Hybrid work arrangements gaining traction in Hong Kong

Hong Kong’s office vacancy rate at 12.7% mirrors global economic uncertainty, driving organisations to adopt cost-saving hybrid work models.
By: | October 31, 2023

Amid high office vacancy rates, a growing number of organisations in Hong Kong are turning to cost-effective hybrid work arrangements. This trend is part of a global shift towards more flexible working models.

More than 80% of CFOs surveyed in the US by IWG said they believe hybrid work arrangements are reducing costs for their organisations. This trend is also evident in Hong Kong, where CFOs are looking at ways to cut costs in preparation for a potential economic downturn.

As of the latest data, office vacancy rates in Hong Kong remained high at 12.7%, with only a slight decrease from the 12.8% rate reported in August 2023, according to JLL. Although the IWG CFO and Hybrid Work Survey was conducted in the US, the economic uncertainty in Hong Kong aligns with the global sentiment, as IWG further noted, “Organisations in Hong Kong are [also] adopting hybrid working models, as they are among the most effective ways to reduce costs.”

In response to recent uncertainties, CFOs have been implementing various cost-saving strategies, including reducing new hires, personnel layoffs, leaving vacancies unfilled, and shifting to short-term lease agreements for office space. Additionally, a Colliers poll indicated that within the next two years, 21% of office tenants in Hong Kong are likely to reduce their office space footprint, reported SCMP.

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Mark Dixon, Founder and CEO of IWG, said, “Hybrid working helps organisations stay competitive and resilient, especially in times of economic uncertainty. The research shows that CFOs and business leaders are adopting hybrid working for many reasons. Not only does it support employee work-life balance and wellbeing, but it also provides a meaningful boost to an organisation’s bottom line.”