People and the working environment

Foto: Ludmilla Parsyak, © Fraunhofer IAO


Creating ideal conditions for sustainable performance

Motivated and committed employees are the most important resource available to successful companies and customer-oriented public authorities.

Employers that systematically create ideal work models and conditions also

  • strengthen their own position amid global competition and
  • make themselves more attractive to employees and applicants.

Fraunhofer IAO sets the benchmark for establishing modern-day worlds of work that are scientifically conceived and practically defined.

Our wide-ranging expertise is unique in Germany and allows our institute to provide customized solutions for

  • designing workplaces and
  • innovative work models or
  • planning entire development centers.

Our goal is to improve people’s health and their productivity by finding the best ways of organizing the increasingly digital and knowledge-based work that is defining the 21st century.



Work and office environments

Fraunhofer IAO researchers have been thoroughly investigating the conditions and requirements needed to enhance employee performance, motivation and well-being for many years. As part of the OFFICE 21® joint research project, we collaborate with our industry partners to design office environments and work concepts.


Research and development environments

By creating the ideal conditions in which their employees can enhance their creative and innovative power, companies also generate an essential competitive advantage. At Fraunhofer IAO, we have a large stockpile of experience in designing workplaces in the R&D sector that we use to optimize innovation processes.


Efficient collaboration

A key factor in optimizing added value is ensuring efficient collaboration – both within your company as well as with customers and service partners. In determining which collaboration applications are suitable, we take into account technical aspects as well as the situation and corporate culture in question.


Digital work environments

Digital work environments are becoming an increasingly common feature in today’s offices. To ensure knowledge workers have the best possible support, we provide our customers with digital environments tailored to their individual workplace requirements – such as multi-touch workstations for individual or collaborative work.


Ergonomic products and work systems

Ergonomic analysis and design count among Fraunhofer IAO’s core competencies. Always focusing on the user, our interdisciplinary team develops and designs consumer goods, tools, machines, work environments, information systems and user interfaces. We carry out analyses, testing and development work in an excellently equipped environment featuring state-of-the-art development and testing laboratories.


Virtual human simulation

With the help of interactive, real-time visualization, motion capturing and virtual human models, we can put products through their paces on the test bench and avoid costly development misadventures. Virtual human models make it possible to factor in ergonomic aspects in advance and to simulate user behavior and application cases.


Combining work and care

One in ten working people also has to care for a relative. At Fraunhofer IAO, we have been researching how this increase in having to care for relatives is affecting the world of work since 2006. As part of the Work and Care 2020 innovation project, we are collaborating with industry partners and care providers for seniors to develop concepts that help people combine care and career.