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The future of work: A day in the life

What does a day in the workplace of today look like? Let's go on a journey into how design and technology support the daily work/life of a 2018 worker, Emma.

The new workplace blurs the boundaries between work and life. It’s a hive of ‘always-on’ energy that creates personalised, delightful experiences for employees, customers and visitors alike. From frictionless technology that ‘knows you’ to enhanced flexibility, right through to a refreshing focus on wellness, the new workplace supports the many ways we need (and want) to work in 2018 and beyond. Here's a glimpse into Emma's day:


Setting off from her conveniently-located city fringe apartment, Emma rides her bike to work to squeeze in some exercise. As she gets closer to her building, the network welcomes her in seamlessly. To freshen up she uses the shower and change facilities upon arrival. Forgoing the need for swipe cards, she scans through security via facial recognition for quick and simple access and is directed to a locker to use for the day.


As Emma's leaving, the barista is notified of her presence and choice of coffee… which is ready and waiting upstairs as she swings by the lobby café.


Emma’s smartphone notifies her that a meeting is coming up and she should head up to room 804 on Level 8 (which the virtual app ‘wayfinds’ her to). Upon approach, the meeting room detects her unique ID and powers up. It welcomes Emma on entry and seamlessly connects everything she needs for her meeting – VC, projector, cloud based documents, desktop display, ideal climate and even the digital espresso maker kicks into gear.


Emma realises she’s misplaced her laptop… a quick request through her smartphone activates a beacon directing her to the location where she left it on Level 8.


Everyone in Emma’s office is agile working - they shift around the nine floors of their workplace seamlessly, finding the right space to suit the task they’re undertaking at any given time. Emma asks her smartphone ‘wayfind app’ to find Jeremy so they can catch-up on a project – she locates him in the Level 2 Innovation Hub where he's networking and analysing latest data assisted by the virtual assistant. They both share the latest version of the research paper they’ve been working on earlier in the week and amalgamate to edit on the touch screen. They also remotely connect with Ian internationally who assists in real-time.


Emma and Jeremy join the rest of their team in the Social / Community Hub to enjoy lunch in the sunshine and use the external Wi-Fi to review the data assessed earlier – they pay for their meal using a mobile app.


Emma needs to do some quiet focus work so, empowered by the destination of choice her agile workplace offers, she heads to the Level 3 Quiet Zone for the afternoon where she can concentrate knowing she won’t be disturbed. Use of the space has been supported by change management and everyone understands that their phones must be on silent when working there. If she needs to take a call, her virtual headphones allow her to quickly step out, with a range of 50 metres supported away from her devices. 


As the end of the day approaches, Emma visits the Level 4 Wellness Centre for a yoga class. She tracks her wellness activities through her mobile device and can see that she's only one session away from a protein ball reward and reduced health insurance premiums.

As Emma’s day demonstrates, the world of work is changing at an extraordinary pace. Office environments must consider a multitude of competing business goals and aspirational ideas from intensifying collaboration and innovation to supporting quieter, focused “thinkers”, embracing five generations of workers to crafting personalised, delightful experiences for each and every employee and customer.

Interested in learning more about how experiential design can support today's workers? Check our more of our expert insights.