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Business leaders are getting together at Exeter Science Park in May to help shape the city’s new Future of the Workplace initiative.

Major employers including PKF Francis Clark, Stephens Scown LLP and Crowdcube, will be joined by organisations including the University of Exeter, Exeter City Council and Devon County Council and experts from the likes of Space, Corkscrew, Office Labs, Expedite, Classic Pod Company, Escargo and The Workplace Wellness Company.

They will help shape the initiative, agreeing the areas to focus on, ways to gather and share information including data and best practice, and activity to progress in the coming months.

Findings will be gathered ahead of the publication of The Future of the Workplace report later in the year. As well as local insight and best practice, the report will set out what kind of workplaces Exeter should be aspiring to and provide practical guidance for organisations looking to improve workspaces for their teams.

Exeter Chamber, the city’s leading business organisation, is supporting the initiative.

Jo Caine, chamber director and co-owner of Exeter-based Cathedral Appointments, said: “We are delighted to be supporting the Future of the Workplace initiative. Recruitment and retaining talented people is a key concern for our members. It’s fantastic that Exeter is close to a ‘full employment’ city but that makes it even more important that companies understand what it is that employees and potential new recruits are looking for.

“Creating healthier and happier work environments, and providing the technology, training and support people need, are all key aspects of modern workspaces. We should be celebrating the best and encouraging other businesses to recognise the benefits and do what they can to improve.”

Findings, best practice, the views of different business leaders and employees, along with local examples and the results of surveys will be gathered. There will also be opportunities for people to have their say on topics and provide insight.

Tim Wadsworth, director of Space, said: “We’ve had a brilliant response from companies and experts keen to get involved and help shape The Future of the Workplace. Ultimately we want to make a positive difference, helping organisations improve their workspaces to boost productivity and well-being of employees. We know it makes a huge difference and our aim is that this new initiative will lead to positive changes that support Exeter’s already fantastic reputation as a great place to live and work.”

Watch this space for further information and how you can get involved.

(L-R) Maureen Gori-du-Murden, Exeter City Council, Grace from Space, Jo Caine, Exeter Chamber and Tim from Space at one of Exeter’s most innovative new workspaces, the Met Office supercomputer