What is the future of the digital office?

The rise of technology has been unstoppable in recent years. In just a few decades the computer has gone from being a massive room filled with huge machines whirring magnetic tape, to small devices which we can carry around in our pockets.

Future of Digital office

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1980 and beyond

Anyone who experienced the rise of the ‘Yuppie’ in Thatcher’s Britain of the ’80s will recall the huge portable telephones carried by up-and-coming young men in suits. Little did we realize back then that one day the technology would be so advanced that we would all carry mobile phones as a matter of course.

Back in the ’80s desktop computers had transformed the way offices did business. The typing pool had disappeared completely and workers did their own word-processing and primitive data analysis tasks.

Back then none of us dreamed of a world in which office workers could make use of Sharepoint mobile technology to synchronise calendars, access customer details and initiate follow-up protocols all from a single hand-held device.

Future trends

The touchscreen has been one of the most recent developments to have transformed the way we communicate and work. With new apps becoming available with every passing day, our mobile phones are becoming crucial to the way we travel, shop and interact with each other, making global communications a normal feature of our everyday lives. Smartphones take the place of telephones, diaries, notebooks and laptops, offering a huge range of services on demand.

Now technology is producing the flexible screen, offering opportunities to make portable devices easier to carry and transport whilst making them stronger and more durable. Anyone who has dropped their smartphone onto an unforgiving surface will understand the implications of a flexible and unbreakable screen.

Meanwhile there are developments in wearable technology with companies such as Google working on spectacles with a discreet screen feature, offering all of the benefits of mobile computing in an easily-accessible design.

Companies are already starting to understand the value of social media in promoting products and services and the continuing progress in mobile technology helps to facilitate this trend. New companies are springing up to analyze data on social media sites about the flow of information regarding companies and their perceived value to consumers. At the same time targeted advertising allows companies to ensure that the right audience get to see new products, ensuring a greater success rate when building up customer loyalty.

With such instant access to customers, colleagues and industry developments it is likely that the way in which we conduct business will subtly alter to accommodate the possibilities of this new technology. Home-working is likely to become more available as an option, with several companies working on developing dedicated workspaces to suit the home. Purpose-built pods feature all the benefits of an office yet take up minimal space in the garden, whilst cocoon chairs with built-in screens and sound systems allow for the user to occupy their own office space within the smallest of areas.

With smaller and more durable styles of touchscreen becoming available, soon we will all literally be carrying our work around in our pockets, changing the face of business completely.

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