Forenom’s forecast 2021

Welcome to the New Age of Mobility and Flexibility

Welcome to the New Age of Mobility and Flexibility

Our job as experts in long-stay accommodation is to make the ‘’New Normal’’ work for you and our clients throughout the Nordics and whole Northern Europe.

Working life is changing faster than ever and the lines between travel, work, and living are blurring. What was once a workplace is now a coffeehouse by the sea or an apartment in your favorite city. What was once a foreign land is now a potential work site full of opportunities. Today you can take your work wherever you want to go or take on new work wherever you are. Companies can recruit the best and brightest no matter where they live.

“Before the pandemic we used to live in one place, we called that our house; we went to another place to work, called that the office and we traveled to a third place. And what the pandemic did is it forced us all to do all three activities in one place. And that place with Zoom could suddenly be anywhere,” summarized the Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky.

1. Hybrid model is here to stay

It has been proven that a large amount of our day-to-day office work can be done from anywhere. For this reason, we see that a hybrid model combining in-office and remote work will become the norm for office workers in general, highlighting the industries where the work is mainly located on the internet. Results of our customer survey seem to confirm that, too.

Which of the following do you think best describes the “new normal” after COVID-19? More than 80 % of the respondents to Forenom’s customer survey estimate that the hybrid model combining remote work and present work is the new normal.*

2. We come together for key moments and interacting physically

Our new world of more flexibility allows people to modify their way of working depending on their needs. Many will continue working remotely, but returning to some of the face-to-face meetings can be a relief, too.

A couple of years ago, people were expecting technology to gradually substitute a significant amount of business meetings and physical presence. Nevertheless, during the pandemic many people have seen the negative sides related to meetings behind a screen, and realized the importance of being present, meeting colleagues in person and interacting physically” says Jonas Harsem, Sales Director at Forenom Norway.

It is possible that a new type of business travel will be created when people work remotely but visit headquarters every month or quarter for a longer period.

3. Mobility and flexibility brings opportunities also for project workers, who don’t have luxury to work remotely

During the last 18 months, the strict Covid-19 restrictions have forced entrepreneurs to fight for the limited number of national workers. Now that the restrictions are lifted, foreign project workers have started to return and demand for accommodation services for mobile workers has again reached a high level. Current demand peak for accommodation services is partly due to delayed projects that now need to compensate for the time lost during the restrictions. 

For non-office workers, such as project workers building and maintaining our infrastructure or laboring in manufacturing or retail services, location will of course continue to be a more dictating factor. Even though many people don’t have the luxury to work remotely, they can still enjoy the possibilities of flexibility by taking on new work wherever they are or projects from a new market.

4. Stays are getting longer, for which home-like facilities are well-suited

We also see the change in the needs and requests of the returning workers.

“We have noticed that a lot of companies who used to stay four nights at regular hotels every week have reached out to us to rent serviced apartments instead,” tells Jonathan Fahlén, Business Development Manager at Forenom Sweden.

Maybe not so surprisingly, also requests of pet-friendly apartments have increased a lot. We predict that pet-friendliness, your own kitchen, washing machine and other factors that make one feel at home will continue to increase their value against, for example, free hotel breakfasts.

5. Business travel picking up again, with increased length of stay

Concerning business travel in general, we see clear signs of travel picking up again, and we are on our way to reaching pre-pandemic levels. We are clearly transitioning from a very difficult time to a very exciting time. However, it is clear that business travel has changed during the pandemic. Our client survey tells us that almost half of the companies seek to decrease short business trips.

Does your company plan to reduce one-day or one-night business trips in the future? 45 % of the respondents said that their company will reduce the amount of one-day business trips.*

Respondents see video meetings as an attractive alternative to short business trips. Many also added that in the future there has to be a compelling reason for travelling in person for a single meeting. It is also expected that companies’ environmental programs will reduce the amount of short business trips that can otherwise be organized easily via digital tools. One of our partners, Airbnb, sees the same effect globally.

“The days of getting on a plane for a meeting are gone. The bigger part of the revolution is that the length of stay is going to increase and it’s going to blur with living”, says their CEO Brian Chesky.

6. Work and living are blending

Stays are getting longer, for which the facilities of serviced apartments are well-suited. Serviced-apartments-as-a-service has outperformed the market in many ways globally and domestically, as home-like accommodation with private laundry and kitchen services have proven to be an effective alternative to conventional hotel stays before and during, but also after the pandemic.

It is possible for us to get inspired about business travel again and find the opportunities that the new age of mobility and flexibility bring. When we travel less, but stay longer – it is also toward more responsible business travel for our environment.

What’s best is that whether you’re a company or an employee, you call the shots: Do I recruit gig workers from another city or country? Do I spend the winter in snowy Lapland? Or do I just take a workation** and see how it works out? The great part is that wherever your work, life or inspiration takes you, you can always stay longer in our serviced apartments, aparthotels and hostels.

Online reservation, contact-free arrival and professional cleaning services ensure your stay with Forenom is safe and homelike. Comfy living with your own kitchen also means you’ll enjoy your stay that much longer.

Wherever inspiration takes you – Try a new city

Do you feel like a little change of scenery? Or do you dream about a whole new life in a different city? Now it’s easier than ever to try!

Browse destinations >>

Wherever your project takes you – Stay affordably

When a project takes you or your team far from home, accommodation becomes an important factor. Here’s how you can arrange that affordably.

Tell us where you need to go >>

*Forenom Client Survey 10/2021
** Work + vacation = workation