The Leading News & Information Service For The Facilities, Workplace & Built Environment Community

Our London Tenants Remain Reluctant to Return to Work, says Security Provider

Our London Tenants Remain Reluctant to Return to Work, says Security Provider
23 September 2020

Following the government’s changes to working from home guidance, some are questioning the economic future of our cities if such advice continues. 

Fawad Ahmad, Co-Founder and Director of SmartSec Solutions, a London-based front of house corporate security provider feels that the UK can ill afford the quietness of the initial lockdown. 

Instead, he is calling for changes to city transport operations and additional workplace measures to safeguard the future of the capital city and its businesses.

Ahmad told ThisWeekinFM:Businesses operating in the heart of London, from cafes, restaurants, retail outlets or large corporations, have had a carrot dangled in front of them which has now been snatched away. 


“Make no mistake about it, we risk losing a large number of commercial real estate properties in the heart of the capital.” 

–Fawad Ahmad

Co-Founder and Director, SmartSec Solutions

“We fully support any measures to keep people safe during these challenging times. But we need to start asking some serious questions about the future of London. What will be done to ensure people continue coming back to work in the City?

“The UK cannot afford to see London head back to the eery quiet it experienced at the height of lockdown. We speak to our tenants on a daily basis and many of them were already understandably reluctant to get onto the tube to come to work.”


Fawad Ahmad

Picture: a photograph of Fawad Ahman


Congestion Charge Waiver and Free Parking may Help


Ahman continued:

“Now, with the latest advice, they will simply work from home. To help overcome any fears about coming back to work, the government should seriously consider reviewing the congestion charges and other parking fees to then allow people to drive to work at their convenience, at least for a set period of time. 

“Businesses should also be encouraged to introduce shift patterns to ensure their operations are kept fluid. This will play a huge role in safeguarding the future of a business and its workforce, and keep London’s heart beating.”


The Effect on Commercial Real Estate


“Make no mistake about it, we risk losing a large number of commercial real estate properties in the heart of the capital.” 

One of our corporate buildings with a capacity of 3,000 was recently operating to a maximum occupancy of 200, which it was hitting. Now, we are sure to see that number decrease. Landlords will seriously consider their options if their buildings remain empty. 


The Impact on Physical and Mental Health of Security Staff and other Key Workers


Ahman firmly believes that we cannot underestimate the impact this is having on the mental health and wellbeing of security officers who are managing near-empty buildings on a day to day basis:

“Many, along with other key workers, are using the tube to come to work because they don’t have another option. If they don’t work then they don’t get paid. 

“They are putting both their physical and mental health on the line to help us all come out the other side of this mess. Not only must this be recognised, but they should have more support to allow them to get to work safely.”

Picture: a photograph of the London skyline at night

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 23 September 2020


Related Articles

The Reputation of Security Officers “Must Be Addressed Urgently”

The perception of security officers as essential workers is ranked only “slightly ahead of traffic wardens”, according to a recent YouGov...

 Read Full Article
Security Officer Appreciation Week – #ThankYourSecurityOfficer

A security services provider is hosting a series of thank-you visits to their colleagues to mark Security Officer Appreciation Week. Corps Security, a security...

 Read Full Article
Face Masks – Are There Implications for Security Teams?

With mask-wearing becoming mandatory in certain public buildings in England, FM security teams may have to take additional precautions to face this challenge. Shops...

 Read Full Article
Over 1,500 Key Workers Took up Europcar Rentals During Lockdown

Critical workers such as NHS, fire and police staff, teachers, carers and volunteer responders rented vehicles during the height of Britain’s lockdown. Europcar...

 Read Full Article
Front-Of-House Strategies For Dealing With Aggressive Behaviour Post-Lockdown

It’s clear that the role of our front-of-house workforce and security staff is going to change significantly as buildings reopen. The security guard that greets...

 Read Full Article
SmartSec Solutions to Manage Site Security at the London Film School

The London Film School, one of the world's leading postgraduate film institutions based in Covent Garden, London, has appointed SmartSec Solutions to manage its...

 Read Full Article
Scrap the Clocks Change – RoSPA Calls for Permanent British Summer Time

Why do the clocks change each autumn? The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents is presenting evidence for ending the clock change, as British Summer Time comes...

 Read Full Article
Vending Machines – The Future of Post-COVID Catering?

The whole dynamic of workplace catering has been disrupted by COVID-19, so are vending machines the answer? Aside from the new logistical issues that face workplace...

 Read Full Article
78 Per Cent of People Feel There is a High Risk of Germs in Offices

Despite COVID secure guidelines for workplaces, three out of four people still feel there is a moderate to high risk of germs in an office building. A recent survey...

 Read Full Article
Surveillance Software to Monitor Home Workers Includes Screenshot Technology

Employers’ use of surveillance software, known as bossware, appears to be on the up, with off-the-shelf products able to track keystrokes, mouse movements and even...

 Read Full Article