The goal of the webinar organized by Unispace “Business as unusual” and selected in the WOWbinar column, was to ask different interlocutors to understand how managers, professionals, experts are experiencing this moment and what will happen after this first transition phase when we will have to enter phase x.
How we’ll get back to a new normal: because undoubtedly this emergency has forever changed the way we work.
Unispace, an international company exclusively focused on office spaces, has provided some inputs starting from the history of the workplace changes following both technological and cultural evolution processes or -as in the current case- to respond to an emergency, like corona virus, which we would never have imagined.
The debate continued with the invited speakers:
Alice Valsecchi, People & Culture Specialist at Bending Spoons; Elia Bodellini, HR Director South Europe at Konica Minolta; Francesco Faccin, Industrial Designer at Studio Francesco Faccin; Luca Lomazzi, Country General Manager at Shiseido Italia; Michele Faioli, Associate Professor of Labor Law at Catholic University of Milan and CNEL expert adviser.
Starting from the issue of the workplace compliance with safety rules aimed at mitigating the risk of contagion. It seems the most plausible solution will be to rely on technologies, for example with apps to book presence in the office, meeting rooms. and support spaces, as well as filter areas for detecting body temperature, etc.
They talk about the possibility of creating neighborhood coworking spaces in order to take advantage of technologies not available at home and why not … ergonomic workstations and chairs.
However, some jobs and activities (such as sales) based on direct relationships with customers remain fundamental for creating new business opportunities.
They therefore talked about workplaces as social spaces, communication vehicles, places of emotion that represent corporate culture and express the brand: spaces where to live an experience.
We have witnessed a turning point in the use of some technologies. The audio calls becomes now video and therefore intimate and personal worlds are now revealed …
How many times have we seen children appear behind our interlocutors! Once it almost caused embarrassment, today it has become something very human, very true.
But adaptation strategy cant’t just be smart working; it also need a corporate approaches and culture rethinking, smart working does not mean equipping employers with a laptop and installing instant chat and video call programs.
Of course, technological equipment must be provided, but a flexible, goal-oriented working model must be supported, processes must be simplified and companies have to invest in people and trust, increasing sense of responsibility, ensuring they take risks.
It is certainly a period of questions rather than answers for designers, we can hypothesize what the space of the future will be like. We can get ideas but maybe we will have to start from scratch: it will be like going back to school.
The Unispace approach, based on close collaboration with the customer and absolute spaces customization according to the actual needs of each company, will be even more successful because we will never be more different than tomorrow.
Text by Elena Caregnato, Principal Design Unispace.