It seems that the pandemic not only in Germany but also in other countries is slowly normalizing and hopefully is coming to an end. There are several reasons to be hopeful: the number of cases is decreasing and more and more vaccinations are being carried out. So, all indications are that we can soon expect a transition to a new daily routine.
So after more than a year of working remotely, many people are asking themselves what will happen next and what model of work will prevail. Will the longing for socializing with people make us want to go back to the office every day? Probably not every day. But most are looking forward to working away from home a few times a week. So let's take a look at new work models in the (hopefully near) future!
Many people were able to critically question processes during the pandemic and come up with better ways of solving problems for a better restart of common public life. This is also true for the world of work: remote work has become standard and many people can pursue their profession outside the office – sometimes even better than before.
We have learned that ideas can also develop with asynchronous communication and that a short exchange with colleagues is much more pleasant and more sustainably productive than an hour-long meeting marathon. With the normalization of mobile working, many employees are better able to balance their work with family, friends, and other aspects of their lives because morning and evening commutes have been eliminated. Of course, many people would like to keep these advantages in their lives in the long run, but at the same time not give up working away from home completely.
Most people want to work in the office at least once a week, as they can have variety in working environments, meet their coworkers, and feel the ‘office spirit’. The so-called hybrid working model – mixing remote & office – gives employees lots of flexibility and freedom in their everyday lives. In addition, a company’s culture must be thought of in a way that takes into account all people in the organization and leads them to their full potential. The connection between employees should be stronger through shared values and goals than geographical separation.
This development also entails structural changes: laws should be adapted for uncomplicated opportunities for mobile working. In addition, to protect the environment, there is increasing discussion about an anti-commuting allowance so that long journeys from the country to the city are no longer necessary. Large companies, in particular, can reduce travel distances for employees by setting up small, decentralized offices, as they then no longer have to travel a long way to headquarters.
What does the future hold for offices?
Offices are transforming away from the workplace: the office is becoming a meeting place that promotes the exchange of ideas, stimulates creativity, and inspires workers. It is no longer a rigid space crammed with desks. Rather, it invites people to identify more strongly with their organization through added values such as ergonomic equipment or free catering.
However, that's not the only transformation. The modern office must also be flexible (in more ways than one): With the new remote working model, attachment to one's desk is becoming less and less important. Personal belongings can be conveniently stored in cabinets. In addition, rooms must be able to be rearranged at will, so that no space is left unused. Corporate offices are also looking more and more like coworking spaces or flex office spaces.
Climate protection also plays a role in the office; after all, buildings are among the biggest emitters of greenhouse gases. For a good environmental balance, resources such as water, electricity, and heat must be used efficiently. In addition, extensive greening in the rooms as well as on the roof can contribute to better sustainability. In addition, plants in the workplace contribute to increased productivity and quality of life for employees through improved air quality and their anti-stress effect.
The office of tomorrow
Offices are much more than spaces in which to work. With the right approach, they become vibrant environments where people meet, connect and share. To unleash the full – really big – potential, it makes sense to use digital building technology. Intelligent access controls make it possible to use rooms more flexibly, save on keys and their management, and enforce hygiene requirements more easily. The room atmosphere can be conveniently controlled via app and resource consumption-optimized at the same time. Furthermore, employees often feel comfortable and inspired by modern technology in their office.
How do the respective stakeholders benefit from digital building technology? We have tips for you here on how you can increase the satisfaction of different groups:
- Users have greater convenience through digital technology such as access control, room bookings, and lockers, as many processes are now faster and more convenient for them. In addition, many are attracted to smart building technology as it gives the building a fresh image.
- Facility managers especially benefit from the simplification of many processes. If all components are managed in one platform, they have a good overview of what is happening in the building and can react quickly in case of problems. By integrating a ticketing system for defects, repairs can also be coordinated more easily.
- The owner of the building benefits through savings in running costs: time savings for staff, no more costs for keys as well as their management, and increased building efficiency. In addition, a high level of user satisfaction ensures less fluctuation.