Business

‘Remote working’ may emerge as mainstay option, to cut health risk, cost

If in case COVID-19 lockdown is extended in India, productivity of global in-house centres here could be severely impacted and enterprises across sectors have started reviewing business continuity plans, as per Colliers Research.

Colliers India’s latest report ‘Insights & Recommendations for Indian Real Estate in Light of Spread of COVID19 said, “We expect occupiers to initiate renegotiation of leases or ask for relief from developers/landlords over elements such as lock-in amount, fixed deposit, to cope with likely increased financial pressure.’’

The country’s office sector likely to see lower gross absorption of about 45-50 million sq ft in 2020 due to delays in decision-making, arising from the ongoing pandemic outbreak, it further said.

“We recommend investors to capitalise on the situation and focus on commercial real estate assets as their cap rates are likely to decline in line with the falling 10-year government bond yields. This should place commercial assets in a more lucrative position, possibly generating higher returns for investors. We also recommend investors to scout for assets in data centres and warehousing and logistics, given strong potential in terms of cloud infrastructure, and robust domestic demand”, said Sankey Prasad, Managing Director and Chairman at Colliers International India.

Colliers study spotted a strong inclination for ‘remote working’ and ‘building data capabilities’ among occupiers. MNCs are likely re-evaluate their workplace strategies with respect to global in-house centres/support centres and call centres in India to minimise continuity risk.

“The current scenario may be a precursor to a shift in the idea of workplaces and hence we recommend that occupiers evaluate their density plan and seating arrangements in workplaces, keeping safety and health as key considerations,’’ said Colliers study.

Currently, each employee/seat, on an average, takes 60-80 sq feet at workspace, as against 100 sq.ft and above internationally.

During H1 2020, the realty advisory anticipated slower deployment of funds in India by foreign investors as they are on a wait-and-see mode. “We foresee occupancy levels in flexible workspaces to stay muted in March and April as the risk exposure is higher than in traditional offices,’’ the study cautioned.

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Printable version | May 26, 2020 12:24:35 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/remote-working-may-emerge-as-mainstay-option-to-cut-health-risk-cost/article31221656.ece

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