Millennials have fully infiltrated the workforce and they’re changing it … for the better. Once seen as an entitled, overly coddled generation, employers have come to realize that in fact, this rising generation of workers and leaders is deeply committed, socially connected, and incredibly productive. Never before has a group of people been more inundated with technology throughout the entirety of their lives. As a result, they think differently and expect more.
Perhaps there is no more iconic picture of the modern office than of the wide open space, rows of desks arranged together, surrounded by fashionable Scandinavian furniture, hordes of millennials banging away at their keyboards wearing their high-end headphones. Large windows and all white everything keep the space light, airy, and up to the expected aesthetics of modern design. Maybe throw some plants in for good measure. While we’re at it, sprinkle in a couple well-behaved dogs, a work BFF, and a dozen flannel shirts and VOILA! You have the modern open office space.
As companies compete for the most talented employees, they have realized that it’s more important than ever for the physical office to reflect the modern culture of the company itself. That means the dreaded cubicle farm is a thing of the past. Companies are breaking down walls and opening doors in an attempt to foster conversation and creativity, enhance relationships, and promote transparency.
The modern workplace of today bears little resemblance to the modern workplace of 50 years ago. Just think about the mid-day booze-swilling, male-dominated, Mad Man-era office setting compared to today’s increasingly diverse, kombucha-sipping, dog-friendly open spaces. Some changes have evolved slowly like workplace diversity and others have cropped up seemingly overnight like gourmet coffee bars and company kick ball leagues.
We’ve written a lot about the environment of today’s modern workplace, but as you strive to keep your company attractive and competitive today, it’s critical to plan for what’s going to make it shine in the future. The last thing you want to do is invest in a full-scale office remodel, only to find what you consider modern today is outdated thinking five years from now. Making those predictions may seem like an exercise in futility which office worker in the 1970s would dream that ping-pong tables would replace conference room tables and cubicles would relegated to the depths of office hell? That’s why we’ve put together a guide for planning for the office of the future.
The standards of the modern office are shifting all the time. Gone are the days of cubicle farms and compartmentalized solitude. Gourmet coffee, cabinets of snacks, dogs in the office, and funky furniture fill newly designed open spaces. Large windows cast natural light throughout open rooms with rows of desks. Large spaces, open concepts, and room for collaboration are all the goals of the modern office.
An Activity-based workplace is an ever-changing environment
New and alternate approaches to workplaces are continually emerging. The latest growing trend is called Activity Based Working (ABW).
Activity Based Working aims to boost collaboration, productivity, and flexibility while reducing costs. It's a workplace strategy that provides people with a choice of settings for a variety of workplace activities. Rather than forcing individuals to undertake all their work at one setting, ABW allows people to physically locate themselves where it is most suitable for them to complete their job.