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21st Century Office Design – Collaboration and Technology

14 June 2015

The workplaces of the 21st century bear little resemblance to those of days gone by. ‘Collaboration’ has gone from buzzword a decade ago to now being the first word spoken in any office design discussion, having a significant impact on the look and function of the workplace.

collaboration and technology

The desire for these collaborative workplaces has not only impacted those using the spaces on a day to day basis, but also the architects and designers looking to stay at the forefront of office design. As partitions have been torn down and cubicles made way for open plan design, the roles of technology, and the designers understanding of it is crucial to a successful implementation.

Technology advancements are helping to take collaboration to the next level, encouraging innovation, camaraderie and increased productivity amongst workers. Here are three new technologies changing the ways offices will be designed:

High-definition video conferencing spaces – As working remotely and BYOD becomes more commonplace, video conferencing becomes an increasingly integral part of daily operations. Gone are the days of employees huddled over a speaker phone. High-def video calls allow for face to face meetings with colleagues and clients. Video allows for far greater and more effective collaboration, allowing you to see facial expressions and body language that are lost with basic telephone calls.

Interactive presentation settings – Stunning interactive presentations are changing the way information is conveyed between staff. The use of multi-touch screens or presentation software that can be interacted with through mobile devices allows ideas to evolve throughout the presentations, and eliminates the days of dry, linear presentations.

Fully integrated furniture – ‘Hot desking’, the trend where employees choose from a selection of available work sites rather than having an assigned workspace, is something that has been steadily gaining in popularity for the better part of a decade. The collaborative benefits of this type of work are being taken to the next level with the development of fully integrated furniture. Interactive desks (essentially giant tablets), and interactive whiteboards which can connect wirelessly to employees mobile devices can be used to promote levels of interaction and collaboration amongst workers not seen before.

For those involved in the design of these spaces, the inclusion of these elements brings about new challenges. Creating a digital workspace requires buy-in not only from the C-suite, but must ensure the IT department, who will be impacted through the ongoing upkeep of these elements, are also on-board.

Programmed Electrical Technologies is a leading provider in the design and installation of technology solutions in Australian workplaces. Programmed Electrical Technologies can assist architects and designers in creating high tech, collaborative office spaces.

Programmed Electrical Technologies can help every step of the way, from  design, engineering, project management, supply, installation, through to technical help desk support and service level agreements. Click here to find out more

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