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Workspaces are Going to Get ‘Smarter’

The year 2018 was a turning point, particularly in the smartphone app development space. An array of trends swept across enterprises, changing their workspaces and methodologies for better. From BYOD era to BYOX (bring your own everything) and BYOA (bring your own app), enterprises are becoming more and more empowered with mobility and ubiquity of smartphone applications.

Besides, with mobile and sensor technologies, IoT devices, AI and blockchain technology becoming popular concepts in the enterprise space, businesses have reached a mature stage of acceptance towards the technological overhaul.

Yet, many industry experts believe that business and application leaders did not foresee this change impacting workspaces. This is partly because businesses were either too focused on addressing initial adoption challenges or struggling to use technology for achieving operational efficiency.

Despite this oversight, businesses now seem to have ‘picked up’ the need for cutting-edge tools and technology investments for better performance and productivity as well as streamlined workflows. Smart office technology convergence in workspaces will be the next big evolution for enterprises.

It All Starts with Cloud!   

Cloud computing technology is one of the powerful agents of change that has helped many organizations transform themselves digitally. Cloud has been an important investment decision for most enterprises owing to its security, privacy and scalability. That adds credence to the finding that nearly 66 per cent of the IT professionals believe in adopting enterprise cloud computing strategy for security. Another research-backed prediction by LogicMonitor suggests that by 2020, 83 per cent of the enterprise workloads will be in the cloud. So be it public, private, hybrid or on-premise cloud, enterprises will find their own reasons to ensure they migrate to the cloud for better agility, safe access and revenue.

Incidentally, research has found AI, machine learning and IoT adoption to be some of the other factors that would accelerate the adoption of cloud computing by 2020.

Worker Digital Dexterity Will be a Serious Priority

According to Gartner, digital dexterity refers to workers’ cognitive and social abilities and practices that will help define digital business success. Workers’ digital dexterity is useful in ensuring that the organization is equipped enough to handle the change and make the best use of data.

Today, the digital transformations at workplaces include blockchain, 3D technology, IoT, smartphone apps and AI. Concurrently, enterprises will use Software-as-a-service applications or SaaS for cloud and management of human resources in addition to the adoption of applications for IT services management, finance, sales and other core areas like marketing.

With digital dexterity becoming a priority in enterprises and business community, it will be heavily measured, tracked and researched to define the best practices for collecting and leveraging data generated across the workspace.

AI is Meant to Stay      

It’s about time to rest all anxieties related to AI and look at it as a productivity tool. AI investment is increasing at a remarkable pace and with AI application, enterprises will transform into workspaces that are smarter and algorithmically-programmed. Gartner’s Vice President and leading analyst, Matt Cain pointed out that employees will not have to directly report to a typical AI construct. More enterprises will have robo-bosses for workplace automation and regular management of employees’ online activities as well as performance.  “Leaders can tap into an internal talent pool, and individual employees can both seek and be sought for work opportunities,” says Cain.

More Collaborative Work Environment

Smart offices will continue to make an enterprise smaller or approachable rather, collaborative. By leveraging sensor and beacon technologies, enterprises can employees to interact with respective teams and be guided by receiving relevant messages and notifications. This also helps increase safety and security standards in a work setting and simplify tasks that require follow-up and actual, real-world interaction with teams and stakeholders.

Connected Gadgets and Appliances

Devices and appliances connected to the internet are not purely restricted to manufacturing factory floors or smart homes. Office spaces are becoming smarter with intelligent sensors and network edge processing. From intelligent temperature sensors, air conditioners, cloud-connected printers, elevator and lighting systems, offices are evolving into intelligently managed workspaces to optimize working conditions.

Increasing Prominence of Analytics

Analytics will take the center stage as more and more organizations begin to depend on powerful analytics tools to enhance customer services, sales performance and to benchmark their workplace technologies. According to the 2017 insights by PR Dimension Data’s Digital Workplace Report: Transforming Your Business, 64 per cent of companies use analytics to boost customer services.

The report also emphasizes that while companies are responding to these changes, there is still plenty to be done to transform them into smart workspaces. Although 30 per cent of the organizations agreed to have been a part of the smart revolution, others believe their corporate culture is one of the main reasons to stall the adoption of the smart technology for digital workspace.

The Rise of Remote and ‘Gig’ Economy Platforms

The community of independent, remotely working freelancing professionals that can be reached via online and professional networking platforms for delegating short-term projects or ‘gig’ economy as worded by Gartner is expanding at a tremendous rate. This sudden shift in demand from in-house talent to freelancers or contractors push social networking platforms and recruitment technology solution providers to use algorithms to supply relevant talent and connect them with work opportunities. This also leads to the establishment of meaningful, project-focused connections between businesses and professionals with the right competencies through the development of remote and gig economy platforms.

Besides some research stats and conclusive figures concerning the adoption of ‘mainstream’ technologies, organizations will continue to explore the rudimentary, SMAC (social, mobile, analytics and cloud) arena to tweak their work culture and methodologies. The trend of working from home is slowly going to take over traditional work practices and is expected to increase up to 56 per cent in the next two years.

So, what is your take on the transforming your office with smart technologies?

Let us know by leaving your thoughts on the comment section below.

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