Over the last decade, technological advancements have minimized the need for employees to be as physically present in a traditional office setting. Central to this change is the ever-increasing access to high-speed Internet services, mobile technology and cloud-based collaboration services. And increasingly, these tools are also changing the nature of employee relationships, which often extend across different time zones and geographies and require better and better technologies to create effective collaborations.
This paper discusses the future of work and the workplace in that context. We examine the shifting nature of actual workspaces, from four office walls to the online world; the emergence of new flexible hours that no longer require a nine-to-five mindset; the role of consumer-grade technologies such as iPads, smartphones and notebooks in the workplace; and what role cloud-based services such as Box.net, Huddle and Dropbox play.