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We (Still) Need to Talk about the Office – Professional Practices Alliance Interactive Webinar

We are delighted to invite you to an interactive virtual Professional Practices Alliance (PPA) panel discussion on the future of working arrangements within professional services firms.  

We are also collecting data on market practices in advance of the webinar. We would be very grateful if you could complete this short (5-10 mins) survey. The data will be anonymous and will be circulated to the group so that everyone can benefit from the insights it offers. Please complete the survey here.

Date: Wednesday, 14 April 2021

Time: 9.30 am – 10.30 am BST

Register for this event here

Our expert panel:

Oliver Richards, Orms Designers + Architects Ltd – Founder and Practice Co-Director (Guest Speaker)
Rob Millard, Cambridge Strategy Group – Law Firm Management Consultant
Beth Hale, CM Murray LLP – Partnership and Employment Law specialist

Corinne Staves, Maurice Turnor Gardner LLP – Partnership and LLP Law specialist (Chair)

If England’s COVID roadmap progresses as planned, stringent COVID restrictions should be lifting or lifted during summer 2021. The office and future working arrangements are dominating discussions at all levels within professional services firms.

This topic has been addressed in Professional Practices Alliance (PPA) webinars previously, and remains the source of many questions and comments. However, under lockdown there is no opportunity for roundtable Chatham House discussions to stimulate peer-to-peer discussion, or to provide an understanding of market practice and trends.

The Professional Practices Alliance, therefore, proposes to host an interactive virtual discussion to allow attendees to share their plans, ideas and experiences, and establish whether there are any trends or themes. There will be a panel of experts to offer insights and opinions, but the main objective is to provide a forum for discussion. A large part of this interactive webinar will, therefore, use Zoom polls to share information, and Zoom break-out rooms for attendees to discuss key issues.

This interactive webinar will cover many of the issues and themes addressed in our webinar of the same title in October 2020, but we believe that the interactivity and the relevance of the topic will ensure that this webinar builds on, rather than duplicates, the previous discussions. The webinar will be most successful if everyone is prepared to participate through polls and small group discussions, so please come prepared to turn on your webcam and interact with other attendees.

We would also like to collect data on market practices in advance of the webinar. We would be very grateful if you could complete this short (5 -10 mins) survey. The data will be anonymous and will be circulated to the group so that everyone can benefit from the insights it offers. Please complete the survey here.

Register for this event here

Questions to be discussed at the webinar:

Your people

• What mix of office/WFH working will your business promote?
• What evidence of productivity/efficiency do you have to support your proposed approach?
• Have you sought views from your teams on their short and long term preferences?
• Will you be rigid or flexible about working arrangements? Who will decide?
• Will you distinguish between team members? On what grounds? (e.g. seniority/job role/length of service)

Your business

• Will you re-configure your space?
• Can you force team members to be vaccinated? If you can, would you?
• Can/will you force people to be in the office if they are uncomfortable or unwilling to return?
• Are London/City salary weightings a thing of the past?

Your clients

• What changes do you anticipate in the way the firm and team interact with clients?
• Have you sought client views?
• Will you still devote pre-COVID levels of time and money to BD and international travel?