Office 3.0 – The Cabling Company look at building the workspace of the future

Promotional Business Feature: The Cabling Company

Recent years haven’t been kind to our offices. Creating a shift greater than the industrial revolution, COVID-19 has turned our work culture upside down, changing corporate philosophy forever – But what does this mean for ‘The new normal’?

David Jackson (CNIDP CTPM) Managing Director of The Cabling Company based in Witney looks at the future of the office.

🔹 What defines the office?

According to the dictionary, it’s “A room, set of rooms, or building used as a place for commercial, professional, or bureaucratic work.” But in today’s climate, the office needs an update as much as the definition.

Employers were previously required to provide spaces to work and just that. But after the biggest cultural shift of our lifetime, these spaces received criticism for their inability to acclimate to our post-pandemic economy.

They now need to accommodate new operational and environmental demands if they aim to achieve a successful return to the workplace.

🔹 Does it have a future?

COVID-19 remains a disruptive force for businesses, as many are making permanent changes to workspaces to keep their people safe, healthy, and happy.

But although ‘WFM’ is still in full effect, the office is far from over. It’s no longer a case of staying at home or working from the office; both form an admissible hybrid, forming a new work culture that is both facilitated and fuelled by technology and IoT.

Over the years, we have developed a passion for providing smarter fit-outs and maximising clients’ real-estate footprints. We create long term relationships with businesses to align our solutions with their work culture because we believe a business’ office should drive mutual benefits for owners and employees.

From increasing sustainability to nurturing team synergy, we encountered 5 main factors our customers prioritised when future-proofing their offices…

 🔹 Flexible working

The pandemic increased demand for video conferencing and remote working, which has continued to renew its popularity. Some businesses have stayed ahead of the curve by linking HQs to remote workers; maintaining connectivity without compromise through bespoke, business-wide audio-visual solutions.

Facilitating seamless connectivity allows the business to act as one, despite logistical factors. However, most are realising their current infrastructure can no longer cope with the challenges created by rapid upscaling.

What does this mean? Connectivity will be the key to the future of flexible working.

Cloud applications and bandwidth-hungry devices demand the best from their network, and simple plug and play solutions won’t suffice for even the smallest of infrastructures. The remedy is a network that evolves with the needs and demands of a growing business to ensure reliability now and in the future.

🔹 Your brand speaks volumes

Providing seamless UX and fostering relationships is an equally important part of cultivating social capital. Building a healthy relationship between your business and key external stakeholders is essential for future growth, and the best way to capitalise on this is to ensure your fit-out embodies your culture.

Meeting suites host the initial insight into your business, and there are no second chances for creating a good first impression. Consider how your efforts to stay ahead of the digital curve are perceived by your clients, and how this impacts the value of partnering with your business. You need to embrace change if you want to remain competitive.

 🔹 Fluid Workspaces

copernico–8DAN9_oi8g-unsplashAs well as clients, the office needs to entice employees back and encourage productive work cultures to pass on to new employees. While this factor of social capital is heavily determined by relationships, your physical environment plays a strong role in its development.

Layouts should be designed with the aim of ‘de-densifying’ space and eliminating technical ‘bumps’ like coverage black spots, removing the tethers that previously bound us to static desks and adopting flexibility in-house helps facilitate the fluidity needed for greater organic productivity.

🔹 Leveraging social capital

Social capital is an invaluable commodity for maintaining a high performing workforce, and designing your office around this demonstrates your prioritisation of employee wellbeing. After all, the purpose of the office isn’t solely to facilitate productivity, but to also forge teamwork.

Team synergy has never been so critical and should be adopted in your design by bringing colleagues closer through more inclusive work opportunities and physically establishing the boundaries of a healthy work/life balance.

🔹 Sustainability

As well as investing in your team, sustainability should be a long-term goal for any forward-thinking business. Your designs should incorporate smart building initiatives- not only as a response to the pandemic, but also as part of an ongoing long-term strategy.

Sustainability comes with efficiencies, which drive cost savings and with that, the possibility for reinvestment and translation into direct stakeholder benefits.

However, current legacy systems are quickly becoming the main burden for evolving businesses, as they’re incapable of meeting demand and risk significant operational downtime. To achieve savings in power and space, datacentre design is being influenced by the need for long term economical sustainability.

🔹 Key Takeaways

It may seem daunting to overhaul a system that has been unchanged for decades, but times are changed and show no signs of slowing down.

Regardless of size or sector, businesses are run by people, for people and the new workplace should reflect that. Made easier by the incorporation of IT solutions, applications are now able to work with people and not just for them.

For us, the office is the physical heart, soul, and nervous system of a business. When you remove it, what is left to help grow your company culture?

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