Office Utilization for the Modern Workforce: More Collaboration Spaces and Building Amenities


Over the course of 2019, a trend that emerged during the office leasing process was employers’ desire to take advantage of new opportunities in efficiency, given changes in technology and employee collaboration. The modern workforce has given rise to shifts in the way people are working, including growth in remote working, “hoteling” workspaces, in-suite breakout rooms, shared building working lounge areas, as well as a continued focus on wellness in the workplace. Because of these shifts, tenants are sharply analyzing their existing space (or “prospective space”), with an eye on how they can now fully utilize their office space given these changes.


Whether tenants were expanding into a new space or hiring within an existing space, they were hyper-focused on how the space and building itself ultimately affected their ability to compete for talent as an employer. Decision makers were looking at their spaces with an eye to modern employee shifts, such as employees who might work remotely half of the week or might elect to use a standing desk for wellness imperatives; whether the company had a goal to paperless, which would also equate to smaller work stations with no file storage; or whether the company has shifted their IT infrastructure from an in-office IT room to the “cloud.” These changing dynamics factor into fit-planning and therefore encourage companies to look to creative space planning in order to create more efficient layouts, right-sizing employee personal desk space and, more often than not, fitting more employees in the same space than before.


During the fit-planning process with these groups, it was clear that has been a shift away from creating many private offices, large reception areas and IT rooms. Instead, decision makers have concentrated on space planning for fewer private workspace and touchdown rooms and utilizing the building’s common areas and amenities.


For example, prospective tenants have been wowed by new, “tenants only”amenity spaces, including the indoor/outdoor “Connect Lounge” and “Engage Conference” at Fifth Street Towers in Downtown Minneapolis. The building also boasts a full-size golf simulator, nap pods,concierge services and an entertaining space. Rooftop decks and social workspaces have drawn tenants to nearly fill the newly constructed T3 in North Loop. Even suburban buildings—regardless of class—like the Carlson Towers in Minnetonka, Metropoint in St. Louis Park or Pentagon Park in Edina are battling it out in the amenity race, adding indoor/outdoor common spaces with water features, fire pits, bar lounges, high-end cafés, bike storage or fitness rooms with the trendiest equipment like Peloton bikes or The Mirror.


The response from prospective tenants on the aforementioned amenity-rich buildings is just what one would expect—they end up signing leases because they can utilize smaller, efficient office spaces without sacrificing value, but they can still offer the awesome community, work-life balance and experience that their millennial workforce desires.




Matt Delisle

Senior Associate

Colliers International | Minneapolis - St. Paul

Connect with Matt








Nathan Karrick

Senior Associate

Colliers International | Minneapolis - St. Paul

Connect with Nathan














Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on LinkedIn
Please reload


September 6, 2019

Please reload

Untitled design (29).png
  • LinkedIn Social Icon
  • Twitter Social Icon
  • Instagram Social Icon
  • White LinkedIn Icon
  • White Twitter Icon


Defined by our spirit of enterprise, Colliers Minnesota is a leading, full-service commercial real estate services organization.  We are dedicated to providing clients with innovative real estate solutions and the most comprehensive market knowledge. We specialize in understanding our client’s unique business needs in every commercial property type.

Headquartered in the Twin Cities with regional offices in Minnetonka, Minneapolis and Shoreview, Minnesota, Colliers International | Minneapolis-St. Paul consists of more than 240 local professionals. Our expertise extends into every aspect of today’s commercial real estate business including architecture, brokerage, facility services, investment sales, project management and property management.

Globally we are represented by more than 15,000 Colliers International professionals operating out of 502 offices in 67 countires.