Based on a recent poll that LinkedIn conducted, the respondents thought that the fax machine would be one of the first things to disappear from a modern office. In fact, they thought that it would be obsolete in as little as five years from now. Aside from the fax machine being one of the uppermost choices, respondents also said that the Rolodex, a rotating device for storing business contacts’ information that was once a staple in every office desk, and the tape recorder were also thought to make a disappearance in the near future. Some individuals may still believe that fax machines are a suitable form of communication but with the advent of internet fax, this may no longer be the case.
Nicole Williams, LinkedIn’s Connection Director, said that they created the poll to see if the internet is altering the process of how people apply for employment opportunities since LinkedIn is fast becoming one of the most powerful tools for sourcing and recruitment. Their premise was that the continuing popularity of their service might someday render resumes obsolete. The findings were somewhat surprising since resumes did not even make the top ten list of things that were in danger of disappearing which means that the individuals looking for employment still place a high value on the traditional resume. This may not have been the answer LinkedIn was looking for since they are a service that advocates electronic resumes.
The survey also asked their respondents what devices or technologies they could see take over the workplace and their answer was not much of a surprise: cloud computing, tablets, and smartphones. Along with those mentioned technologies, it was interesting to see that the respondents also foresaw a more flexible work schedule coupled with a heightened reliance on video conferencing and telecommuting due to the surge of devices that promote portability.
Here are a few more insights gleaned from the poll.
10 office items and trends that are endangered:
Dream office tools
- A place in the office that has a stream of natural sunlight
- A clone to help accomplish tasks throughout the day
- A quiet portion of the office where napping is allowed
Some respondents got creative and listed these as suggested office upgrades:
- A ping pong table (The headquarters of RingCentral has this)
- A trolley for tea or coffee
- Private lifts to designated parking spaces
- A room with punching bags for stress relief
- A chair that generates heat
The most important message that they got, according to Williams, is that the world is changing and that things are becoming much more flexible.