As the millennial generation gets older, they are taking up a considerable amount of the workforce and, as this happens, the times – they are a-changing. Advances in technology are making people more accessible around-the-clock, expanding the average workday. In return, workplaces are creating homier atmospheres with more recreational opportunities; a shift from a work-life-balance to work-life-integration. How is this changing the traditional office space and working environment?
Millennials Seek Fun in the Workplace
To lighten up the workplace, employees are given more resources for fun and fitness. For instance, it’s not unusual to see basketball hoops in workplace parking lots and ping pong tables in break rooms. Not only does this give next generation workers a chance to get some much needed recreation, it’s also said to improve the work atmosphere and making businesses more innovative.
Companies are adapting more of a ‘everyone is created equal’ policy – or a horizontal hierarchy in the workplace. Those that try to run their business in a more democratic sense will focus on two way communication so that even their junior level employees are included in the company’s strategic planning. One company that is known for being innovative in this sense is the Acuity insurance firm who is known for having benefited from this elevated level of communication.
Telecommunication & Working Remotely is Becoming More Popular
Because employees are more accessible round the clock, working from home or working remotely is becoming a more common alternative for many companies. This can be a cost efficient solution as employees save money on transportation expenses while companies save money on renting office space. When office space does become necessary, it can be rented on a temporary basis for a private or co-working situation.
More Open Office Spaces
Traditional office spaces are also changing as cubicles are becoming a thing of the past, replaced with open spaces that encourage communication.
Here again, we can examine co-working, or shared office spaces, where not only are workers in a more open atmosphere with employees from their company, they may also be sharing space with workers from other companies. Although some complain of a lack of privacy in these situations, they can also be a money saving solution for many businesses and give work at home business owners an opportunity to get out of the house and network.
Millennials may be the first generation to integrate into the workplace never having known a life outside of the internet. While older generations may struggle to get used to new ways of doing things, those who embrace it may find there are a number of benefits that can provide cost effective solutions and a more productive, innovative way of getting through our workdays. It will be interesting to see the changes that are being made as technology continues to evolve.