A predicted boom in flexible working could contribute SGD $54.8 billion to the Singapore economy by 2030, according to the first comprehensive socio-economic study of changing workplace practices.
The analysis, commissioned by Regus and conducted by independent economists, studied 16 key countries to delve into the state of flexible working both now and through 2030.
In Singapore, a total of 73,000 additional jobs in flexible offices are expected to be created by 2030. Sectors driving the expected increase in value include professional services (23.3%), business support services (19.6%) and public administration (17.7%). Other sectors include information and communication activities (10.1%) and financial services (7.8%) and property services (5%). Together, these six sectors account for 83.5% of the total additional value expected to be generated by flexible working in Singapore by 2030.
Regus found that between 8% and 13% of all employment will be associated with flexible workspaces in most developed economies by 2030. Greater levels of flexible working will save businesses money, reduce operating costs and boost productivity – ultimately causing a ripple effect across the economy from core businesses through to supply chains.
The specific benefits include higher business and personal productivity, lower overheads for office space for companies using flexible workspace, and millions of hours saved commuting. All of these factors contribute to flexible working’s Gross Value Add (GVA) to the economy.
China and India are predicted to see the greatest GVA increase from flexible workspace, potentially seeing an increase of GVA of 193% and 141% in their respective economies. In Singapore, the expected increase in GVA is 89.8%.
Personal Benefits (China, US, India, Japan)
The study found that flexible working doesn’t just benefit economies – it also helps individuals. Remote workers are almost twice as likely to say they love their job as those in the same industry working in a traditional workspace.
A huge factor in this may be the times individuals save due to remote and flexible working. According to an accelerated growth model, which lays out a scenario for uptake of flexible working at a higher-than-current rate, cutting out the commute by working remotely could save 3.53 billion hours by 2030. That is equivalent to the time spent at work every year by 2.01 million people.
People in China, the US, India and Japan will see the greatest hours saved in the commute under the accelerated growth scenario, while people in Singapore will see 4.7 million hours of additional commuting time saved each year.