Are ‘agile branches’ the future as estate agencies cut high street costs?

Bidwells says all its branches are now fully 'agile' including a new site to be built in Cambridge as it embraces hot-desking, home-working and flexible hours.


The ‘hub’ approach to estate agency may have lost its lustre after Humberts went into administration yesterday, but sales and lettings agency Bidwells has had more success with its unusual approach to branches.

The company has revealed that it has now introduced ‘agile working’ across its multidisciplinary business including its rebuilt HQ (pictured, above) and re-purposed offices in Milton Keynes, Oxford, London, Norwich and Perth.

Last year the company refurbished its headquarters in Cambridge to create a new 21,000 sq ft facility which it described as an fully agile building. And it has now revealed plans to open a second agile site in Cambridge for its residential sales and lettings business.


‘Agile’ is management jargon that refers to buildings that have been designed in collaboration with employees and promotes concepts such as hot-desking, flexible hours and home working.

In Bidwells case, its new HQ included a larger and more enticing visitor area, eight conference rooms and a large open-plan, 140-seat café where clients can stay for lunch or coffee after meetings.

The HQ is for all the local clients and staff of its multi-disciplinary business including its rural, commercial, residential and new-build operations.

But the new site is to be exclusively for its estate agency business and has been given planning permission at a site in Trumpington, near Addenbrooke’s hospital to the south of Cambridge.

The new building will include a double height glass-fronted entrance where clients be greeted by a high-tech video wall and digital signage system playing high quality multi-media presentations of homes on offer from Bidwells.

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