Microsoft has joined forces with workplace design and architecture company Steelcase to help usher in a new era of creativity in the workplace.
The partnership between the two companies will combine the best of Microsoft Surface devices and the architecture of Steelcase to form five new ‘Creative Spaces’ designed to help companies both physically and digitally revolutionise their workplaces.
These Creative Spaces are designed to blend technology and design together, allowing people to harness their own creative potential, improving not only their work, but also their collaboration with co-workers.
This comes at a time when the importance of creativity in the workplace is huge. Indeed, a PricewaterhouseCoopers 2016 CEO survey, found that creativity was one of the key skill needed for employees.
CEOs also believe that creativity is the most challenging skill to recruit and retain in employees, highlighting the importance of environments which foster and encourage idea generation.
“Together, Steelcase and Microsoft believe that a thoughtfully designed workplace – that brings together the right mix of technology and space design – can unlock the creative potential of individuals and teams, stimulate ideas and accelerate business transformation,” says Ryan Gavin, general manager of surface devices at Microsoft. “This is not simply about creating new desks, chairs or conference rooms. This is about two committed partners coming together to reimagine what the workplace of the future will look like, paying close attention to the constantly evolving rhythm of people’s days, and creating physical spaces to help individuals and teams optimise their creative potential.”
In addition to working on the new Creative Spaces, select Steelcase dealers will also be able to resell Surface Hubs to their customers immediately in the United States and Canada, with the United Kingdom and Germany to follow this summer.
Over the coming months, Steelcase will also announce new technology-enabled workplace solutions built on Microsoft Azure IoT technology, providing companies with analytics that improve workplaces, alongside solutions to help employees find the best places to carry out diverse types of work within their office.