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Is remote working here to stay after COVID-19?

Woman working remotely from her sofa

After a year of many office employees working from home, it has become the norm for us to conduct important meetings over video calls, send our co-workers an email or instant message when we need to ask them a question and eat lunch by ourselves at our kitchen tables. However, with the UK now starting to open up again after lockdown, could this be the end of the traditional office and the start of a primarily remote workforce? Even with the benefits working from home can bring, we’re not so sure.

Remote working isn’t a new concept and it was growing in popularity before the pandemic struck. In fact, during 2019, 5.1% of the UK population worked from home compared to 4.3% in 2015, with more and more businesses offering this as a perk in an effort to attract new talent and retain them.

Many business’ attitudes to remote work have substantially changed over the past year, with it teaching them that employees don’t need to be sat in their physical office in order to be productive at work. For this reason, JP Morgan, HSBC, Dropbox and Microsoft are just some of the large organisations that have said that some or all of their staff can continue to work from home permanently – even when social distancing is no longer required.

So, does this mean that smaller businesses should also follow suit?

Remote working is a perk that many employees have enjoyed during lockdown due to the time and money saved from not having to travel into an office 5 days a week. Not only that, but they have been given the freedom to work at a pace that suits them. No person is 100% productive during every hour of the working day – and when inspiration dwindles, your employees likely feel more comfortable stepping away from their desk and clearing their head in the comfort of their own homes.

However, we don’t think the pandemic and the ways we have had to adapt signal the end of the physical workplace. Instead, many companies will move towards offering flexible working to their employees, rather than having every one of them solely working from home.

This means that going forward, a large proportion of employees will likely spend a combination of their time doing their job from home and from the office, as well as having more control over the hours they work.

Why ‘remote working’ will become ‘flexible working’

Believe it or not, not every employee enjoys working from their sofa and wants homeworking to become the new normal – full-time, at least. According to a survey of 1,000 people conducted by Envoy and Wakefield Research in 2020, after COVID, 94% of employees want to work from the office at least once a week. You may also be surprised to learn that 46% of those surveyed said that five days was the ideal number of days to spend in the office!

The survey found various reasons for this, such as people missing going out for lunch instead of making it for themselves, and being able to spend time away from their families who can cause a distraction when working from home. However, the main thing that employees said they missed was face-to-face interactions with their co-workers.

Employees talking during meeting

Before the pandemic, it was normal for us to spend most of our time with our colleagues each week. We’d often grab lunch with them, attend meetings together, and have chats throughout the day as we worked from the same office. For those that live alone, seeing their team at work may be the only time they interact with someone face-to-face for days or even weeks, which can be a lonely experience.

Seeing your team members regularly also helps you build stronger relationships with them – and being friends with the people we work with can be massive morale and productivity boosters as this is proven to increase engagement levels. Additionally, if your staff feel comfortable confiding in each other when they’re experiencing issues, such as struggling with their workload or getting a particular piece of work completed, they can reduce stress and get their worries solved faster. A problem shared is a problem halved, after all – and sharing these conversations in person can feel much less formal than over a video call.

For these reasons, instead of a shift to full-time remote work, we predict that flexible working will become more prevalent and desired by employees.

How to enable flexible working

For many businesses, offering flexible working isn’t as simple as telling your employees to work whenever they want. It’s still important that there are overlaps between when your team members are ‘in the office’ (whether physically or virtually) for communication and productivity to remain high. For example, it’s advised to have core working hours that everyone in the business must adhere to each day (such as between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM on Monday to Friday), with any meetings being held in this time window.

With some meetings requiring face-to-face interactions, and many workers missing watercooler chats, you may want to offer employees the opportunity to work from home a few times a week, with the ability to change which days these are each week.

One way you can ensure that everything runs smoothly when managing a flexible working team is by investing in the right digital tools to help everyone stay connected. For example, Ayoa is a work management app that is perfect for distributed workers to collaborate together on projects and keep track of when their colleagues are available. Using Ayoa’s team pulse dashboard, your employees can add updates when they start work and clock off for the day, as well as give a brief overview of what they’re currently working on – so everyone is kept in the loop no matter where they are.

