Future of The Workplace LegalNet RIMS Golden Gate Chapter

RIMS Discusses Concerns on Future of The Workplace

Here at LegalNet, we love to stay up-to-date with industry happenings and meet with the best and brightest. Last month, we attended the incredible RIMS Conference in San Diego, CA. To keep the momentum moving, we stopped by our local RIMS Golden Gate chapter meeting in San Francisco, CA where we discussed the future of the workplace.

It was a weekday lunch meeting at the beautiful City Club of SF. Our speakers included Alan Kubits of Ebay, Helen Kim of Old Republic, and Ryan Kilcullen of Willis Towers. We spent the hour discussing the future of our workplace in age demographics, environments, new trends, and ergonomics. Here’s the breakdown:

Future of the Workplace

Demographics

The modern workplace includes international cultures, groups of all ages, and a mix of employee vs. contractor.

Demographic Concerns

  • Management must address the cultural differences so that people aren’t offended.
  • Crucial to set goals based on what creates happiness for each target group.
  • Some age groups have different priorities.
  • Millennials set a higher priority on flexible schedules and work/life balance than other age groups.
  • Fun fact: Millennials now make up the largest working age group.

Environments & New Trends

There are a growing number of employees who are remote, work from home, or work from mass transit. In the workplace, we are also seeing more community lounges, game rooms, open floor plans, “fun” environments, walking meetings rather than a sit-down boardroom chat, pet-friendly offices, and employees on social media with references to the company.

Environment & Trends Concerns

  • For commuters using hands-free or WiFi on a google bus, when does the workday begin?
  • Home offices aren’t covered by OSHA so how can we know that the offices are safe (secure internet, electric lines, hazardous wires)?
  • What activities in a home office are covered by Workers Compensation Insurance?
  • Just adding a game room doesn’t make your company fun. It has to be true to your company culture.
  • When employees bring pets, we need to consider if other employees are allergic and what happens if the pet bites someone.
  • Companies should add a Social Media policy to their company handbook so that accounts can reference the company. The policy should state what is and isn’t okay to post if an account talks about work-related topics.

Ergonomics

Companies are using well-designed workspaces to increase productivity and decrease risk of injury. Statistics show that using ergonomic furniture decreases cases of common musculoskeletal disorders caused by overexertion (costs companies over $13 billion per year) & bodily reaction (costs companies over $5 billion per year). One popular ergonomic trend is a stand/sit desk, where employees can alternate between one or the other.

What is your company culture like? What risks are involved by moving towards new trends?


Jackelyn Ho
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