Desjardins's real estate portfolio could be reduced

Desjardins's real estate portfolio could be reduced

Due to the increase in teleworking, Desjardins Group will reassess the relevance of all of its real estate portfolio over the coming months. A “think tank” has been set up.

The cooperative has already announced to the majority of its workers that they will not return to the office until January 2021. Currently, around 80% of the 47,800 employees work from home.

Recently, the CEO, Guy Cormier, indicated on the program Mêlez-vous de vos affaires at QUB radio that he had set up a committee that will look at the future of real estate assets and leased spaces, such as the headquarters social in Lévis, the Complexe Desjardins and the offices in the tower of the Olympic Stadium.

“I am deeply convinced that the organization of work will change after COVID-19. We have not made investments of this magnitude without wanting to learn, ”said the big boss.

Mr. Cormier is working on the possibility of a “hybrid model”, ie a sharing of days between home and office. “Are we going to return to normalcy as before COVID-19? Me, I do not believe it, “he slices.

The think tank will analyze four areas, namely teleworking, the use of square footage, digital transformation and telemedicine.

The cooperative hopes to have the conclusions by the end of the year.

Desjardins did not want to reveal to the Journal the value of the real estate assets that will be analyzed by this committee. This reflection will not affect the caisses.

The future of checkouts

The future of the points of service will be further evaluated by the CAs of each establishment. Desjardins says, however, it is still too early to know the number of points of service that may never reopen.

“The transformation of service centers is always guided by the use of members,” says spokesperson Jean-Benoît Turcotti. “It will take some time to get a global picture,” he continues.

Currently, 87 service points are still closed in Quebec and Ontario “for various reasons”, including those unable to respect distancing measures, out of a total of 861. At the end of 2019, there were 872.

– With the collaboration of Yves Daoust

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