Employees working in Tec Marina office

You should also make sure that your physical office space is set up to offer flexible working as staff should be able to enter and leave the premises at different times of the day without compromising your security. If you rent your office space, make sure to check this with the owner of your building to see if this is possible.

Looking for a new office in South Wales? Tec Marina is located just outside Cardiff, in the beautiful location of Penarth Marina, and is already set up for you to provide increased flexibility to your team. As well as offering 24/7 access to the building for residents, our friendly reception team will be on hand to handle your mail when you’re not in the office, as well as help you with anything else you need.

Our fully serviced offices are also regularly cleaned and include access to a free onsite gym, rentable meeting rooms and well-stocked kitchen areas, plus our building is a short walk from Cogan train station and a free public car park. To find out more about our available office space, give us a call on 02921 678391 or email contact@tecmarina.com.

Office space available in Cardiff: Why choose Tec Marina?

Looking for the perfect office in Cardiff to relocate your team? Maybe you’re a start-up looking for its very first office space to call your own? Whatever the case may be, we have some great news… Tec Marina now has a number of serviced offices available to rent which are equipped with all the facilities you need to help you keep your employees happy, healthy and motivated!

Offering bright and spacious breakout areas, fully-equipped offices and exciting facilities such as a free on-site gym for residents, Tec Marina is the perfect home for forward-thinking businesses to reach their goals and become part of a wonderful community. Located in Penarth Marina, just outside of Cardiff, you can get inspired and impress your guests with the stunning scenery, while never being too far from the hustle and bustle of the city centre.

We are also complying with current COVID-19 guidelines set out by the Welsh government to keep our residents feeling safe. Tec Marina has plenty of room to allow for social distancing and the building is regularly cleaned to a high standard.

Whether you’re a one-man-band or your company is made up of multiple teams, we’re sure to have the ideal office space to suit your needs – and we’re happy to announce that we now have a number of our flexible, fully serviced offices now available to rent!

So, why should you choose Tec Marina for your new office space?

It’s in a great central location

Tec Marina is ideally situated in the beautiful location of Penarth Marina, so you can enjoy the nearby green spaces and the beautiful view of the dock on your lunch break, or whenever you need to get up from your desk and grab some fresh air! You can also take advantage of the supermarket and petrol station that’s just a stone’s throw away from the building, as well as the great selection of pubs, cafes and restaurants that the town of Penarth has to offer.

Boats in Penarth Marina

Not only do you have everything you need nearby, but Tec Marina is extremely easy for your staff and visitors to get to. If you or your employees use public transport, Cogan railway station is a 5 to 10-minute walk from the building and is a short train ride away from Cardiff Central – Cardiff’s principal station. Prefer to drive? Tec Marina has great links to the motorway and we offer affordable on-site parking for residents, as well as secured bicycle storage for any keen cyclists! Have a large team or a lot of visitors to your office? There’s also a free public car park just a short walk away from the building.

It has all the facilities you need

Tec Marina residents have access to a wide range of on-site facilities and services, including a free 5-star gym with changing rooms and shower facilities, two spacious kitchen areas stocked with all the free tea and coffee you could ever want, and private meeting rooms that can be booked whenever you need. Additionally, our bright, open atrium is always available for lunch breaks and meetings, boasting plenty of seating areas and screens that you can connect your electronic devices to.

Kitchen in Tec Marina

All offices include superfast 1Gb fibre optic broadband and IT support from our trusted partners. Additionally, our friendly reception team is on-hand each day to greet your guests and make them feel welcome, collect and sort your business mail for you, and provide help with anything else you need – all you have to do is ask!

We focus on health and wellness

We know that keeping physically and mentally healthy is vital for keeping employees happy in the workplace, which was a huge motivator behind designing Tec Marina. It can be difficult to plan your fitness fix around your working day, so all residents have access to our free on-site gym at any time of the day, Monday to Friday – so you can work out before or after work, or even during your lunch break. Our gym is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment for cardio and weight training, and we also offer showers and changing rooms on-site.

