Isio 'open for business' as it begins hybrid working trials

Consultancy starts afresh in eight new offices as lockdowns come to an end

Jonathan Stapleton
clock • 2 min read
Isio chief executive Andrew Coles says it is too soon to put formal policy in place
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Isio chief executive Andrew Coles says it is too soon to put formal policy in place

Isio is to trial different hybrid working patterns over the next few months as the company explores the best way of working in a new post-pandemic flexible environment.

The consultant said it was in a "slightly different" situation to most businesses as it was established just two weeks before the first lockdown in March last year - meaning its teams will now be starting afresh in eight brand new sites across the country that have all been designed to offer a flexible and modern approach to office working.

Isio said its new offices have varied zones such as collaborative hubs for team get togethers, quiet library space for more focused work and study, a coffee catch up area as well as more traditional desk arrangements.

The firm said it was advised by independent property consultant Melvin Rose - the former chair of the occupiers' group at the British Council of Offices - on the new arrangements.

Isio said it will be trialling different hybrid working patterns over the next few months as the company explores the best way of working in a new flexible environment.

Chief executive Andrew Coles said: "This is unchartered territory for all businesses and it's far too soon to put a formal policy in place when we need to test and learn to see what works and what could be improved.

"We have engaged with our 600 employees over the last 16 months in the design of the offices, seeking feedback as to how they want to manage their working environment in the future and what benefits they find both at home and in the office. This has been built into our office and IT infrastructure, including enhanced AV facilities."

He added: "There is no doubt that working from home can offer a more flexible approach to the working day, can provide an incredibly focused environment away from distractions and the lack of commute has given back valuable personal time to spend with family and friends.  

"However, we also know from the feedback that our teams miss being together. They miss the team meetings, being able to catch up whilst making a drink, having chance conversations that spark new ideas as you see people around. They also miss the distinction between work and home which, if not addressed, can have a negative impact on mental wellbeing."

From a client perspective, Coles said Isio was very much "open for business" and had seen more clients starting to suggest physical meetings again.

He added: "As a people business we have embraced the chance to reignite those relationships in a safe way and it's great to be able to invite people to come and see our new offices."

Coles concluded: "The trial will allow us to try things, get feedback and from there we can create a balanced framework which best supports us and our clients as we all learn to adapt to this new way of working."

This article is part of a Professional Pensions' series about the return to the office. To find out more - and to learn what other firms in the industry are planning - visit: www.professionalpensions.com/feature/4034784/pensions-industry-returning-office

 

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