After years of resistance, the venerable office slowly but surely begins its small revolution. Initially driven by the Silicon Valley start-ups and now followed by big names in the CAC 40, the major changes that are shaking our professional spaces are in the process of redefining the design we have of the workplace.
Smart Office, Office Flex, Desk sharing, Anglicism are not lacking to qualify these upheavals. Yet they have nothing buzzword and already change the lives of millions of employees…. and managers.
Indeed, if these concepts appear accessible on paper, their implementation within the company cannot be improvised. On the contrary, it requires planning and support that the manager must undertake with the utmost rigor.
The key: an improvement in the quality of life in the company, the creativity of collaborators and even the image of society!
Flexibility and quest for meaning: the new face of work
If you follow this blog regularly, you probably have not been able to miss the paradigm shift that has been affecting the world of work in recent years. From an era praising the open space and an impersonal and rigid organization of work, we are evolving towards an approach centered on the quality of life and the search for meaning.
These evolutions are not mere fads because they result from profound societal changes whose millennial is, involuntarily, the first witness. Often perceived as a more fragile and naive generation, Generation Y must actually deal with a labor market in tension, a lack of confidence of the banking and credit institutions for the realization of their projects and repeated crises, be it economic, political or environmental.
It is therefore not a surprise that youths from 18 to 38 years aspire to a work environment without brutality, that makes sense and that is in keeping with their lifestyles. This is mostly true for a generation that grew up with the Internet and adapted digital communication tools that would change everything: laptops and the smartphones.
The offices of Zynga
Hyper connected and mobile in essence, millennial draws (almost) involuntarily the professional landscape of tomorrow. Faced to a generation that does not understand why they will be unable to exercise their business at a distance while they have all the tools at their disposal to do so, the managers first responded by “teleworking”.
And this first change of posture would quickly engender a new one. Once the home office is democratized, what will happen then to the 40% of unoccupied workstations every day? To this financial problem, it was necessary to find a solution that would benefit everyone: the Flex Office.
Briefly, the Flex Office is the absence of an office in the workplace. Equipped with his computer, the employee settles every morning where he finds space. We invite you to browse our dedicated article to have an exhaustive definition of this concept.
The implementation of the Flex Office requiring the digitization of a major part of communications but also the storage of files and conferences, the desire to make the office a smarter place was quickly imposed. From this postulate is born the Smart Office.
Essential to the smooth running of any project and to the dynamisation of the teams, the managerial function is positioned from the outset as the cornerstone during a transition to new ways of working. Expected at each stage of the transition, the success of a move to the Flex Office, for example, will depend directly on its ability to anticipate and interact with the staff, but above all to question it.
The premises of Airbnb
Indeed, the first challenge faced by the manager aspiring to an organization in Flex Office is to break with traditions almost hundred years old! Management based on control and mistrust of the ability of the employee to be autonomous, it will be a question of opting for a so-called “benevolent” management which will see in the empowerment of the employees real opportunities to express themselves and to be more effective.
After this crucial first step, the manager will be in charge of supervising all phases of the transition:
Upstream: in order to define the scope of the project and ensure that it corresponds to the society, it will be up to him to review the needs of employees but also the culture and values brought by the company, on the standpoint of co-construction;
During the transition: he will be the guarantor of everyone’s equipment (individual lockers, computers and telephones, cloud storage, etc.), whether employees are present on the premises or teleworking. He will also be responsible for ensuring that employees are trained in new tools and technologies in order to limit frustration and especially the feeling of being left to oneself;
Downstream: finally, he will have to ensure the good cohesion of the teams by inviting them to collaborate as soon as possible. Likewise, he will have to create the feeling of belonging to the entire company (even teleworkers) by organizing regular team meetings and team building meetings.
Office Branding: new lever for the employer’s brand
If the adoption of new work modes allows a gain of obvious square meters, then the strengths of the Flex Office and the Smart Office do not stop here.
How can we doubt for a moment that a motivating framework can harm innovation and profitability? According to an Actineo / TNS study, 9 out of 10 employees say they are more productive and more creative when their workspace is properly set up.
A transition to new ways of working rigorously orchestrated should be an opportunity for the company to show its ability to listen and its ability to offer an experience to its employees. The goal? That they breathe the office and identify more with the values and culture of the organization to ultimately remain faithful to it in the long run.
Flex Office and Smart Office are therefore not mere makeover operations but real instruments of the employer’s brand. Especially if we consider the terrible “war of talent” in which GAFAs / major players in the tech and traditional societies are engaged. While 93% of Millennial disapproves the “classic” office and salary is no longer an unstoppable argument, the battle is now on the ground of QVT and flexibility.
This fight for attractiveness even has a name: Office Branding. Right from the Silicon Valley and popularized through third places, the Office Branding has no shortage of ideas to attract the most connected:
The Internet of Things which allows for example to improve the working environment (adequate temperature, healthier air, better management of light and sound etc.);
The creation of real “intelligent paths”, as proposed by Cowork.io , simplifying the management of spaces by the collaborators and allowing a better transmission of information;
But also sports coaches, the development of recreation rooms, the revegetation of spaces, the establishment of a conciergerie, etc.
The Branding Office naturally brings management functions to consider the office as a means of communication in its own right. A true mirror of the company and its dynamism, it also has an impact on the actors brought to transit within it (customers, prospects, suppliers) to whom it will be able to give a first “good impression” perhaps determining…
If the work 2.0 places a particular importance on the collective intelligence and the horizontalization of the hierarchy, its implementation always requires the experience and the vision of a modern managerial function trained to these problems. Far from the simple fad, Flex Office and Smart Office instead build the foundations of corporate wellbeing and enable organizations ready to go the extra mile in the race for innovation and recruitment.
https://cowork.io/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Marque-employeur.jpeg12681900Geoffrey Vionhttps://cowork.io/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/logo-coworkio.pngGeoffrey Vion2018-03-08 11:20:422018-07-03 10:02:38Work 2.0 : What are the Challenges for Management and the Employer’s brand?