Airbnb for Work Expands To Help Australian and New Zealand Companies and Professionals Keep Up With the Changing Ways We Work

A few weeks ago, we shared news about the exponential growth we’re seeing in companies using Airbnb for Work: to date, 36,000 companies in Australia and New Zealand and 700,000 companies worldwide have had employees sign up and book with Airbnb for Work.

In fact, Airbnb’s recent Evolution of Work survey showed when it comes to travelling for work, more than 6 in 10 Australians (61%) would prefer to stay in an Airbnb with nearly half (49%) saying that they want the comforts of a real home when travelling on business.

According to the survey findings, the ability to cook rather than eating out (44%), being able to wash their clothes (35%), having their own space and privacy (33%), having room to spread out their working documents and files (32%), and having a separate area to entertain and catch up with friends in different cities (22%) were the main drivers for workers turning to the sharing economy for work-based travel.

It’s not surprising then, that we’re seeing this global business travel trend mirrored by the significant growth in bookings for Airbnb for Work. From 2015 to 2016, Airbnb for Work bookings tripled. And, from 2016 to 2017 bookings again tripled.

Experiences for team building, Homes for offsites and meetings, new options for people relocating for work

There are a number of unique ways Airbnb can help companies and professionals keep up with the changing ways we work. Starting today, Airbnb for Work will roll out a new strategic direction to bring the best of Airbnb to the professional world, and help foster a sense of belonging – even at work. We’re expanding into three new areas to help companies attract, retain, and motivate talent: Experiences on Airbnb for team-building, Airbnb Homes for offsites and meetings, and new options for people relocating for work.

“We know there are unique attributes Airbnb can offer Australian and New Zealand companies to help them attract and retain talent. With the costs of replacing an employee estimated to be about 3X their salary, it’s more important than ever for companies to ensure employees are engaged and motivated at work. 

A relaxing environment helps people open up to connect;  a productive environment helps people achieve their shared goal more effectively; while helping people experience something new together helps teams bond and form meaningful connections.”

David Holyoke, Global Head of Airbnb for Work

Team building — there’s more to it than trust falls

When people show vulnerability to each other and participate in activities together, they connect on a deeper level than when simply going out for drinks. And, what’s good for people is good for businesses. According to Korn Ferry, companies with engaged employees make 2.5X the revenue and are 87% more likely to retain their employees, with team building being one of the most effective ways to foster engagement within a company.

Unorthodox perks are an essential way to attract, retain and motivate top talent. Experiences, not cash, are the new corporate bonus. In today’s hyper-competitive talent environment, once you’ve recruited great employees, you want to keep them. Journeys of self-fulfillment and discovery can produce the kind of creative sparks and life-clarifying moments that seldom come when staring dead-eyed at another PowerPoint. Airbnb group Experiences — from sailing lessons to pastry-making classes with a Michelin chef — help teams bond and form meaningful connections.

These newly-featured Experiences for professionals introduce a better way for teams to bond, and are currently available in more than 800 markets around the world, including Australia and New Zealand, and available in a number of categories, including wellness, team-building, and social impact.

Airbnb homes for offsites and meetings

Providing individuals and teams with the freedom they need to grow and collaborate is top of mind for many companies. Our Evolution of Work study found that 65% of Australian employees believe flexible work and the ability to work from home or co-working space when they want, or need to makes an employer more appealing to work for. An overwhelming 81% of Australians would like to work remotely, while 40% are already doing it at least once a week.

The spaces where people spend time away from the office make a big difference. Sterile conference rooms aren’t motivating and don’t foster creativity. However, relaxing and productive environments help people open up to connect and contribute; they help teams achieve their shared goals more effectively.

Knowing this, Airbnb for Work is now showcasing homes where teams can create and collaborate. These are homes where hosts indicate their unique spaces are suitable for events, and many have work-friendly amenities like wifi, self check-in, etc.

We’ve already seen our community organically use Airbnbs for work offsites, and it’s clear companies could benefit from environments that can be catalysts for belonging and personal connection.

A new way to relocate for work

Today’s workforce is global and on the move. According to BDO, nearly 20% of employees around the world are eager to relocate.

We can all agree moving is stressful – friendships are tested, a partner’s career may be disrupted, and in a new place hardly anything can feel familiar. Acclimating to a new community can be one of the most challenging parts of a move. So much so that according to a Right Management survey, more than 40% of international assignments are judged to be failures by senior executives, with cultural adjustment issues being a top reason. We also know most people want to test out neighborhoods or be near new schools for their children (since 35% of corporate moves involve children). People want to feel grounded the instant they move to a new place.

So, we’re expanding our work in relocations to help more professionals instantly feel like they belong in their new communities. ​Imagine starting your first job out of college while living in a spacious modern condo in a trendy area, moving with your family into a spacious ranch home with a backyard in the perfect school district, or beginning a new chapter of your life by living in a Victorian classic near the office. Finding a temporary home that actually feels like a home (access to a kitchen, washer/dryer, etc.) provides a much-needed sense of familiarity that can help people cope with the chaos of a relocation.

Airbnb for Work – now more than just business travel

Offering unique ways to travel for work will remain core to Airbnb for Work, but we estimate only 25% of employees within a company travel for work. With Airbnb for Work’s new expansion into team-building experiences, homes for offsites and meetings, and relocations, we now have an opportunity to bring the magic of Airbnb to the rest of the workforce.

We’re looking forward to expanding our Airbnb professional community by continuing to improve the ways professionals collaborate, create and grow – from single freelancers to companies with 100,000+ employees.

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