The Future of the Workplace

Cover Image for The Future of the Workplace
Chris Barcus
Chris Barcus
Last Updated:

COVID-19 has changed the way we work, maybe forever. Companies were forced, almost overnight, to transition their entire workforce from offices to working from home. Managers and team leaders navigated the sea of emerging technology to find the most effective tools for collaboration and productivity.

In the months since the initial lockdown orders, employees everywhere have proven they can stay on task without constant office supervision and that teams can continue to get things done without face to face meetings.

That said, the honeymoon phase of WFH is winding down. We miss our colleagues, our desks, and the weekly happy hours. But businesses contemplating a return to the office have to find solutions for things like desk arrangements, shared office snacks, and reduced office capacity.

These concerns and more are what have us asking two questions: Is a return to the office really worth it? And what does the future of the workplace look like?

Is a return to the office worth it?

The short answer? Yes and no.

Office space is important, but if there’s one thing Covid has taught us it’s that being in the office isn’t a prerequisite to being productive. In fact, many employees profess to being more productive working from home, a claim that is echoed by their KPI’s. We’re finding that working from home means less distractions and deeper focus. We’re getting our work done, developing new skills (bake-off anyone?), and spending more time with our loved ones.

New technology has allowed for effective team collaboration to continue throughout the pandemic despite team members working from different places and time zones.

So if our work is as good or better than it was pre-COVID, why go back to the office at all?

Well, because getting work done isn’t the only reason we go to work. Humans need interaction with other humans to stay alive. Nationwide lockdowns and increased social distancing have only added to our innate desire to be with other people. Colleagues miss the impromptu hallway conversations that spark innovation and strengthen inter-employee relationships. For a company, office space is a catalyst for culture building and innovation. Both of which are critical to a business’s survival.

What does the future of the workplace look like?

Perhaps the biggest change coming to the workplace is a shift from the perception of the ‘workplace’ being a singular location to being an ecosystem of locations and experiences to allow for flexibility without sacrificing culture and creativity.

The purpose of the office will no longer be to provide employees a place to work, but to give workers a place to connect, bond, and learn from each other all in an effort to strengthen company and team culture.

Expect companies to cut back on square footage wherever possible and institute limited daily capacity to ensure for proper social distancing. New technologies, like Tactic, allow leaders to limit the number of employees coming in to work each day and monitor the use of workstations and conference rooms.

Oh, and expect lots of hand sanitizer and Clorox wipes. Lots.

More Stories

Cover Image for Working From Home is Great, but Something is Missing

Working From Home is Great, but Something is Missing

With COVID-19 throwing our entire world (literally) for a very-much-unanticipated loop, all indications are showing that working from home is here to stay, at least in some form. Tech behemoths like Twitter, Square, and even Facebook have in recent months announced plans to allow employees to continue to work from home even after the Coronavirus pandemic is behind us.

Austin Hale
Austin Hale
Cover Image for Planning a Safe Return to the Office in 6 Steps

Planning a Safe Return to the Office in 6 Steps

We’re going on twelve months into a global pandemic, and for some of us, the desire to return to the office is getting stronger every day. It’s time to plan a safe return to the office. Let's talk about how to do it safely.

Rylee Williams
Rylee Williams