The Agile Workplace Blog

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These days, the 'new workplace' is one where employees are asked to embrace new technology, get comfortable with unfamiliar telework practices and even give up their dedicated desk. While all these changes are ultimately beneficial to all parties involved, it's important to have a communication strategy in place that effectively helps workers understand the need for such changes and the value they receive in return.

Hoteling has become so popular with business and government that media like The New York Times have finally recognized this space-saving and people-pleasing technique as newsworthy. Hooray for hoteling and high-fives to the leaders at GSA, who are using AgilQuest’s OnBoard technology to make it easy!

The mobile workforce is rapidly expanding. More and more organizations are viewing flexibility, or flexi-work practices as a strategy, not as a perk. The market intelligence firm IDC estimates that worldwide mobile worker population will increase from just over 1 billion in 2010 to more than 1.3 billion by 2015. It is clear that the trend toward creating a more mobile workforce is here to stay, and in fact -- and is growing exponentially.

Implementing new technologies to increase workplace mobility, such as telework or hoteling programs, constitutes a major cultural shift in any organization. Getting buy-in from management and employees can be a challenge, especially when dealing with worries about learning how to use these new technologies.

How much office space do we really need? As the workforce is working less and less from the office, and entering the Sharing Economy by working in 3rd party or co-working spaces, it's becoming a common question.

The notion of the "sharing economy" is a hot topic that often refers to a market where it is easier and often more efficient to gain access to a needed resources like cars, rooms and bikes, than to own them. However, the term can also be applied to the sharing of office resources such as desks, conference rooms, parking spaces and the like.

If you didn't have to come in to your office every day, but only sometimes, what would you want it to feel like? As employees become more mobile and telework more often, the "workplace" takes on a new role and a new form.

You know that efficiencies save money, but did you also know they can turn office buildings into both an economical and sustainable place where employees will love to work. Smart buildings are all about improving efficiency by eliminating redundancies, using less energy and automating systems This frees up office space and resources, which help make employees more productive.

In a push to reduce federal agencies' impact on the government and improve sustainability, the President ordered all government workplaces reduce their energy levels 28% by 2020. The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) has proved to be a leading example for this task, by making their old, inefficient buildings, which used a great deal of energy, greener and smarter.

The mandate for government agencies to create a more mobile workforce has led to the implementation of new technology to manage these changes efficiently and carry out cost-effective and sustainable solutions. The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) is a great example of how resource reservation software is helping government agencies to meet the President's goal of reducing the Federal Government's carbon footprint and reduce the amount of real estate.

Heard once again at this month's Mobile Work Exchange Telework Town Hall, getting buy-in from management and employees is the largest challenge for new mobility and hoteling programs in both public and private sectors. So how do you overcome normal human fear of change to embrace mobility, telework, or hoteling programs?

What does your office space say about your corporate culture and strategy? Does it embrace flexibility to attract and retain today's talent? Or is it more traditional?

These are questions being asked with alternative officing on the rise. For many, the new goal for workspaces is to have a dynamic flexible space defined by the people who occupy the space, rather than the other way around. Having a fixed space to personalize with family photos and potted plants is less important to today's employees than a workplace that supports flexibility and changing business needs.

We have all participated in routine fire drills where everyone is made to leave the office building and go stand in a deemed 'safe zone'. Then the head count begins. But what if some colleagues aren't there because they are at a client, or if they were out sick? The safety officer is left scrambling.

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