It’s always best to be a little cautious when predicting the future; especially in the fluctuating and fast paced realm of technology where it seems every month disruptive solutions change the way we do business.
With many of our clients wanting their workspaces to be on the cusp of innovation; we’ve gained insight into where the offices of the future might be heading.
It’s not just the fear of being left behind that makes it crucial to be aware of these changes; increased productivity, improved communication with staff and your client base are but a few of the benefits from an effective tech strategy. With that in mind, here are 5 trends we think will achieve prominence in 2021.
From bringing your own device to bring your own app (BYOA)
In the last few years, we have seen how embracing personal devices enhances productivity and collaboration. We’ve witnessed businesses requesting these changes, with clients such as Square Enix implementing power and data modules on everything from benches to breakfast bars, making every space a touchdown point.
With millennials shaping the latest office design trends, it is inevitable that we see their influence over technology preferences in the workplace. Millennials’ working styles are all individual and customised. Having the ability to use their preferred apps at work provides a choice in how individuals work and collaborate. In 2021, offices will see an increase in people using own devices and apps at work to carry out tasks more efficiently. It is in the interest of businesses to design a workplace equipped to allow for this to occur naturally without any limitations to their performance.
The move of virtual reality headsets from gaming device to work tool began in 2014, around the time Google Cardboard demonstrated just how economical the hardware could get. We currently use a 3D headset in the office for space planning and it’s a great selling tool too – allowing clients a more immersive experience when walking around their space and evaluating their vision.
As the year progresses and the technology becomes readily available, this is going to become increasingly optimised for a wide range of utilities – from conference calls through to industrial design.
Workflow becomes truly agile
Workstyle innovation and modern technology has helped foster a workforce that can be just as productive outside of the office. With agile working becoming the norm in modern day working life, the office design needs to be able to keep up with what this entitles.
Companies need to provide fast and powerful connectivity for employees in and out of the office. Employees need to be provided with connectivity options that enable them to log in to the company networks remotely and easily.
While Artificial Intelligence (AI) such as Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Microsoft’s Cortana have been around for some time, we predict 2021 to see an increase in AI adoption within the workplace. AI provides us with the option to find information and carry out a range of tasks in a cost-efficient manner. This allows new opportunities for success where humans can primarily focus on the more demanding creative work tasks.
This phenomenon applies across all industries. For example, within the legal sector we have the creation of programs such as LawGeex, a contract review automation. It reads, stores and analyses legal contracts and then suggests edits based on the company’s pre-defined legal policies. The increasing innovation in automation not only reduces the chances for clerical errors but also accelerates workloads and processes to a large extent. We’ve noticed this change in the abundance of tech companies expanding, relocating and refurbishing throughout the UK.
2021 will see an increase in how people communicate and experience the workplace. Immersive technologies such as virtual reality, and mixed reality will continue to drive engagement, and change how people across all workplaces communicate and collaborate. It further adds to the experience of creating a real life scenarios which can be applied when thinking of your next office design. With the rising millennial influence within the workplace, this generation expects nothing less than to be able to collaborate in real time on design within a virtual framework.