The Future of Work & the Impact of Technology

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Earlier this year, Area Sq, part of  Fourfront Group, and GCS Recruitment Specialists got together with 10 business leaders at the Kyocera HQ to discuss the future of work and the impact that technology continues to have on our sector.

Aki Stamatis, Chairman of Fourfront Group, summarises the key findings

Design a space that supports employees

‘The general consensus among the roundtable delegates was that it is essential to understand how a business functions before designing a space that can support employees. The 10 industry experts agreed that an organisation must first conduct research about the workforce, including how people use the space depending on their various activity portfolios. It’s then a case of being playful with a space and creating different zones that support a variety of individuals all undertaking an array of tasks.’

Encourage collaboration

‘A key requirement of tomorrow’s workforce, regardless of how the world of work is changing, is the opportunity for collaboration. From the roundtable’s collective experience, workers want a place to share learning, knowledge and ideas. Organisations, therefore, need to review how technology and flexible working impacts such collaborative pursuits.’

Create a sense of community

‘Striving for a sense of community can foster that all-important need for collaboration that, in turn, can boost productivity. This can be achieved through implementing a working model and designing a space that naturally brings people together. Creating a community at work also feeds into the overall culture of a business. A set of clear and undisputed values underpins any given culture and, to drive it forward, it’s important to make employees feel like they ‘belong’.’

Recognise the attitudinal shift

‘The concept of a ‘work / life balance’ has been replaced by the idea of a ‘work / life blend’ and the roundtable delegates believe technology has played a fundamental role in this attitudinal shift. Organisations need to recognise that the line between the personal and professional worlds is blurry; it is, therefore, necessary to offer flexibility in return for the constant and unwavering connection to work demands. The onus needs to be placed on establishing a working model and a workspace that encourages a healthy work / life blend.’

Facilitate the demands of the modern day workforce

‘From the roundtable’s collective experience, workers want and need the latest technology. This is particularly true of the younger generation – the Gen Zeds – now entering employment for the first time. Organisations also need to understand that the modern day worker expects a combination of the latest, most effective tech in addition to an element of flexibility. Embracing such offerings can help to both attract and retain talent.’

There’s no place like home

‘In order to tap into the potential of a workforce, business leaders need to make people feel ‘at home’ and relaxed. A flexible work environment tends to mean the people working are happier and more engaged – and this is what essentially improves productivity. Aside from the location, proximity to local transport links and onsite facilities, such as showers and breakaway areas, the panel were united in thinking that adopting a flexible approach to work, in addition to bringing domestic elements into the workspace, is key to attracting talent and to improving output.’