Tec Marina gym

We want everyone who visits Tec Marina to feel safe and that their health is being looked out for, which is why we have taken all necessary steps to comply with COVID-19 guidelines issued by the Welsh government. As well as ensuring that regular high-quality cleaning of the building is maintained (including our gym when it reopens), we have installed automatic hand sanitising stations at the entrance of the building, its kitchen areas and washrooms, put up screens between the seating in our atrium and implemented a one-way system throughout the building.

It’s home to a great community

Our reception team is always happy to help our residents and any visitors to the building with anything they need. However, one of the reasons that Tec Marina is such a great place to work is due to the friendly and supportive community made up of both staff and residents. Whether you’re grabbing your lunch from the kitchen or sitting down and having a 5-minute coffee break, there’s always someone to have a chat with!

The Tec Marina community is also extremely giving and charitable. In fact, we regularly host fundraising events that our residents are always more than happy to get involved with, whether it’s taking part in a raffle or making cakes, cookies and other tasty treats for a bake sale. Just some of the charities and causes we have supported over the years (and continue to support) include Comic Relief, Children in Need and Macmillan Cancer Support.

Close up of table filled with cakes

Can you see yourself at Tec Marina? We have a number of offices available for teams of various sizes – whether you need a private office or a shared co-working space. To book your virtual or physical viewing, please contact us by emailing contact@tecmarina.com or calling 02921 678391.

Our response to COVID-19: How we’re helping to keep Tec Marina’s residents safe

Like many other workplaces across the UK, Tec Marina has been quieter in recent months, with many of the faces we love seeing everyday temporarily working from home. During this time, the Tec Marina team has continued to provide support to our residents, and we have been working hard to make changes to the building to help our staff and residents feel safe when they do return to work.

Due to lockdown restrictions in Wales gradually being lifted, more businesses will soon be given the green light to reopen and for their employees to return to the workplace. When this happens, we want everyone at Tec Marina to feel confident that they’ll be able to adhere to the cleanliness and social distancing advice that has been issued for companies in the UK.

How has Tec Marina prepared to prevent the spread of COVID-19?

As Tec Marina is located just outside of Cardiff in South Wales, we are following the guidelines and requirements that have been issued by the Welsh Government. In Wales, it has currently been advised for businesses to take “reasonable measures” to ensure their employees are able to keep a 2-metre distance from others. In addition to this, UK businesses must regularly clean and sanitise frequently touched surfaces.

To prevent the spread of Coronvarius, guidance has also been issued for people to regularly wash and sanitise their hands. This means that businesses need to provide employees and any other visitors to their premises with the facilities to do so.

Close-up of person washing hands

Tec Marina has more open spaces and breakout areas than many other serviced offices, so there’s plenty of space for everyone to social distance. However, we have recently gone one step further by installing screens between the seating in our breakout areas and rearranging this seating to ensure that residents are able to keep a 2-metre distance.

Our premises will continue to be regularly cleaned and sanitised to a high standard by our excellent cleaning staff, and this is something that has always been important to us! We have also installed automatic hand sanitising stations throughout the building. These can be found at the entrance of Tec Marina, as well as outside our toilets and changing facilities.

As more employees return to their workplaces over the coming weeks, it has also been theorised that companies may be asked to stagger their working hours and any breaks they take throughout the day. This can make it easier for your employees to maintain a suitable distance at work, as well as help to reduce large volumes of people travelling on public transport during peak times. All residents of Tec Marina have 24/7 access to the building (including during weekends), so you can offer your staff the flexibility they need during this time.

Tec Marina has a range of flexible and serviced offices to rent in the scenic location of Penarth Marina, near Cardiff. Surrounded by green spaces and offering all the facilities you need with plenty of room for social distancing, Tec Marina can provide the perfect uplifting environment for your business’s return to work.

Find out more about our available office space or contact us by calling 02921 678391 or emailing contact@tecmarina.com to book your virtual or physical viewing!

Tec Marina Welcomes the Lord Mayor of London

This afternoon, we were very excited to welcome the Lord Mayor of London to Tec Marina.

