This is part of the “Future of Workplace Flexibility” series please refer to parts 1 and part 2 should you be interested in the future of Data and Power and Physical Environment.
Future of Workplace Flexibility: People
Today, in the increasingly knowledge-based industries. The ability for people to interact and exchange ideas is vital for business. In cultures where teams are located remotely facilitating such communication must happen. The flexibility of people working anywhere at any time will be a defining factor in the workplaces of the future. The time people spend together will be more focused on knowledge exchange and building relationships with colleagues.
The increased use of AI will contribute to this as process tasks become more automated with its introduction. With the help of AI, we will anticipate the needs of people in the working environment. Only using the assistance of humans when AI requires approval to complete its the task. The environments required for these interactions become less formal and more collegiate in appearance. The technology discussed is a facilitator of this type of environment as it allows more informal settings to be made available. Although the ergonomic issues related to mobile devices need to be considered and the solution needs to support the activity.
Future of Workplace Flexibility: Artificial Intelligence
It would be remiss not to mention AI further, although the future of AI and how it will affect people’s lives on a daily basis is a conversation on its own. AI is already in its most primitive form part of our lives in one way or another. Personal assistant applications and devices learn to anticipate our needs from the swathes of data we produce. As we produce more data these apps and devices will start to anticipate our needs to such an extent that we will come to rely on them in a symbiotic way (who knows a phone number off the top of their head anymore?) that will become the norm.
AI in the future
AI is on a current trajectory that will mean it will be an inevitable part of our lives and interact with us to a level where it becomes indistinguishable from human interaction. The form these AI computers will take is still up for debate. But it is almost inevitable that it will at least be through some sort of ‘wearable’ tech. This will allow interaction to feel more natural and it will become conversational-like in its nature. Rather than the awkward transference of ‘data’ that we have with machines today. These types of conversations will easily incorporate AI into collegiate interactions. Making the office environment fully immersive and connected for the users. For example, Elon Musk plans ‘Neuralink‘ to enhance the brain with technology that could then interface with the digital world.
Work will then be able to take place anywhere and at any time. Such adaptation will create a truly flexible working environment.
All of this will enable us to have a lot more leisure time…..hopefully.
This is, of course, a short summary and a personal one. But I hope it has made you think about the future of workplace flexibility. Please feel free to leave a comment on the article or any thoughts you might have. Also: don’t forget to share!