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As we say goodbye to 2016, let’s break down the ways in which the workplace is changing in 2017. Over the past year, workplaces have evolved to accommodate a more fast-paced, mobile workforce. In 2017, perhaps more than ever before, companies will have to rethink the way they set up and use their workspaces. This is particularly true as the demand for a flexible work environment increases. The following are major trends that are likely to affect offices in 2017.
Freelancing and the gig economy have become major forces. More companies are hiring people on-demand to cut costs and solve key problems without resorting to a lengthy, traditional hiring process.
In this economy, full-time employees often work side-by-side with freelancers as part of what is known as a blended workforce. Freelancers team up with in-house staff to work on projects together. According to a study by Intuit, 40% of the workforce will be made up of freelancers by 2020.
2016 is the first year that Generation Z entered the workforce, but by 2017, Generation Z will have fully settled into the workplace. This new generation has a unique, technology-driven outlook on business. There will be a noticeable gap between the technology skills of younger and older workers. Along with Millennials, Generation Z will continue to pressure companies to transform their offices and embrace flexible and remote working.
Employees have become more health-conscious, and employers are realizing that workplace stress is one of the biggest health issues employees face. Healthy employees tend to be happier and more productive employees.
In order to attract top talent, companies will need to implement wellness programs that enable workers to lead a healthier lifestyle. Wellness benefits that an employer might offer include subsidized healthy lunches, a company gym, and fitness classes.
In modern offices, divided departments and cubicles are being eliminated in favor of shared, collaborative workspaces. These workspaces unite people from various departments under one roof, encouraging them to share ideas and solve problems together. Open office layouts encourage more interaction and facilitate collaboration. This leads to a stronger sense of community and enhanced problem solving.
There will be a decline in personal workspaces, as people spend less time in the office. Many employees now work remotely at least part of the time, so they don’t require a permanent desk. As a result, companies are doing away with fixed desks and instead using hot desking to give employees the freedom to work at different desks when they drop by the office.
Today’s employees seek a better work-life balance and flexible work schedule. Millennial business leaders are creating more flexible work environments to accommodate this trend, giving workers more control over their schedules and allowing them to get their jobs done anytime, anywhere.
With a growing number of employees working at home and more young people entering the workforce, office attire and workplace culture will become more casual. Employees are demanding that they be able to exchange the suits and ties for t-shirts and jeans.
Technology is rapidly evolving and will continue to feed into these modern workplace trends in 2017 and beyond. Let Add-On Products help you make your workplace more flexible, efficient, and productive with add-on solutions for Microsoft Outlook® and Exchange!