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Communications of the ACM

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Miss Your Office? Some Companies Are Building Virtual Replicas


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A virtual office.

Companies and employees that dont want to leave everything about the office behind are replicating their offices in SimCity-like simulations online.

Credit: Achtung mcgarrybowen/Isobar for WeTransfer

Some employers are building virtual reproductions of their offices as online simulations for workers in lockdown during the coronavirus pandemic.

File-transfer service WeTransfer's Gordon Willoughby said his company's three-dimensional virtual office replica helps provide the social experience of office life, which recent hires dealing with sudden disconnection often appreciate.

Facebook, Twitter, and other firms recently said many employees will work remotely in the future, even after the pandemic, yet some companies worry about losing the positive elements of a shared workplace, like in-person interactions.

Educators are exploring the concept as well, with the School of Communication Arts in London on its second simulation since it closed its physical doors on March 16.

From The Wall Street Journal
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