by March 1, 2012 0 comments

The times of a 9 to 5 work day, using access cards for attendance, sitting on one’s office desk all day, carrying around a bulky laptop and going out for a lunch break are soon getting extinct. Say Hello to the new improved workspaces we are transforming into.[image_library_tag 682/63682, border=”0″ align=”right” hspace=”4″ vspace=”4″ ,default]

Globalisation, mobility and competitive pressures have diminished the importance of traditional workspaces. Our workspaces now are in the process of a phenomenal transition. Workplace innovation is not just a matter of technology alone. Among the key issues are: workplace organisation, regulations, cross-organisational cooperation, management and leadership, business models and employee productivity. With employees being expected to be available 24X7 and greater demands on companies to evolve, new forms of collaboration, employee engagement and usage of information technology are emerging to make way for a virtual workspace that is putting the original office desk to rest.

Office on the cloud

Thanks to the explosion of technologies and processes of information technology our workspace is changing considerably. In the near future we will see the ‘network’ becoming the office, with people connecting virtually. We will see the efficiency, effectiveness and overall experience of workspace increasing with mobile workforce being supported by smart devices.

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With Cloud taking on a big part of how companies work, we will soon see a change in the IT Infrastructure for the office too. With the proliferation of mobile devices, employees may soon be seen bringing in their own device and the office network will have the capability to support these whether it is an iPad or a Nokia windows phone or any other device. This will allow employees to be always on: Always connected through their devices. We can expect to see less use for devices like printers, scanners etc. Similarly storage will move to the cloud ensuring a more collaborative workspace as well as a reduction in IT equipment costs.

Device shrinkages

Devices that will be used in office are also changing. In the future we will see more of all in ones – integrated desktops which will have the following features:

  • Lower Power Consumption
  • Sleeker,
  • Lesser Price
  • Multifunctional Single Gadgets or devices that allow mobility and ease of use

Roaming offices

Today more and more companies are focusing on being result oriented and rather than focusing on every employee clocking 9 hours of work. Evolved companies are now opening up their work culture to a ‘work from anywhere’ philosophy. This might sound like a good excuse to sleep late or catch a movie in the middle of the day but with regular conference and video calls to group and discuss work requirements, client calls and meetings and an outcome oriented approach, employees are more likely to deliver on expectations working from the comfort of their home offices.

This phenomenon has also resulted in a significant reduction real estate costs with office spaces shrinking. Most companies focusing on evolved workspaces will soon have office space to support only one-fourth of their employee base any given point of time.

Permanent work stations are vanishing and hot seats are becoming a reality. This not just reduces the capital cost of acquiring a large office space but also the regular bills incurred to manage a huge space.

Work environment of the future

Future workplace will see a more open office culture that helps employees manage personal and professional requirements, working when they are most productive to deliver results faster. Even the office space will start getting re-designed with more open-breakout areas, creative workspaces, informal meeting rooms to allow better exchange of ideas. Several studies reveal that companies with open office formats are more likely to have an engaged and productive work force as this contributes to the overall employee welfare objective.

Some of these features are beginning to show but these will become more common place in the near future. The future workplace will benefit the environment too as there will be less use of paper, lower power consumption and also lesser office space will be needed.

A workplace that has reduced costs, saves the environment, is more technology-enabled, flexible and employee friendly: Workspace 2015 will soon be a reality.

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