Tech companies such as Google and Facebook are known for their informal, non-traditional work environments. But these days, even older, more staid firms are creating headlines in this space, rethinking not only how their employees work, but also where that work happens.\nOver the past few years, while I\u2019ve been traveling to meet with business executives, I\u2019ve seen office buildings that feature everything from standing desks and roof-top gardens to upholstered co-working rooms complete with craft beer on tap.\nWhat\u2019s behind this evolution? At a time when workers are clamoring for more mobility, why are employers investing so much in the workplace?\n\nOffice space is at a premium. In many cities, real estate costs (whether you\u2019re buying or renting) have been surging. Case in point: In 2016, the average rent in New York City was $65.44 per square foot, up $5.86 from 2015. It\u2019s no wonder employers want to maximize the space they have.\nCorporate culture is more relevant than ever. As I discussed in my last post, the way people work is changing, driven mostly by advances in technology, combined with the needs for flexibility and mobility. On top of that, the way companies present themselves is changing. Today\u2019s companies are \u201cbrands\u201d that continually jockey for relevance, market share and distinction. As a result, office buildings are being used to make statements, and what was once ordinary office space is being transformed into inspiring work \u201cenvironments\u201d meant to attract not only employees, but also clients\u2014and buzz!\nNew office tech enhances collaboration and improves performance and productivity. Today\u2019s companies have no choice but to embrace digital transformation and enterprise agility. Why? Because efficient collaboration is now mission critical for enterprise teams, and for them to be successful, they need the right tools at their fingertips.\n\nAs Gartner recently pointed out\u00a0in its report "Predictions 2017: Boosting Business Results Through Personal Choice in the Digital Workplace," this kind of transformation of the workplace will require contributions across many different levels. It wrote in the report:\n\n\u201cDigital workplace leaders have to go further\u2014and not just in terms of adding apps, wearables, things and the physical office space to the equation. Digital workplace leaders have to institute policies, develop skills and disciplines, and establish technical architecture\u2014not just to offer employees options, but to delight employees the way consumer products organizations seek to delight consumers. They'll have to develop the organizational skills and technologies to learn and continually respond to the demands of the workforce.\u201d\n\nAnd the stakes are high. Gartner also warned that \u201corganizations that fail to accommodate a great variety of workstyles will suffer from employee churn and an inability to attract high-impact talent.\u201d\nSo, don\u2019t fall into the trap of thinking office space is becoming obsolete. Collaborative work environments are more important than ever\u2014provided they have the digital capabilities for workers to effectively communicate with their colleagues, whether those colleagues are in the next room or across the world.