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How Innovation Is Shaping the Future of Work

How Innovation Is Shaping the Future of Work

2022-07-05

Pre-pandemic, the office-based work model was gradually shifting as forward-thinking companies were experimenting with greater flexibility in where, when, and how their employees work.

In 2020, companies not only had to accelerate this shift but implement full-time remote working for an extended period. As a result, many have been exploring what comes next as we collectively attempt to navigate the future of work.

Multiple studies point to hybrid work, providing greater autonomy and flexibility, as the preferred model for companies and knowledge workers. During the pandemic, many businesses discovered that their employees could function productively from home and that critical work functions, such as brainstorming and decision-making, could be performed remotely.

A hybrid work environment will be a non-negotiable for the office worker of the immediate future. Gen Z, born between 1997 and 2012, will make up 27% of the global workforce by 2025 , and companies will need to pay close attention to this demographic and their needs. Current research shows that Gen Z job seekers are more likely to inquire into a job posting.

Knowledge workers require not just greater flexibility and mobility, but a more agile office space that drives collaboration. By now, most business leaders know that the right technology can support and enhance this new way of work. Virtual and physical environments should blend seamlessly, yielding innovation as teams interact undisrupted.

These are the innovations worth tapping into now to stay ahead of the curve.

Agile Spaces for an Agile Workforce

Innovation in office space design has been ongoing as companies have been broadening the digitization of their operations. Now, two-thirds of business decision-makers are considering incorporating hybrid work as the office becomes a more flexible, functional space that supports greater collaboration through virtual interactions.

As we become more agile in our work, company office spaces need to adapt to various work scenarios. In addition, today’s offices need to be designed to support collaboration and build connections between highly mobile employees, especially as companies employ more distributed teams.

Tech giants like Google are experimenting with spaces that can easily be reconfigured to meet team needs. Rooms take on a life of their own as partitions and furniture become rearrangeable to whatever size or shape is most suitable for the task at hand. Google is also exploring conference spaces that simulate a campfire layout, using multiple displays for remote workers placed at eye level for a more authentic, natural experience.

Interactive, Video-Centric Spaces

Supporting greater workplace interaction, video conferencing will continue to play a pivotal role in bringing distributed teams together. Companies that recognize the importance of this medium are now creating dedicated video-centric spaces designed to inspire and drive creativity.

Everything from huddle rooms and boardrooms to big open-plan settings must be equipped with the right technology to support collaboration effectively.

Using Tech To Help Navigate the Future of Work

Innovative technologies are introduced to facilitate this shift as work and workspaces become more flexible. Forward-thinking companies equip their spaces with data-driven smart technologies, contactless office controls, advanced AV solutions, and virtual collaboration tools.

These technologies help shift to a smoother hybrid work environment while driving creativity and collaboration.

VR and AR

Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) platforms and tools will support the shift to hybrid work, bringing distributed teams together in a shared space where they’ll once again be on equal footing.

There’ll no longer be the potential for side conversations that a remote worker might miss out on — it’ll be a space for everyone to hear and be heard. These tech advancements will also help the office worker of the future create personalized, distraction-free environments when they need to focus.

Smart Buildings for a Bring-Your-Own-Device World

The office building, equipment, and services are set to become more accessible to workers through personal devices, supporting a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) world. For example, workers can access printers, call for a lift, share their screen on a conferencing display, or book a meeting room via their devices.

All this and more will be achievable through the touch of a button, scanning a QR code, or biometric technology, streamlining an employee’s workplace experience.

Advancements in Video Conferencing Support Collaboration

Video conferencing helped us stay connected during the height of the pandemic and continues to play a central role in the hybrid work environment. Investment in AV technology continues unabated, with companies continuously introducing new advanced tools and equipment to boost the collaborative experience.

Wireless connectivity, the seamless integration of existing devices, all-in-one display solutions, and high-tech camera and sound systems help elevate engagement for in-person and remote meeting participants. The solutions you choose should ideally be simple to use, easily accessible, and versatile in their ability to adapt to any environment.

Tech-Enabled Interactive Boardrooms

As the Internet of Things (IoT) takes hold and the surfaces in our boardrooms become as interactive as our current devices, collaboration will undoubtedly flourish. The room itself will eventually take on a life of its own, evolving through VR, AR, 3D projectors, and holographic streaming, allowing for a truly immersive multimedia experience. Whether remote or in-person, meeting participants will all share in heightened engagement, inspiring creativity.

AI and Big Data in Office Design

Artificial intelligence (AI) paired with big data can help companies understand staff movement in the office, how employees use spaces, and how they interact throughout the workday. In response, they can optimize the design and layout of the workplace to boost performance, collaboration, and creativity.

Employers can also use the latest AI technology and data insights to provide a less restrictive, more interactive employee experience, positioning the office as a destination and not just a place of work.

Technology Helps Us To Stay Connected

The future of work is hybrid, and the technology to support this evolving environment is advancing swiftly, keeping distributed teams connected while enhancing collaboration and creativity.

Whether through AR, VR, or the next yet unnamed innovation, video-first communication is how we'll stay connected and navigate the future of work together.

As an R&D-led organization, MAXHUB develops a range of industry-leading solutions that help keep people seamlessly connected. Learn more about how we innovate to bring our customers the cutting-edge solutions they need.

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