Flexible working population growing 82pc year-on-year

18 May 2010

Workspace solutions provider Regus, which serves 500,000 clients worldwide in 1,000 locations, said it has seen an 82pc rise in the uptake of its Businessworld flexible working programme, a trend it predicts will continue to rise over the next decade.

Regus has more than 1,000 Irish customers and four offices in Ireland. Michael Barth, regional manager for Regus Europe said: “The growing mobile worker population will need support from mobile solutions with a proven track record.

“That’s why we see significant future growth potential for Businessworld. It’s the only membership scheme in the world that provides instant access to 1,000 workplaces and all the tools the mobile workforce needs to operate productively and cost-effectively on the go.”

Future Human

Businessworld offers members four unique packages providing flexible low-cost workplaces, office facilities and meeting rooms on demand in more than 1,000 locations worldwide.

The revolutionary idea was an instant hit when it was launched on the eve of recession in 2008, but membership has almost doubled in the last 12 months as the downturn peaked.

Solution to mobility problem

Cardholders grew 82pc from 170,000 to 320,000 as companies and individuals realised its potential to solve mobility problems.

“Businessworld is the perfect solution for on-the-go professionals who want a working environment that doesn’t cost the earth or compromise productivity,” said Barth.

“The scheme took off in the recession because it can cut costs by 60-70pc when compared to traditional office costs yet enhance flexibility and effectiveness whilst working on the move or in a non-office location.

“But it will really show its huge potential for growth in the next 10 years as flexible working becomes the norm.”

Carol Anne Lowe, managing director of Irish communications skills company Blue Moon Communications, said Platinum Plus allows her to have a global brand without a global cost.

“Because we train business and political leaders worldwide, we needed access to ‘state-of-the-art’ offices and equipment in globally strategic business locations.

“So we had two options; incur the costs of renting and outfitting very exclusive offices in the most expensive locations; or, becoming a Businessworld member, which provided us with all of this, plus the support of a highly skilled staff at no additional cost. The choice was easy. I became a Businessworld client because it made sound business and financial sense.”

Lowe is part of a growing trend. By the end of this year, she’ll be one of a billion mobile workers worldwide.

A recent study by analysts IDC of three core mobile workers – those in offices, non-office based and working from home – showed that the figure could grow to 1.2 billion by 2013.

By John Kennedy

Photo: The number of mobile workers could increase to 1.2 billion by 2013, a study by analysts IDC suggests

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years