The Society of British Interior Designers has reported a sharp increase in office refurbishment as companies seek to soften their space with open-plan areas, comfortable seats, living-room style offices and other homely touches. It appears that many London office space managers are enlisting the help of interior designers in the hope of attracting home-workers back to their colleagues.
Trends in flexible working have changed markedly over recent years. Technological advances such as high-speed broadband, mobile connections, video-conferencing and other innovations that would have been unthinkable a generation ago have transformed work habits. As a result, working from home – either part-time or full-time – is growing in popularity, and companies’ efforts to cut overheads in the recession only strengthened the tendency.
Unfortunately, there is no substitute for face-to-face meetings, no matter how good the technology, and home-workers often report feeling left out of the loop and the last to hear important news such as job vacancies.
Image: Flickr (Lars Ploughmann)