Are you actively engaged in your job? If the answer is yes, then congratulations, you are among the lucky minority. 

In a workwide research studey by Gallup, only 13 per cent of all employees are involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their jobs.

Employee engagement has become an increasing concern for many organisations, as a disengaged workforce often translates into diminishing profitability, lower productivitiy and higher turnover.

Workforce Diversity Today

In the past, workforce diversity usually refers to cultural, racial and gender differences. The definition today, however, also extends to generational differences. 

We are now in the quad-generational age, where traditionalists, baby boomers, Generation X and millennials work together in the same environment.

With the significant differences in outlook, value sets and work styles that each generation brings, the traditional one-size-fits-all people approach to the workplace is no longer able to accomodate the needs of the workforce.

In particular, millennials have influenced a shift in perspective from desiring work-life balance to work-life integration. 

The millennial workplace emphasises a sense of community, dialogue, flexibility, collaboration and entrepreneurship. As a result, creative workspaces originating from creative, alternative and entrepreneurial industries have become increasingly popular among other industries.

Flexibility

With work-life integration increasingly becoming a new norm, employees have to blend what they do personally and professionally in order to make both work. 

Enabled by recent advances in mobile technology, hot desking and flexible workspaces are fast becoming popular as employees become more mobile and appreciate more flexible work hours. 

Collaboration

Workspace design can make bold statements about a company's culture. A workspace that is designed to be a collaborative work environment should be planned with personal interaction in mind, encouraging incidental interaction between different levels of staff as corporate hierarchies become flatter.

Dedicated collaboration rooms are usually hard to justify in traditional high-rental office contexts. However, flexible collaboration spaces that serve multiple functions can help to encourage more dialogue without sacrificing space.

Work-life Integration

While larger corporations may find it easier to integrate more communal and social spaces into their workspace designs where employees can meet and interact, smaller businesses often find it more difficult to do so within their limited office spaces. 

There is increasing interest to develop urban environments which extend the millennial workplace concept from the office into the city. 

In this way, startups or small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) can use shared facilities and other existing urban amenities to extend their ability to offer better work-life integration to their employees. 

The recent evolution of workspace design reflects a shift in perspective in the workforce, largely influenced by millennials.

As organisations and businesses increasingly adopt practices to encourage better work-life integration to meet the needs of their workforce, we will see more millennial workspace concepts in the future. 

Let the workspace become a new source of motivation at work.

Article by Chan Hui Min, director, DP Architects.