Is the future bright for Oxford?

Is the future bright for Oxford?
Is Oxford open for business?

19 June 2017, by Savills Research

Oxford needs to invigorate its city centre office space to appeal more to office workers and create a stronger business community


Savills research examines the opinions of British office workers to identify trends that will affect future workspace design in the UK.

In What Workers Want 2016, produced by Savills in association with the British Council for Offices (BCO), data for Oxfordshire showed that 87% of respondents spend the majority of their time in a corporate office. This is in comparison to 77% for the wider UK. With a lower proportion working at home or remotely, this suggests that the office market is relatively more important within Oxford. Getting the location and specification right is essential.

The survey also showed that only 19% of workers in Oxford are highly satisfied with the cluster of business and networking opportunities. For Cambridge the result was 29%. With one of the lowest scores for this factor, is there as strong a business community in Oxford as there could be? Companies may feel connected, but office workers feel less so. A more geographically focused business community, particularly in the city centre, would help.

When it came to location, 44% of Oxfordshire respondents preferred a rural office, the highest of all UK locations surveyed. Only one-third of respondents would prefer a city-centre location, the lowest UK location surveyed. Arguably, office workers do not see the city centre as a viable location due to the lack of appropriate office space.

Is there a perception that Oxford city centre is not open for business? With delivery of new office space, its image should improve significantly.


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