The days when a quick glance was all you could get are over. At ORGATEC, it’s all about touching, trying and experiencing. The Inspired Hybrid Office special event will showcase successfully implemented new work solutions – not abstract visions of the future. Visitors will be able to experience and try out the working environments presented at first hand.
Over the last two years, our world of work has been going through a period of radical change. Global events have forced a change in what was previously the status quo. The way we work and where we work have changed forever. New working models have emerged and become established. Working from home is one example of an approach that used to be the exception, but is now suddenly part of everyday life. However, many companies would like their employees to come back to their old offices – at least part-time. But staff are now returning to their companies with a new set of experiences and different expectations.
So, where do we go from here?
On the one hand, this raises the question of how we can now revive aspects of working life that have been missed recently, such as face-to-face interaction with colleagues. And on the other hand, we need to find ways of taking all the things that have worked well and have added value to our teams, professionalising them and incorporating them into the new normal. Trade visitors to ORGATEC 2022 from 25 to 29 October will find answers to these questions at the special Inspired Hybrid Office event in Hall 8.
The special event is a natural follow-on to Inspired Collaboration, the special exhibition area at ORGATEC 2018, which showed how hybrid collaboration between people can work regardless of differences in space and time. Zgoll: GmbH was the partner for this original project and will also be the lead supporter of the new event at ORGATEC 2022.
The way into the new work routine
Inspired Hybrid Office aims to reveal routes into new ways of working. In particular, it will address questions such as how a safe return to the office can be organised and what opportunities and challenges face companies in their working environments. After all, the place where an employee works on a daily basis is no longer exclusively either the office or their home, but can instead be chosen by the employee on the basis of individual requirements and in the context of the task at hand.
Fewer desks – more dynamic workspaces
As a result of these developments, changes are needed with respect to technical equipment. For instance, in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, offices need far fewer desks but far more dynamic workspaces and meeting spaces – creative areas that are suitable for interactive, collaborative work. But in many companies, meeting rooms date from a time before COVID-19, when videoconferencing was often only available to executives. Today, however, employees at all levels have extensive experience of daily videoconferencing and home offices fitted out with professional equipment. And this raises expectations when staff return to their old workspaces. How can these expectations be met? How can companies create office environments with added value? Or, put another way: what can and must an office workplace offer its users in terms of added value when compared with a home office?
“Inspired Hybrid Office will offer answers to these timely questions through proven best-practice examples,” promises Michael Zgoll, Managing Director of Zgoll: GmbH, adding: “That’s the secret to the special event. Instead of presenting abstract visions of the future, we’ll show how, through carefully thought-out concepts for the use of space and technology, direct communication and creative collaboration can thrive even in new working environments by adapting existing spaces and combining the latest technology in intelligent ways.”
Here you can experience the New Work everyday life at first hand
In a space extending over more than 700 square meters, the special event will demonstrate what is already possible in terms of technology and workplace planning today: a working environment for new work, with an integrated, holistic concept comprising different work processes, practical and seamless transitions between working from home and working in the office, with dynamic floor plans and a combination of existing building technology with intelligent sensor systems. By making coherent use of collaboration and booking tools, such an inspired office will create a working environment in which every employee will find the right workspace to suit their precise tasks and requirements every day, be able to customise it with great ease, and maintain an inspired flow of ideas with colleagues wherever they happen to be. And at ORGATEC’S special Inspired Hybrid Office event, trade visitors can experience at first hand what everyday life would be like in this new world of work, because all the application models presented will be fully functional and could be rolled out in companies as they are or in a similar way in the near future.
But that alone is not enough to bring about a successful transformation, as Anton Michael Döschl, Director Sales Modern Workplace at Cisco Deutschland and one of the special event’s strong high-tech partners, knows: “The term new work is also specifically used to describe the structural change – i.e. the transformation of our world of work – caused by digitalisation and the changing needs and wants of the workforce. It’s a tough challenge for companies, and meeting it involves not only technical solutions, but also cultural change.”
Inspired Hybrid Office Stage invites to professional exchange and discussion
In addition to Cisco, further partner companies such as Samsung, Sony and Telekom will ensure that the Inspired Hybrid Office space meets state-of-the-art technical standards. But of course, it’s not always enough simply to see the final version of the solution. That’s why the Inspired Hybrid Office Stage will also provide insights into the theory behind the practical demonstration models.
This is where successful implementation strategies will be presented by contributors with first-hand experience, and where there will be opportunities to exchange ideas with the leading scientists and researchers behind the products. Attendees will be able to see for themselves how leading international companies have created hybrid working environments and with which partners and technologies, what has already proven successful and what challenges they have had to overcome. In short, audiences will be presented with successful strategies by people experts who have actually implemented them so that they will come away with important ideas for their own projects.
Cisco’s decision to participate in ORGATEC was also motivated by this combination of inspiring insights into new working environments, showcases of new materials, company presentations and opportunities for professional dialogue. “This is what makes ORGATEC 2022 the right platform for Cisco to introduce new approaches to potential customers and further develop established models,” says Anton Michael Döschl. He’s looking forward to speaking to trade visitors: “We would like to welcome you to our stand, which has never before offered so many creative ideas and incentives. Discover how we interpret the term ‘modern workplace’ and find out which concepts work. Come and be inspired by our ideas and by the passion of our valued partners.”
The programme on the Inspired Hybrid Office Stage will start at 11:00 a.m. on the first day of the trade fair with a keynote speech followed by a panel discussion on the subject of “Working in the new normal – the significance of AI and robotics in tomorrow’s world of work”. In the afternoon of the same day, another panel discussion will focus on how British architects and designers are tackling the challenge of making office design more sustainable. This discussion is being organised by the Women in Office Design (WOD) team, which coordinates the Sustainable Design Collective in the UK. It brings together over 20 representatives from leading UK and international firms of architects and designers, as well as property experts. The collective meets every two months and works as a think tank, promoting knowledge sharing and collaboration.
Further details about the programme will be published on the ORGATEC event website in the coming weeks.