Provide local offices with hot desks for use by local staff

Currently many staff have to travel long distances in rush hour from various areas of the city to city centre offices lengthening their working day and clogging up the roads to get to expensive office space.  Often they don't need to do this to do their jobs but it would not be appropriate for them to work from home (maybe they don't have a suitable room or they have small children at home who would be a distraction).  If there were offices in their local area with hot desks on days they don't need to be in the central office they could work from their with suitable office facilities.  Teams could become more virtual, only coming together when they need to.

Why the contribution is important

This would reduce the need for city centre office space and allow some city centre buildings to be vacated so reducing the rent bill for both offices and parking spaces.  People whose job is to be out in the comunity but also need and office (e.g. social workers) could 'land' in the office near where they are on a particular day and save travel time.  It would also mean that staff could spend more of the working day working and less travelling.  I live in Sheldon and have to travel by public transport as I can't drive.  To get to my current office in Ladywood requires two buses and takes between 90 and 120 minutes each way, that is 15-20 hours a week, about half of a working week.  My job could be done from home but I don't have a suitable room and (as I live in a low rise block of council flats) it woudl be too noisy for me to work effectively.  If I could work from a local office 10-20 minutes walk from my flat 4 days a week it woudl be a much more effecitve use of my time and I wouldn't arrive at work feeling tired and frustrated.

by stephenbooth_uk on December 10, 2015 at 02:13PM

Current Rating

Average score : 5.0
Based on : 1 vote


  • Posted by navigator December 10, 2015 at 15:00

    its a good idea, also more working based from home rather than an office could be used for some roles.
    teams coming together when needed.
  • Posted by stephenbooth_uk December 18, 2015 at 08:27

    navigator, thank you. I see this as being a mid-way step between home working and going to a central office. Personally I don't have the space or facilities at home to work from home on a regular basis, also (whilst I'm not a particularly social person) I wouldn't want to work from home, without the social interaction of the office, often. Having somewhere local I can work from on those days I don't need to go to a central office would be very helpful for people in my situation. Given the amount of vacant office space I see in my local area I'm sure the council could get a good deal on rent.

    An added advantage would be resilience. Currently over half of the council's office based staff are in 5 buildings (6 if you include Library of Birmingham) within a roughly 1 mile radius area in the city centre. Any event (weather, accident, road closures or terrorist attack) that took one building out of action has a good chance of also taking the others out of action. By spreading the workplaces around the city and offering flexibility the council would reduce the risk of one event impacting large groups of staff and the services they provide.
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