GLG Network Survey: Corporate Back-to-Office Plans

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GLG interviewed 120 C-level executives working across the US, Europe and APAC who discussed their back-to-office plans and whether or not they may be considering physical changes to their offices to minimise the potential spread of COVID-19 and prioritise employee safety.

What will you learn from this survey?

  • Respondents discussed their back-to-office plans and whether or not they may be considering physical changes to their offices to minimise the potential spread of COVID-19 and prioritise employees’ safety.
  • The research also looked into respondents’ intention to acquire new offices to accommodate relocated employees outside of the city during the pandemic.
  • Lastly, respondents commented on their key selection criteria for offices including transportation links, carbon rating, price and technology.

Examples of findings:

  • When asked how many days per week most employees will work in the office in the future, 61% of APAC respondents and 41% of US respondents mentioned 4-5 days, compared to only 22% in Europe.
  • Overall, 49% of C-level executives stated they are already considering to restructure their current office space and 28% mentioned they will be disposing their current offices in the next 2 years.
  • 38% of respondents mentioned they will be looking for flexible/co-working office space (short-term lease) when thinking of acquiring new offices, with only 17% still considering longer term leases of 5 years or more.


The GLG Surveys team drafted the questionnaire with the support of GLG Network Member, Peter Damesik, former Chairman of EMEA Research at CBRE.

The standard deliverable includes:

  • 1 x Individual responses (“raw data”) in Excel.
  • 1 x PPT report with aggregated data.
  • In-depth PowerPoint report of survey findings presented by the Network Member via webcast (optional).


  • When do you plan to start bringing employees back into the office?
  • Once returned to the office, how will working practices have changed compared to before the pandemic?
  • What changes are you planning on making to your office?
  • Has the company moved or changed its office(s) compared to the situation prior to the pandemic?
  • Thinking about acquiring new offices, what will your company be looking for?
  • Does the company plan to dispose existing offices?
  • How do you expect your capital and operational expenditure to change in the following years compared to pre-COVID-19 levels?
  • Thinking about the size of the company’s office and the number of employees working there, will employees be working at the same occupational densities in the office compared with before the pandemic?


The survey is available to subscribers of the Financial Business Services (FBS) and Real Estate (RE) sectors (Limited subscriptions and above). Please contact your GLG representative for details on your firm’s access or click the button below to inquire.

Request other available and upcoming Network Surveys within the sector:

Financial Business Services (FBS) 

  • SPACs – New! 
    • 70 SPAC sponsors and investors discussed current attitudes and trends around this form of investment and provided their views on willingness to sponsor/invest in a SPAC in the European markets.
    • Questionnaire was drafted by Benjamin Pell, Founder and Managing Partner at Verdene Group.
  • GLG Tracker: Non-performing Loans II
    • Second survey to follow the first wave conducted in October 2020. 30 directors working in banks across Spain, Italy and Greece commented on the demand of Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) in Covid-19 times, whether they are seeing an increase in NPLs, potential supply of NPLs and the appetite for demand.
    • Questionnaire was drafted by Najib Nathoo, Managing Director of the Rede Company and former CEO of Hoist Finance Region West.
  • Payment Systems 
    • 70 executives in the payments space (AMEX, Visa, Stripe, WorldPay, etc.) commented on the impact of Covid-19 on the market trends in the payment space, transaction volume, competitive landscape.
    • Questionnaire was drafted by Eric Grover, Principal at Intrepid Ventures who specializes in providing corporate development and strategy consulting to payment networks across the US and Europe.

Real Estate (RE) 

  • GLG Tracker: Shopping Mall & High Street Rental Tenants/ Commercial Prime II
    • 60 current property directors at mid to major corporates discussed about their views on needs for commercial prime (i.e., office space) post Covid-19 combined with the high street angle on real estate executives, who had discussed about the rental prices for shops on the high street and in shopping malls.
    • Questionnaire was drafted by Pete Cooper, former Director of UK Shopping Centres at Hammerson PLC until May of 2019. First wave data released September 2020.

To request data for these surveys, or see our other ones available, follow the link to our Network Survey Hub



Please be advised that GLG Network Surveys operate differently than traditional GLG consultations, surveys, teleconferences, etc. and it is advisable that you consult with your firm’s legal and/or compliance department to review your use of the product and the payment for such work under your current subscription.

By downloading this document and/or participating in the Network Survey, you understand and agree that the information and material provided by GLG, including survey results and survey proposal information, is provided for your own insight and informational purposes only. You further acknowledge and agree that this is a Network Survey for multiple GLG clients, and the results will be provided to all GLG clients that agree to participate in the Network Survey and GLG clients that agree to purchase the Survey results in the future. All survey results do not constitute investment advice or a recommendation. In using this Survey, you agree to hold Gerson Lehrman Group and the Survey respondents harmless and free of all liability as a result of your use of this Network Survey, other than liability resulting from the gross negligence or wilful misconduct of the protected party. You otherwise agree to be bound by Gerson Lehrman Group’s Usage Policies in your interactions with Gerson Lehrman Group and your receipt of services. These Survey results are for are for client’s own use and client shall not redistribute, disseminate, publish, or display the same, in whole or in part, to any third parties or publicly without the prior written permission of Gerson Lehrman Group, except explicitly set forth in your agreement with GLG. This survey will be double-blinded to both client and respondent. GLG reserves the right to restrict the number of clients that can pre-commit access. These Network Surveys are priced outside of standard GLG subscriptions but at a substantially reduced price to commissioning a fully proprietary GLG Network Survey. Upon finding these terms acceptable, please send an affirmative confirmation via email, which GLG will file in its records. Once confirmed, please note that the Client’s agreement to purchase the Network Survey is a legally binding and irrevocable commitment. If the survey is not included within your subscription, GLG will invoice Client for the fees due for the Network Survey. Please note that some respondents may not be Network Members, and the Terms and Conditions of Network Membership would not apply to such respondents and detailed records for them will not be available aside from the information that GLG captures in the Network Survey.

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