Flexible working critical to job creation
84% Hong Kong professionals believe savings on fixed office space translate into jobs and growth
Eighty-four per cent of Hong Kong business people report that capital freed up from lengthy leases and under-occupied space should be invested in growth initiatives and employment, according to the latest research commissioned by Regus, the global workplace provider. The research canvassed more than 44,000 senior business people around the world, across more than 100 countries, including 365 respondents from Hong Kong.
Confidence in the concept of unleashing fixed office space to translate into growth incentives is higher among Hong Kong professionals (84%) than the global average (81%). It may partly due to the scarcity of land in Hong Kong and soaring office rents in the city’s commercial districts.
This puts flexible working firmly at the heart of the economic agenda for governments. The survey shows that 87% of Hong Kong respondents indicated that government should be promoting flexible working by offering tax incentives – a figure that is broadly on par with global average rate at 86%.
(Source: Regus, 2014)
In addition, 83% of Hong Kong respondent say non-tax incentives for promoting flexible working should also be offered along with the active promotion of flexible working options. The rate is higher than global average of 79%.
(Source: Regus, 2014)
As global business people reveal that capital freed up from lengthy office leasing could be invested in employment, 64% of Hong Kong professionals say that flexible working can contribute to reducing youth unemployment. That is a higher rate than the global average (59%). Business people globally also agree that flexible working is critical to ensuring under-represented demographics such as carers, returning mothers, parents and older workers remain in the workforce.
Other key research findings include:
- 81% of respondents globally, 84% in Hong Kong, 92% in Mainland China and 93% in Singapore,think that the saving businesses can make on expensive leases and under-occupied office space, should instead be invested in growth initiatives therefore helping increase GDP and occupation levels;
- The reasons national governments should promote flexible working are closely linked to economic growth: 83% of respondents globally, 85% in Hong Kong, 89% in Mainland China and 91% in Singapore, believe more flexible working would help increase female participation in the economy;
- 88% of respondents globally, 92% in Hong Kong, 94% in Mainland China and 96% in Singapore believe it would also help workers who care for family members remain in the workforce.
“Flexible working plays an important part in creating jobs and boosting the economy as money saved on lengthy leases and under-occupied office space can instead be invested in growth and the creation of new jobs. This is particularly important in cities like Hong Kong where the government are trying to contrast youth unemployment,” said John Henderson, Chief Financial Officer at Regus Asia Pacific.
“But flexible working can also help the economy by encouraging under-represented demographics to remain or return to the workforce bosting GDP. By allowing workers to better reconcile their professional and personal lives, flexible working means that older workers, parents, carers, returning mothers and workers in general can continue to remain in employment and contribute to the overall economy,” he said.
 Knight Frank’s monthly report, 2015 August
Regus is the global workplace provider.
Its network of 2,500 locations in 106 countries and 900 cities provides convenient, high-quality, fully serviced spaces for people to work, whether for a few minutes or a few years. Companies like Google, Toshiba and GlaxoSmithKline choose Regus so that they can work flexibly and make their businesses more successful.
The key to flexible working is convenience and so Regus is opening wherever its 2.1 million members want support - city centres, suburban districts, shopping centres and retail outlets, railway stations, motorway service stations and even community centres.
Founded in Brussels, Belgium, in 1989, Regus is based in Luxembourg and listed on the London Stock Exchange. For more information, please visit: www.regus.hk