Commercial properties are thought to be become vacant as networking technology replaces the need for office space.
A study, produced by a think tank and the Institute of Directors, predicts that virtual desktops, and to some extent the recession, are leading to less of a demand for office space.
Instead of offices companies are using new technology to work from a variety of locations such as at home or on the road, and only using an office when they book a conference room for meetings with clients.
Dave Coplin, national technology officer at Microsoft UK, said, “Companies will be a bit more aggressive with how much office space they need. The savings in the short term will be around office space.”
“At best 55% of office space is used at any one time, leaving 45% unused. That is 45% of your office costs.”
This means that in years to come office space may become redundant, meaning that vacancy rates may soar.
With money-saving schemes already in place, such as hiring meeting rooms as and when needed, some think that it is inevitable that more offices will become vacant in the up-and-coming years.
Mr Coplin said, “We have talked for a while about the death of the desk phone. Now we are talking about the death of the desk. It’s not just about working from home. There are compelling reasons for working from a variety of locations.”
Changes like these are already in place in cities like London, Birmingham and Manchester, and may affect vacancy rates in the near future.