Grasping the pace of change in tech development is becoming a skill we all have to master. But putting this new tech to work to help enhance your business and drive performance and productivity is still something many businesses have yet to do.
2016 is already looking like the year that significant new tech is set to transform the way we do business and whilst many of these advancements have been talked about for a while it’s this year that will see many really take off in offices around the country.
Here are a few ways office tech will develop in the year ahead:
Big data can unlock what your customers really want
Many businesses have a rich source of data at their disposal but a surprising number are not maximising the opportunity that their data presents. Understanding customer preferences and purchasing decisions allows companies to unlock what their customers really want and when they want it.
Printing and Scanning without wires
Cloud printing is a major advance providing employees with the ability to print whilst on the move. With providers like Ricoh developing solutions that allow companies to offer flexible printing solutions, employees can now benefit from a fully connected service.
Even 3D printing is finding its way in to offices as the cost of the technology becomes cheaper allowing its advantages to be fully exploited by both small and large business alike.
Bring Your Own Device
The worry that comes from people using their own equipment at work stems mainly from a lack of procedures to cover how the tech is used in the workplace. IT directors are embracing this latest challenge by acknowledging that it comes with huge hardware cost savings and means IT departments spend less time maintaining existing equipment.
BYOD is not new but with many companies putting clear policies in place it will definitely develop in 2016. With cloud storage and new tablet notebooks, working from a hot desk or a drop in point at a regional office is now an accepted part of everyday work.
And this innovative tech that will help increase productivity and customer retention should be balanced with an office environment that encourages teams to be more collaborative and engaged. We’ve all seen Google and Microsoft’s offices with cafes and soft seating areas around open plan communal working spaces. Lots of smaller businesses are now embracing this type of work space in order to encourage employees to feel part of the bigger company picture.
The BYOD revolution has encouraged people to accept that working from a comfortable seat in an inspiring location is almost the norm. With the explosion of co-working spaces around the country, work space design has taken great leaps forward.
Three big developments this year will be the move towards multi-purpose workspaces, the use of colour in the workplace and the drive to finally de-clutter the office.
With space costs rising, the need to make the office work harder is as important as ever. Multi-purpose space is on the rise with non designated seating and communal tables for both meetings as well as a comfortable place for a small group of people to work. Even standing desks are now popular, making even the smallest of spaces work much harder and delivering an improved return on investment.
Inspiring people with Colour
There are many studies about the use of colour that prove it can help improve happiness, wellbeing and productivity in the workplace. Lots of businesses are adding colourful accessories and using colours to highlight certain areas like work bays, lounge areas, specific departments and communal spaces.
A recent trend to bring the outside inside has seen the use of colour extended to textures with the introduction of wood and stone along with stunning artwork. We all know about the calming aspects of the colour green so it can be no surprise that plants, small trees and images of woodland and countryside are being used to improve interior spaces and create an inspiring place to come to work.
Look no Wires!
The spaghetti under your desk and also on it for that matter has long been a topic of conversation in the office. With every new piece of equipment it just gets worse not better. Many companies are now seeing the negative aspects of this office clutter and doing something about it. With the move towards more multi-purpose workspaces it’s more important than ever to ensure the equipment used in the office is set up well and can be easily moved or replaced.
As the way we work continues to change it’s going to be important that office space keeps up with developments in working practices, technology and the need to protect the investment businesses make in their people.
Header image by Carlo Ponti Photograghy