During the visit, Lord Mayor Alderman Peter Estlin and his party met with Chris and Gaile Griffiths, founders of OpenGenuis and Tec Marina, and took a tour around the Tec Marina office space.

A selection of Tec Marina business owners and CEOs enjoyed refreshments in the the building’s central atrium with the Lord Mayor.

Peter Estlin is the 691st Lord Mayor of the City of London. A key reason for his visit to Cardiff, the Lord Mayor of London hopes to strengthen the links between the two cities. As part of his wider role, Alderman Estlin promotes the UK as a top global destination for foreign investment, innovation and technology. Read more about the Lord Mayor’s visit to South Wales here.

“I’m delighted to be visiting Cardiff and meeting a number of key business leaders to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing our two cities. Cardiff is an innovative hub with an increasingly vibrant financial and digital offer.”
– Lord Mayor of the City of London, Peter Estlin

Tec Marina Manager, Rebekah Raynor, said: “We are very excited to have hosted the Lord Mayor of London and his party. What a great honour that the Lord Mayor chose to visit us here at Tec Marina!”

Chris Griffiths (left), Lord Mayor Alderman Peter Estlin (centre), Gaile Griffiths (right)

“We’ve built a small piece of Silicon Valley here in Wales and we were delighted that the new Right Honourable Lord Mayor of London chose to visit OpenGenius, the team behind the development, and to meet many of the other fast-growth businesses located here in Tec Marina.”
– Gaile Griffiths, Operations Director at OpenGenius

If you’re interested in finding out more about office space at our innovation hub, get in touch with Tec Marina today: 029 2167 8391 / contact@tecmarina.com.

Tec Marina raises £1,400 for Children in Need

In this week’s Children in Need activities, Tec Marina raised an impressive total of £1,400.

Today’s Children in Need event kicked off with a Bake Sale. Tec Marina residents baked a variety of delicious bakes from Victoria sponge and chocolate caramel cupcakes, to cornflake cakes and even vegan flapjacks! Open Genius’s Liv won this year’s Star Baker with her exquisite carrot cake.

Tec Marina Children in Need Bake Sale 2018

Next on the ‘Pudsey Timetable’ was the Ping Pong Final. A sport taken very seriously here at Tec Marina, the week-long Ping Pong tournament came to an exciting end today. The nail-biting final between Layth (from Wealthify) and Rob (from Credas) resulted in a 21-15 victory for winner Layth.

Tec Marina Ping Pong Finalists 2018

For the past few weeks, Tec Marina residents have been taking part in a ‘Guess the bear’s name’ competition in the hope of winning the giant teddy bear up for grabs. With the winning name of ‘Leonard’, Beks (from Tec Marina) has kindly chosen to donate the cuddly bear to Welsh children’s hospice, Tŷ Hafan.

Tec Marina Children in Need Giant Bear

With a huge number of generous donations, including a signed Star Wars print, an M&S Hamper and numerous bottles, the Raffle took place in Tec Marina’s Atrium where residents gathered to watch the magic unfold.

Tec Marina Children in Need Raffle 2018

Tec Marina would like to thank all the companies for getting involved with baking, raffle donations, and for donating to the wonderful cause.

Charity events, like this week’s Children in Need activities, are just one of the many reasons we love working in our shared workspace. If you’re interested in finding out more about office or coworking space at Tec Marina, get in touch today: 029 2167 8391 / contact@tecmarina.com.

The Great Tec Marina Bake Off

September only means one thing… The World’s Biggest Coffee Morning. This year, Tec Marina managed to raise an impressive total of £265.20 for Macmillan Cancer Support!

Hosted by Wealthify, the event took place in our Tec Marina Games Room, where the cakes were beautifully presented with flowers and balloons. Bakes included everything from Chocolate Whoopie Pies to Almond Cake, and Elderflower & Lemon Cake to Banana Loaf – to name just a few.

“As many of our employee’s families or friends have been diagnosed or know someone who has been diagnosed with cancer, it was a great opportunity to raise some money for a much needed cause and let’s be honest, any excuse for cake! This wouldn’t have been possible without the support from all the business’s within Tec Marina, and we’d like to thank all the keen bakers and cake eaters for contributing!” – Wealthify

Tec Marina Bake Off

We’d like to say a huge thank you to Wealthify for hosting, the bakers for baking and to everyone who came just to eat cake, we thank you too for your generous donations.

