Workplace leaders have long tried to interpret how the effect of workspace design can have on productivity. Instead, organizations are now recognizing the importance of optimizing the workspace to accommodate to its end users. What type of trends will affect the future of workplaces? Changes in demographics, technology, and collaborative experiences are factors that will play a large role in transforming workplaces. These factors will influence workplaces to become more flexible and accommodating for employees.
Changes in Demographics
In 2025, it is predicted by Catalyst that Millennials will comprise three-quarters of the global workforce. The Generation Z population is also increasing and will likely surpass Millennials in 2030. This will cause major changes in the workplace as these two generations have different life priorities. They tend to be more accepting of occupational changes and less tied down to stability and long-term employment. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the US, there will be an increase of women in the labour force between 2014 to 2024 and men’s share will decrease during this period.
Since the Millennial generation values space for socializing as compared to other generations, the future of human-centric workspaces will be more collaborative and flexible. Designers and developers are leading to create a more holistic office environment that focuses on human aspects. They are looking into integrating social leisure and workspace together. This approach can help to increase productivity and allow for interaction to take place.
Technology will have a major impact on the workplace, providing sustainability and improvements to human preferences. High tech and green office spaces like The Edge in Amsterdam helps to reduce water and energy use of its users. The Edge uses 70% less electricity than similar office buildings. Occupancy, movement of light levels, humidity and temperate are tracked to maximize efficiency.
The Edge interior. Flickr/Ronald Tilleman
Aside from cost-effective and function-driven objectives, every organization needs to think thoroughly about how workplaces can attract and retain employees. Human-centric approaches will help future workplaces build a strong community focus, that helps to increase physical wellness and wellbeing of employees.
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