The workplace has to be a fluid entity. If it stays in a state of arrested development, it will soon be nudged out of the competition. The one thing that can give a leg-up to any office is future-proofing. So, what exactly is it? Future-proofing means upgrading the workspace in keeping with or in anticipation of the changes that are sweeping the industry. This way, the workplace is in a position to ride the wave, make the best of new opportunities and resources and remain viable in a fiercely competitive world.
This poses the question, are workplaces in India ready to embrace the future? Sadly, a majority of Indian firms are languishing in the past and are shambling along by making do with pre-historic technology. That does not imply that there are no instances of futuristic avant-garde workplaces in India. Multinational companies and tech giants are leading the way in future-proofing the workplace and everyone can take a cue from them. The changes that require to be ushered in may seem daunting but the rewards in terms of enhanced productivity, recruitment of brilliant minds and rich dividends will be worth it.
Let us look at how Indian workplaces can transform themselves –
1. Integration of technology
There are offices in India where files are stacked up into precarious towers with no sign of digitization insight. While digitizing the entirety of India’s workplaces will be a slow and ponderous procedure, we need to start soon. Technology has enforced a tectonic shift in how business is conducted. The world is switching to a digital economy, and offices are incorporating machine learning, automation, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, different forms of digital communication and Wi-Fi; the sky is the limit to how much a workplace can digitize itself.
Smart technology increases the efficiency and productivity of the workplace.
Research the market trends that are likely to be a driving force in the near future. Incorporating some of these trends keeps the workplace fluid and braced for any major change. For example, presenteeism and co-working are two trends that will be a rage in the near future and both have to potential to ratchet up your profits as well as keep employees happy and hearty.
3. Flexible schedules and fun workplaces
The workplace should not induce stress. Burnout is common among Indian employees. Not only is it devastating for their health, but productivity too takes a beating. So, make work hours flexible. Employees should have the option of working from home. Paid leaves and vacations and office picnics or outings are a great way to boost employee morale.
4. The design of the workplace
This is one avenue that workplaces really should focus on. A drab and dreary workplace crushes an employee’s soul. Don’t believe us? There is a research that has proved beyond contestation that a light, airy and cheerful design uplifts employees’ spirit and induces them to give their best.
So, how do you remodel the workplace to future-proof it?
- Improve the indoor air quality. Keep a few potted plants around as they can remove pollutants in the air. Besides, plants have a restorative power, and using them is an emerging trend in office design.
- Insulate your office from noise pollution.
- Make sure that the workplace is flooded with both natural and artificial lights.
Next, you can move on to-
- Make the office plush and comfortable which is a big draw for millennials and future generations.
- Incorporate bright colours, in the form of wall paint, carpets, workstations of different colours, coffee mugs, wall hangings etc. Let employees personalize their space to make the office even less stodgy.
- Consider making a window out of an entire wall with an excellent view of trees, another hot trend in workplace design.
- Make the office modular and scalable. This means planning every inch of the workplace so that it has a purpose but isn’t restricted to it. It can back up as something else. Like, the office’s common room can become the conference room if necessary. This also leaves room for an upgrade when the need arises.
Future-proofing the workplace is a strategy that will propel you to the front of the line, ahead of your competition. Indian firms need to understand this and get the ball rolling.