Community events, like today’s Bake off, are just one of the many reasons we love working in our shared workspace. If you’re interested in finding out more about office or coworking space at Tec Marina, get in touch today: 029 2167 8391 / contact@tecmarina.com.

Tec Marina does Children in Need 2018

Last Friday, Tec Marina fundraised for Children in Need with cakes, raffle prizes and a ping-pong tournament. We’re proud to announce that this year our fun and games raised a total of £966.71!

Children in Need kicked off early this year with a week-long ping-pong tournament. Ping-pong has always been a sure-fire way to get residents up from their desks. This year’s tournament had 41 sign-ups and ran from round one on Monday through to the big Friday final. This year’s winner was George from Famous Publicity, with an impressive score of 36-19, winning him the coveted title and Tec Marina trophy.

Ping Pong tournament

For those whose skills lay in the kitchen rather than the games room, our Children in Need Bake Off was the time to shine. Our bake stall proved a popular hang out throughout the day and featured delicious home bakes such as gingerbread Pudsey biscuits, millionaire shortbread and lemon Madeira cake – and not a soggy bottom in sight. This year’s bake-off winner was Adriana from Scarlet Design for her sell-out carrot cake. Well done, Adriana.

Cake selection

In the build-up to Friday, residents had been kindly donating prizes to our Children in Need raffle. Our table of wonderful prizes included champagne, chocolates and luxurious smellies. The draw drew quite a crowd and Tec Marina Manager, Beks, did a great job of calling out all 31 winners.

Raffle draw

We’d like to extend a massive thank you to all those who got involved with the fun and helped us raise such a brilliant sum for a very worthwhile cause.

Community events, like Children in Need, are just one of the many reasons we love working in our shared workspace. If you’re interested in finding out about office or coworking space at Tec Marina – get in touch today 029 2167 8391 / contact@tecmarina.com.

Tec Marina runners gear up for the Cardiff Half Marathon

Tec Marina Running Team Tec Marina marathon team pose before their training session.

On October 1st, a group of 14 runners from various Tec Marina companies will take part in a half marathon spanning the whole city of Cardiff, with the route taking them right passed our office space.

The team are aiming to raise £3,000 for Tŷ Hafan, one of the leading UK children’s palliative care charities based throughout Wales. The charity ensures that local children suffering from terminal illnesses and their families can make the most out of their time left together.

Louise Cornelius, a runner from OpenGenius, said…

We all voted to decide on which charity to fundraise for… and I’m delighted that Tŷ Hafan won the vote. It’s great to be running for a charity so close to home!

You can donate to their cause on JustGiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/companyteams/TecMarina

We wish them the best of luck on the day!

Tec Marina Bootcamp – Week 1

On Monday, we started the week off right with our very first Tec Marina bootcamp session. Personal Trainer, Matt Bowring, took a group of 14 Tec Marina residents into our gym for a lunchtime fitness fix.

As this was the first session out of 8, we partnered up and went through some tough fitness tests, including timed cardio, press-ups and sit ups. We noted down our scores and will be using these as a starting point to track our progress over the next 8 weeks. Fitness tests out of the way, Coach Matt then made the decision to inflict some serious pain on the Tec Marina bootcampers with a group squatting session, and we certainly felt the burn.

Squats

But the pain will not be stopping there. Each bootcamper has been set some weekly homework. 2 x 20-min workouts are to be completed by everyone before next Monday. No excuses are valid when you have a gym in the same building as your office.

Session over, high fives all round, and time to hit the showers. Despite the wobbly legs, the afternoon saw a peak in motivation with lots of post workout endorphins floating around the place.

With a full house already booked for next Monday, we’re looking forward to seeing how far we can progress as a group over the next 8 weeks – Go team!

Health and well-being are high on the agenda at Tec Marina, and that’s why we want to offer sessions like these to our residents for no extra cost. Follow our progress over on our Twitter page.