The future to building a smart office oasis

Sep 10, 2018 Smart Building

Imagine the workplace to be a dream-haven, a place where systems flow, people integrate, productivity brims and short naps score you brownie points. It could actually be a reality.

The adage ‘work smart, not hard’ is not far from the truth when it comes to the workplace. Technology moves us along into a data-driven society but fails to address the raw reality of people problems that arise when referring to an employee experience, job satisfaction and well-being. As a result, publication, Gallup, reports that a staggering 87 percent of workers who reported are disengaged at work.

Cameron Douglas, Director of Connected Vision and Video Pro, at the Integrate Expo, shares the view that people are the epicentre of any business.

“One doesn’t always equal three, it might equal 1.5,” he says. “ You can’t paint everybody with the same brush, and an experience loved, is an experience shared.”

The McKinsey’s , a specialist employee experience company, defines a good employee experience as “companies and their people working together to create personalised, authentic experiences that ignite passion and tap into purpose to strengthen individual, team and company performance.”

Evidence suggests that enhancements to the ‘workplace experience’ are necessary to fuel workers and their productivity. Deloitte’s Digital Workplace research finds that employees are seeking better ways to work and build relationships coherent to the fast moving market.

The Harvard Business Review – The Twelve Attributes of a great place to work, finds that only 20 percent of employees around the world are fully engaged at work. Millennials make up 75 percent of an entire global population and by 2025 their need for flexibility, collaboration, autonomy and connection will be key. The question for employers is ‘how can this be brought together to create the ultimate working oasis’?

What do employees want and need?

Productivity continues to dominate the core of organisations, and with the rapid change in the digital era one thing remains—well-being in the workplace. Technology is merely the tool to conduct a more efficient workplace. Employees need three things met by employers, according to the 2018 Global Talent Trends report by Mercer;

  • permanent flexibility
  • commitment to health and well-being
  • working with a purpose

Smart Office technology with the likes of video walls in boardrooms for conferencing, display screens for content branding and boardroom meeting trackers are some examples of convenience and efficiency that boost productivity levels in a smart office.

Video Pro’s video conferencing solution helped Optus maximise client facing interactions and in-house meetings by implementing a unique video wall comprising 13 narrow bezel, high-brightness LCD displays to support dual video conferencing.

Digital meeting trackers can instantly survey employee satisfaction and feedback to in-house discussions. Employee digital trackers are invaluable to co-ordinators when working in a multi-story building, making scheduling seamless.

What is the Smart Office Oasis and how does it help shape employee experience?

Connected Vision’s Director, Cameron Douglas, describes his approach to creating a smart workplace  ‘through the lens of the employee’ taking three factors into consideration:

  • Place – Where the business is located for a better lifestyle.
  • Space – The internal working space of the employee factoring (Desks, position, lighting).
  • Interface – How an employee engages with it (personalised voice tracking and the simplicity of technology.

The smart office design: the old versus the new

We’ve come a long way to the evolution of  more productive offices to deliver a greater employee experience, and the reason is simple—the people are the focus. Remote working had become an alternative to inflexible and disengaged working environments, that is until the smart office came in and changed this dynamic.

Smart office design focuses on getting people back into the a collaborative work environment. It focuses on people’s preferences, their profiles and the overall experience derived from smart technology and a new sense of belonging that creates a lifestyle at work.

According to research in the Aruba white paper research (2018 Global Real Estate Market Outlook, CBRE Research) enhanced experiences in the smart digital workplace can make all the difference.

Productivity and collaboration is the core focus of what we do at Video Pro, explains Douglas, “ We can control things on their phone, for example. We are trying to build the experience for them to engage with, and it’s something they already own. In a touch panel world, users can now book a meeting room via their laptop or phone. They can walk up to their desk at work and it will dock. When you dock into a desk in an agile environment in a 10 story office space, someone on the 7th floor can be easily found with our location services.”

Smart technology and its benefits

Smart office technology is there for the taking. Be it automation, professional catering, tracking sentiment or the like, they are many of the ways to engage with employees. Best of all, these experiences can be adapted to the layout of any office space and organisational structure, so long as there are workers involved. From small hubs to larger enterprises, the sky’s the limit.

Successful corporate meeting room solution examples implemented by Video Pro are already in market and include digital display panels to attract large groups in a presenting scenario, video conference solutions, audio and microphone systems that tailor to the organisation’s requirements. Optus, Griffith University and Newcrest Mining corporates are some of the inspiring case studies already transforming their worker experience.

Video Pro offer other technological triggers that help avoid duplication of meetings via control systems, interactive LCDs and display panels; for example, may improve the look and functionality of the space and meeting; coordinators can now enjoy hassle-free scheduling.

Organisations vested in smart technologies over the last 12 months are already manifesting results.  The  Aruba study, The Right technologies unlock the potential of the workplace  proves 73% of workers say digital technology has increased their productivity compared to 51% of laggards.

It is safe to say the smart working oasis is well on it’s way and looking pretty swell.

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