The world of work is changing — and the change is big!  We are experiencing nothing short of a once-in-a-lifetime shift in how, when, and where work gets done. We are creating a new age of employment: the Digital Work Place. This workspace change is being fuelled by a mash up of trends, technology, socioeconomics and lifestyle that is creating new workplace and work style preferences.

"This workspace change is being fuelled by a mash up of trends, technology, socioeconomics and lifestyle that is creating new workplace and work style preferences."

Workplace technology

Technology has caused this main shift, opening the door for workers to be highly mobile, yet uniquely connected.  Smart devices and cloud technology are just two of the major breakthroughs that have given everyone the ability share information easily and stay connected.    

The nature of work today is changing as companies struggle to define the right mix of workspaces for this increasingly mobile and connected work force. Workers on the go are increasingly choosing workspaces outside the company office to get things done.

"The nature of work today is changing as companies struggle to define the right mix of workspaces for this increasingly mobile and connected work force."

Different work styles

A very relevant socioeconomic factor in workspace today is the multi-generational workforce.  For the first time in history, we have at least four generations of workers all with different styles of working, needs and technology acceptance.   We have three types of workers when applied to technology usage:  digital dinosaurs (unaccepting and ill-prepared), digital immigrants (willing to learn but struggling with digital  concepts) and digital natives (operating intuitively in a digital world.)

Workspace providers, such as business centres and co-working spaces, are finding they are not anything close to being “landlords.”  They are curators of conversations and networking, community builders, mentors, educators, technology experts, event and meeting planners and key financial success partners with their clients.  These are the abstract components of providing serviced office space that are becoming increasingly important to those looking for a space to conduct business.  

Business centres are responding with flexible options, collaborative communities, virtual offices and cost-effective pricing.  Workspace providers are catering to the physical, as well as human needs of their clients and members by providing tailored floor plans and furniture design options. Getting it right means designing a combination of open spaces, which foster collaboration and creativity.

"For the first time in history, we have at least four generations of workers all with different styles of working, needs and technology acceptance."

Looking ahead

As we look to the future, we know that corporate offices will continue to exist (although footprints will be smaller), on-demand workspace at a business centre will be in high demand and touchdown spaces like coffee shops and hotel lobbies will be coveted as well.  

Put simply: there are many, many different workspace options that will be desired and considered. The smart company or professional will know how to use each space solution when that work style is the best option at that particular time. Smart companies will combine first (home offices), second (corporate traditional offices) and third places (everywhere else) giving workers options to work anywhere.