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Some of us started our working lives fitting into how the company needed us to be. Those entering the workforce today might never experience that need. Companies are adapting to treat employees as individuals. And it’s working.

Employees who have more freedom to decide how and where they work are more productive. Technology is certainly a big part of that, something employees acknowledge. Over 75% of employees feel that technology has had a significant influence on the way they work in the past year.

That acknowledgment in turn affects their decisions about whom they will work for. The quality of available technology would influence 80 percent of younger employees making a decision to take a new job. If you want the best talent, you need to offer the best technology.

Activity-based work

Instead of being chained to the same desk all day, activity-based work means working:

  • Where it makes sense to work
  • On the device that makes sense for the task

That might be in a flexible office environment or working outside the office.

There was a trend for a while to an entirely mobile workforce. The watchword today is balance. “Mobile” for some employees on some projects might just mean they can work anywhere in the office.

Multiple devices

The search for the single device that does everything for everyone is over, for now at least. Just as workmen never replaced their toolboxes with multitools, so office workers have a toolkit of mobiles, tablets, laptops and computers. It is all about what fits the job at hand.

Thin clients and virtual desktops

Like the all-mobile workforce, thin clients and virtual desktops were a hot trend for a while then faded. But the trend is back and growing annually by around 10 percent.

They are not something users are used to from home, but they have attractive qualities for corporate IT, especially when it comes to security.

Thin lines fade further

The line between personal time and work time is further eroded by mobile technology. And it is working for employers and employees because both sides are shifting their expectations towards greater flexibility. It is all dependent on the right technology, however.

What’s next? No surprises

When asked about future trends in technology in the workplace, the expert consensus is that there will be more video conferencing, more mobility and greater use of touch devices.