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Your next meeting is at the cafeteria—bring your mobile device

By Dragana Beara, Sr. Solutions Marketing Manager, HP Networking Global Marketing



My neighbor was particularly excited to go to work today. Her company had spent the past few months renovating her office building. Gone are the cubes. Now groups of four or six employees sit side by side and across from each other at long tables. The front side of everyone’s workspace is separated by a screen so you can just see the top of the head of the person who sits opposite. A few feet from the tables are informal huddle spaces where employees can interact and hold impromptu meetings. And when my friend wants some privacy, she can retreat to one of the many booths dotted around her floor.


Instead of occupying offices, managers sit alongside team members so they can more easily communicate and collaborate. Conference rooms remain, but they are now available for many uses, including as "war rooms" in which project teams can set up camp to work on specific deliverables. Even the cafeteria has been redesigned to encourage staff to share and create new business ideas as they eat lunch. 


This office of the future is designed to promote staff interactivity and collaboration. The thinking is that this relaxed space will encourage staff to work together and create more innovative ideas for the benefit of the business.


Open-plan offices are popping up everywhere


My neighbor's company is one of many that have redesigned their facilities in this way. For example, Square, which makes a payments card-reader for mobile devices, recently moved its staff to a new facility that spans the length of one city block. Office features include a long indoor "boulevard" lined with open meeting tables, and “cabanas,” soundproof spaces for time alone or private meetings. Staff can sit on couches and chairs near windows to talk or work. Consultancies, tech firms, and universities boast similar modern office layouts.  


The popularity of the office of the future goes hand-in-hand with the explosion of enterprise mobile applications. According to Strategy Analytics, in 2013, at least 200 million mobile workers will use at least one business-focused app. These offices expand the definition of mobile worker from "road warrior" to include in-office employees working on their mobile devices while in a conference room, sitting in a cabana, or standing in line at the cafeteria waiting for their lattes.


Shape up your wireless infrastructure


This new way of working puts tremendous pressure on legacy wireless infrastructures that were designed to provide wireless coverage in limited spaces, such as meeting rooms and lobbies. Now, you need to extend coverage to every part of your campus. And connectivity must be consistent and highly available because users won't tolerate spotty coverage. And the network must be able to support many different device types with varying radio-frequency strengths. 


Our wireless LAN solutions give your workers a clear connection to the Wi-Fi, so they can work anytime, anywhere, even in crowded or noisy environments. HP Wi-Fi Clear Connect solution, for example, automatically enhances WLAN performance and reliability. Our unified wired and wireless access solutions can provide connectivity throughout a workspace and beyond. You can unify campus networks to improve the user experience, strengthen security, and simplify management. By integrating wired and wireless networks at the edge, you can more effectively enforce security and manage the network as a cohesive integrated system.


Act now


Learn more about establishing a robust wireless environment for your new office space. Read the HP

Wi-Fi Clear Connect white paper, and explore our range of unified wired and wireless solutions


>> For more information visit 

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