Brisbane CBD businesses facing existential threat after COVID-19 with people preferring to work from home

9 September 2021

Dr Annabelle Neall from UQ's School of Psychology provides comment in an ABC article discussing the long-term effects of people working from home due to COVID-19. 

In a monthly survey of office landlords, the Property Council of Australia has revealed today that only 60 per cent of Brisbane workers are back in the city — a drop in numbers that has not been seen since this time last year.

Dr Neall said the long-term workplace changes brought on by the pandemic would remain for some time.

"The effects of the pandemic will last well beyond once we hit our vaccination rates and targets and our borders reopen," Dr Neall said.

She said firms need to highlight the social and collaborative benefits of in-person workplaces, with a renewed focus on the mental and physical health of employees.

"So [implementing] physical barriers in terms of the potential for spread between employees, increased cleaning procedures," she said.

"But making sure that they're psychologically safe, that there is security in knowing what happens if we go back into another lockdown – what the transition arrangements are."

Read the article