The office as we know it developed in the 19th century as the best way to harness emerging commercial behaviours and meet contemporary needs. Despite enormous external changes, its basic structure has changed little since. If a Victorian manager were transported into today’s office environment, although the technology might surprise him, the layout and practices probably would not.

But this traditional environment, where a set number of salaried employees work 9-5 in fixed silos, is starting to feel increasingly at odds with the contemporary world. External technological, economic and social trends have changed employees’ attitudes towards and expectations of the workplace.

This has implications for business owners. To make the best use of their employees moving forward, and avoid workplace frustrations, many companies will need to invest in major organisational change. However, these trends also offer opportunities to create more efficient ways of working.

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Do you agree that these five trends are driving the demand for new working practices? What do you think we'll be seeing in the future of work? Leave your comments below.

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