The British Council of Offices held its annual conference last week. One key theme of the series of meetings was the changing landscape of the purposes of office space. London 2010, the title of the conference, recognised the increasing problems that mobile technology is posing to the traditional office.
Easy email and internet access, and ever-smaller technology from laptop computers and net books to Blackberries and smart phones, are rendering communication equipment more and more portable and physical offices less and less relevant. Coupled with the recession, which saw a surge in both serviced office users and home-workers, companies are wondering about rethinking their approach to fixed premises.
However, the conference also identified that the primary purpose of office space is to encourage interactions between staff. Despite its advantages, technology holds intrinsic problems by mediating communication. In that respect, there is no substitute for the traditional face-to-face meeting.
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