East stand to save £430 per month by allowing 20 per cent of their employees work remotely and almost £650 a month if they allow 30 per cent of their employees to work remotely. Elsewhere, in the South East, business owners stand to save upwards of £7,100 a year by allowing 20 per cent of their staff to work remotely, compared to the potential savings of £4,440 a Welsh business owner could be saving per annum.
“Office rent is one of the biggest overheads for SMEs after salaries,” notes Jason Downes, MD of PowWowNow. “With commercial rent costs increasing rapidly in the capital, and a younger workforce prioritising flexibility over pay, SMEs need to seriously reconsider their basic office space requirements. Priorities should include whether these could be reimagined to help to cut costs, attract talent, and ultimately, promote productivity.”