The modern day workforce are going through a gradual, but very noticeable transformation. Enabled by technology, changing attitudes towards flexibility, and surging numbers of millennials in the workplace, modern day professionals are redefining working life, and consequently challenging where and what a modern day workplace is.
Being able to read emails, access files and join meetings at any time, from anywhere, has been a game changer for working life. The fact that an employee can be constantly, virtually connected to their job is raising questions about the need for them to be physically present in a workplace, and what sort of spaces business owners should be providing for them to work in.
Do workers need a physical workplace?
One way that some business owners are responding to the declining requirement for their employees to be sat at a desk is to introduce ‘hot desking’; the concept where workers sit at any desk, as and when they need to come into the office. This then allows a business to reduce the amount of office space it occupies, and consequently save on property costs.
However, when considering ‘hot desks’, a business owner should consider the longer term impact that not having assigned desks can have on both the workforce and the business. By providing individual employees with a space of their own, business owners are encouraging them to spend time in the workplace and interact more with their colleagues. In taking that away, a business may lose its sense of community, and employees may lose the social interaction that a workplace can provide them with.
Rather than simply reducing space, a business owner can challenge the traditional concept of an office by introducing more flexible spaces within the workplace. By creating a range of working environments, employees can enjoy some flexibility in where they do their work, and be encouraged to collaborate with others in the workplace. Engaging work spaces can also help to motivate and inspire professionals, allowing them to be more innovative and better engaged in their work.
Location, location, location?
The property industry has long been driven by location, but with technology changing the way people work, as well as how businesses are run, physical location may become less of a defining factor for where a business owner chooses to locate their office.
With an increasing demand for flexible space, with better integrated, cutting edge technology capabilities, the impact of placing those factors above physical location, could be huge on the property market.