10 Jun 2020

AMP to quit Auckland and Wellington offices

1:50 pm on 10 June 2020

AMP Wealth Management will go ahead with its plan to quit offices in central Auckland and Wellington because most staff want to work from home and the lockdown proved it worked, the company says.

AMP is an Australian financial services company. This is its office in Melbourne.

AMP's logo on one of its Australian offices. Photo: 123rf

Of the company's 350 employees, 70 percent of the workforce wanted a mix of working at home and in the city, 22 percent preferred working from home, and 8 percent wanted to work at the office.

The company has been working on the plan to close the offices and set up smaller premises outside the city centres for two years.

During the lockdown productivity and performance stayed the same or was better when staff worked from home, the company said.

It will leave two-and-a-half levels at its building in central Auckland and one level in Wellington.

Chief executive Blair Vernon said working environments need to become more flexible but not every business would want to close central city offices.

"We don't think everyone is going to exit the CBD, clearly for many businesses it works.''

The company's move will have an impact on the CBD, he said.

For his company the cost savings will be minimal in the early years.

''In the next couple of years we don't expect to deliver any significant value. Obviously we have certain obligations to continue to meet.

"We have to work with our landlord and any tenants who might want to take over our leases, so it's not going to deliver us a cost saving near term.

''We think the critical thing is to actually meet the requirements and needs of our people because that is where our competitive advantage is and if we can have a happier and more engaged workforce who are as productive then that is a success for us.''

Vernon said smaller premises will be set up outside the city centres to allow for meetings and for those unable to work from home.