The rise of smart offices
The Industrial Revolution marked a shift from an agrarian and handicraft economy to large-scale manufacturing industries for the industrial, urban society. The need for office spaces has continued to increase ever since.
Next, came the digital revolution and the rise of businesses with flexible work hours. These businesses started to realize how buildings could be used smartly and more effectively to make their workforce most productive. Technological innovations started to be implemented to turn offices into comforting spaces to spend time in, and, in turn, make people who work there more effective. Smart offices were officially born and are now set to become the new normal.
In the future, we expect every office to be fully responsive. Technology and data will create ultimate harmony between the needs of employees, the facilities, and space. Creating a great place to work.
The basic elements of smart offices
Research shows that there are five super-drivers for a great day of work (Leesman+ , 690K respondents, 3.244 buildings, 90 countries):
Smart offices use technology (such as Wi-Fi, mobile applications, and sensors) to maximize the five drivers. They make it easier for employees to do focused work, plan meetings, take a fun break with colleagues, and collaborate effectively. Put simply, smart offices help make everyone in the office more productive while simultaneously improving their well-being.
The benefits of smart offices for leaders and managers
Smart offices allow company leaders to gain insights into what employees need to have a great day at work and the way they actually use the office. As a result, smart offices let managers make data-driven decisions to realize growth and take their business to the next level. On a strategic and tactical level, these insights are beneficial for the following:
The benefits of smart offices for employees
On a practical as well as an operational level, smart offices are highly beneficial for employees. The smart office technology enables them to have a frictionless day at work by simplifying their day-to-day activities:
Smart offices and employee well-being
As a leader in your business, you know that employees who feel well, perform great. This is backed by the American Psychological Association. Their study (2016) shows that 91% of workers feel motivated to do their best if their company is led by leaders who support well-being.
Another study (The Henry Miller Group, 2014) reveals multiple other benefits of employee well-being that might surprise you:
- Higher employee engagement
- Decreased absenteeism
- Reductions in health care costs.
Business leaders who use smart technology to give employees more autonomy over their day at work can directly improve overall employee well-being. Eliminating unnecessary employee frustrations also helps boost morale. What are you doing to improve the well-being of your employees?
Our research paper is packed with ideas and inspiration to get you started.
Smart offices and their ROI
The costs related to low occupancy rates and no-shows might surprise you. Did you know the average cost of a desk (office space) is €15.000 a year?
The reason why smart offices are known for their positive impact on business results is that their impact is two-fold. On the one hand, smart offices lead to significant cost reductions in multiple areas, and on the other hand, they help your employees create more value for your business.
The cost reduction best impacts the following costs:
- Building costs (accomplish more with less square meters)
- Operating costs (less wastage of time and energy).
Employees are able to generate more business value because of the below-improved processes:
- Efficiency in work, resulting in better quality output in less time
- More meaningful team collaborations
- Increased employee satisfaction leading to increased motivation.
More specifically, the study by the American Psychological Association (2016) reveals that the return on investment (ROI) of wellness initiatives are about $30 per month per employee and that employers got back roughly $3.80 for every $1.00 spent on employees. It’s becoming obvious that incorporating employee well-being as a core value can give your company an enormous boost.
How do smart offices work?
In a nutshell, smart offices use smart sensors and Wi-Fi to collect data. Next, the data is made accessible to decision-makers and employees in real-time through mobile applications and web browsers.
For example, a workplace sensor measures if a workspace is being used in real-time. Employees can use their app to see which workplaces are available or look around for smart desks with green lights that indicate a space is available.
Smart offices and COVID-19
Now that employees can come back to the office if needed, ensuring their safety is really important. Even though not all employees may return at the same time, it can still be difficult to comply with the 1.5-meter social distancing rule. Our data shows that available desks will decrease by 43%, on average. We help you build your smart office by doing the following for you:
- Calculating your new office capacity
- Identifying who is in the office and where
- Analyzing the occupancy per floor.
Inspiring smart offices
Smart offices are becoming the norm. It is no longer a question of whether you want your office to be smart, but how smart you want them to be. Be inspired by companies around the globe that benefit from their smart offices:
Perceived fears of smart offices
While the benefits of smart offices are clear, there are perceived fears of such offices:
To read more on your specific concern, click on them. While reading these articles, keep in mind that choosing a smart office partner with a great track record and proven results can significantly reduce risks.
Transforming your offices into smart offices is not about changing some switches and cables. It is about rethinking how you can use your workspace for employee well-being and business growth. Your offices should aim to drive connectivity and efficiency throughout your entire organization. Contact us today to learn more about how your organization can benefit from our smart office solutions.