Technology Encourages Longer Hours: Is That Bad or Good?

The “family” is in decline, partly due to longer and longer hours by many people working way too long. One thing encouraging these longer hours is the evolution of technology. Blackberry’s for example, which so many business persons have, enable near anywhere access all the time. Work, work,work, work, work.
While business productivity is good, too much of anything is bad. I rarely read about the businesses profiled in Inc Magazine from time to time who ENCOURAGE staff to leave at 5:30pm.
Office Team, released a research report “Office of the Future: 2020” and some of the findings include:
* Technology tools to provide even greater flexibility ¬? Miniature wireless devices, WiFi, WiMax and mobile technology will continue to allow a company¬?s staff to work outside of the office with greater ease. Additionally, virtual environments and web-based conferencing services will provide off-site employees with real-time access to meetings, reducing the need to travel.
* Telecommuting to rise ¬? Improved wireless connectivity will allow for an increasingly flexible workforce. Eighty-seven percent of executives surveyed believe telecommuting will increase in the next 10 to 15 years. Telecommuting enables employees to work where it¬?s most convenient, but it also challenges their interpersonal skills. They must build relationships with coworkers while having fewer in-person interactions.
* Staff to put in more time ¬? Forty-two percent of executives surveyed by OfficeTeam think employees will be working more hours in 10 to 15 years. Only 9 percent said they would be working fewer hours.
* Workers will stay in touch while on vacation ¬? With the proliferation of wireless technology, staff will be expected to remain in close contact with the office while they¬?re away. Eighty-six percent of executives surveyed said workers will be more connected to the office while on vacation in the future.
* Companies/employees take a new view on work/life balance ¬? People may put in more time, but they will do so using tools that provide more control over their schedules and enable them to better balance priorities. There will be an increasingly blurred line between work and other activities; people will need to multitask to meet all of their obligations efficiently.