Hi-tech offices to set the pace
SAY farewell to the dying desk plant, the photos of your loved ones and knick-knacks cluttering your desk.
Office workers soon may have no place to call their own.
Instead, they will wander the office floor talking on mobiles, reply to emails using tablets while sitting on couches, book a computer station for a two-hour block to draw up a report and attend meetings in which they can scroll through the presentation on a tablet at their own pace.
Global office furniture design firm Steelcase predicts this as the future of the workplace, with office furni- ture emerging as a key advantage employers will use to ensure their business is successful in a global marketplace.
Steelcase says to be successful across state and national borders, employers need to remove the physical barriers between their staff, such as work stations.
Steelcase Asia-Pacific president Uli Gwinner says the nature of business today means an interconnected workplace allows companies to compete internationally.
‘‘ In the past, we thought that going into the office meant sitting down on an office chair,’’ he says.
‘‘ In the future, we will have the choice whether to sit, stand or walk around.
‘‘ If we can choose which type of technology we want to use, whether we want to interact people to people or people to technology, it can help us keep contact with people who are outside your room or your country.
‘‘ These are the key choices companies should offer.’’
Gwinner believes new work arrangements can help staff think outside the square and grow the company’s bottom line as well as inspire people in their work and encourage them to stay with their company.
Super smart: Offices of the future will have communal areas with diverse technology.