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Aurecon Malaysia

  • 1,000 - 50,000 employees

Are we the last generation to need an office by Aurecon Malaysia

Team Prosple

The Internet is the most powerful force behind making traditional work practices and ‘the office’ less relevant.

Bus rides, subway crowds, and coffee lines to go to work could all be a thing of the past thanks to high-speed connectivity and smart software. Much of this is currently taking place. What happens to the office as we know it if today's workforce pioneers 'bleisure,' a combination of business and leisure that irreversibly blurs the barriers between home and work life, and if that happens, what happens to the office as we know it?

According to a recent survey by Jones Lang LaSalle, staff desks are only used 60% of the time in most organisations, with the remaining 40% spent in collaboration areas or with clients. People don't even receive their own workstation in this atmosphere, while businesses gain because they need less office space.

This is compounded by the fact that millennials prefer not to spend their days at an office unless they have to. When it comes to balancing their personal and professional lives, the office setting may not be the best location to do it.

The future's 'office' may be your home, a coffee shop, a library, or a public park, and it could be required to serve as a touchdown location, a collaboration space, a place to build things, a gathering place, and more.

As this new model for work emerges, the technology driving this movement forward is becoming more powerful. Technology will soon make it entirely possible to enter the board room for a conference, face to face, with clients and colleagues from around the globe, while you’re still at home.

Virtual Reality (VR) goggles can readily provide this capability. The time, cost and stress of business travel will be eliminated. Artificial Intelligence (AI) could take care of most mundane tasks that don’t require emphatic thought processes. Emails will be automatically read and filtered, with only the most important ones being discussed with you.

What’s more, your AI device will provide details on each person you meet instantly, informing you of both their personal and professional information. In this world, you’ll have the capacity to be more collaborative and innovative than ever before, with the ability to ‘see’ what those in the physical world are doing and communicate with them whenever you need to, including ‘seeing’ what is happening on a project site or in your retail outlet and ‘popping in’ to take care of things without physically being there. You’ll print what you need to work by downloading a design from the cloud and using a 3D printer to manufacture it.

Within this scenario, innovating will be more important than ever before. If mundane tasks are taken care of, the challenge to all workers will be to find new ways to add additional value. This will place a greater demand on workers to create more value for customers.

Many blue-collar work settings have already been displaced and challenged by technology. It would be naive to believe that similar disruption will not occur in white-collar workplaces, especially when millennials seek this new balance.

If we are on the verge of another workplace revolution, it is critical that we consider the implications. Businesses must begin to consider how the way we work will change, as well as the implications for employees and the need to alter their resourcing strategy. The Uberization of the office workforce is literally on the horizon.