We're all holding our collective breath to see where Amazon will set up their new headquarters. The main players appear to be large metropolises on the East Coast like DC, Boston, Philly, Miami, and many more. But Amazon isn't the only company looking to move to the heart of a major city — enterprises such as McDonald's, Reebok, and Nestlé have decided to relocate to urban zip codes as well. Why is everyone picking up and moving from their suburban homes?Tech companies are looking to branch out of the West Coast (aka Silicon Valley), which has been the go-to spot for anyone looking to be a contender in the tech world. Take Northern Virginia, an area that's becoming the 21st century "East Coast version of Silicon Valley." Cities such as Reston, VA, are still working on developing suburban towns into urban areas with increased accessibility via public transportation. In addition to creating new tech hubs, companies are also taking advantage of redefining the professional landscape in prominent cities.
We're not just talking about the big players like Reebok and McDonald's, but also smaller operations (start-ups, small businesses, and mid-size companies) are able to truly optimize their value by obtaining an urban address over a suburban one. We can't say it enough — accessibility is a hot commodity, and cities are able to offer more than the suburbs can. Companies that have put in time and money to create efficient commutes for their employees are able to attract and retain better talent, therefore growing the value of their business.
This is a trend anyone and everyone should be following, because the talent you want is flocking in and around major urban playgrounds in America. Yes, I'm talking about millennials! If you're picturing a teen glued to their phone, think again: Millennials are actually between the ages of 22 and 37. This avocado-toast-loving generation is shifting the real estate market by looking for life in and outside of the city.
Due to the hefty price tag that's slapped on urban living, young adults are searching for cheaper homes that are still just a metro ride away from city centers. Again, the key is accessibility. Just because people want to live more affordable lives by cozying up on the outskirts of cities, doesn't mean they don't want to work in them. On the contrary — finding a job and home that are both steps away from multiple transit options is exactly what millennials want, according to a study from Porch!
So maybe your office is in the city, but isn't in the most convenient spot for public transit access (within a 10 minute walk to metro, commuter rail, etc). What can you do? Provide a shuttle service, create a rideshare program for your workers, or offer commuter benefits. Any one of these suggestions can help remove commuter stress, decrease company taxes, and build a better sense of community in your work environment.
A little investment in your employees can go a long way!