The shift to hybrid work is changing the underlying metrics companies are using to predict how much space they need, address costs and improve the workplace experience. Rather than focusing on how many people an office can accommodate, CRE leaders instead want to understand how employees feel when they are there.

Ninety percent of organizations surveyed for CBRE's annual Workplace & Occupancy Report said they have implemented a hybrid work program, up from 83% in 2021 and 43% in 2015. This shift has put an emphasis on metrics like sharing ratios as organizations seek to optimize their portfolios to address low space utilization. Nearly half of enterprises said they are comfortable with a sharing ratio of 1.5:1, up from 32% in 2021.

For the first time, occupancy metrics based on square footage per person and seat are not among the top five metrics that matter most to CRE leaders, said CBRE. While utilization remains important, planning metrics have shifted toward workplace performance measurements such as employee sentiment and attendance.

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