The fact that companies are experimenting with these 'open areas' confirms, at the very least, that they are aware of the archaic and inhumane nature of traditional hierarchical workplaces. This move also reflects some studies that have been done regarding productivity, which have suggested that workers are more productive in environments that are less constrictive, and that workers typically are only productive for a few hours a day. So, if anything, it's an attempt by companies to adjust with the times and do away with old forms of organization.
Unfortunately, attempts like these only tend to create more internal contradictions to capitalism. Attempting to mask the inherent nature of capitalism only goes so far. And the "open-office model" that Google became known for is not really an effort to make hierarchical structures more horizontal. It is concerned only with literal workspace, not with the ways in which the hierarchy operates on a structural level. And while it may appear to be benevolent on the surface, it often has more insidious motives. A 2014 article by Lindsey Kaufman touched on some of these issues, pointing out that "these new floor plans are ideal for maximizing a company's space while minimizing costs," and that "bosses love the ability to keep a closer eye on employees," with less physical barriers obstructing them. Studies cited in the article suggested that these open-office experiments were not beneficial to workers, at least from the workers' point of view. A study found that many workers are "frustrated by distractions" and lack of privacy, both sound and visual. And workers reported that these new floor plans did not ease interactions with colleagues, as intended, because this was never viewed as a problem to begin with.
With these results in mind, it seems such attempts have been a failure. And it makes you wonder why they were attempted in the first place. Was it really to create a "friendlier" atmosphere, or was it rooted in something more sinister? Understanding the way capitalism operates, it's safe to assume the latter. Either way, despite the motivations, the capitalist structure still remains - which means that most workers are creating massive amounts of wealth for executives and shareholders in exchange for wages and salaries that do not equal their contribution. If they make enough to lead comfortable lives, they may be more willing to overlook this structural exploitation. But it still exists. Bosses still remain, and workers are still treated as commodities, no matter how glossed over the physical workplace appears. There are still those who make more, in many cases a whole lot more, for doing much less (the pursuit of "money and idleness" that I referenced in the piece). And some who rake in large amounts of money for doing absolutely nothing, and without even stepping foot in the workplace. That is the fundamental nature of both capitalism and hierarchies. No amount of makeup can change this."
Read the interview here.