Oct 15, 2019 in Viewpoint

How to smarten up your office

The benefits of a smart office are enormous, from attracting and retaining talent to increasing the productivity of employees and reducing housing costs. But the previous viewpoints left out one big question. Probably the one you’ve been keen on finding out: how to smarten up your office? It’s not as difficult as you may think.

Esmeé van Vliet
by Esmeé van Vliet
Smart office
A smart office is a collaboration between technology partners who can communicate and work together.

Make your office an exciting one

A smart office is a collaboration between technology partners who can communicate and work together. And by investing in the Internet of Things, you can easily turn your office around and make it exciting! So, where to start?

Embrace activity-based working

The new way of working is more social, and collaboration is key. This is, of course, one of the biggest reasons why you need a smart office. With activity-based working employees no longer have fixed desks, they can move around the office and choose their workplace based on their activity. Therefore, you need to have everything in place and have a variety of different workplaces available. Think of phonebooths for private calls, focus areas to read and write, collaborative hubs for working together, fun areas for social interactions and different types of meeting rooms for sharing, creating, deciding and presenting. Now… we can start!

Smart office
Make your office an exciting one

Step 1. Pick your objectives

You now have different types of spaces for all kind of activities. The next step is defining what you want to know about it. Do you want to know the individual desk occupancy? Or is an indication already enough? The same goes for meeting rooms: do you want to have insights in no-shows? Or is meeting room occupancy all you need to know?

Pick the right way to collect data
All the information sensors can gather can help to analyse and optimise the office. Without data, an office just wouldn’t be smart. So, make sure you have the right office analytics to gather, analyse and optimise your office. Are you wondering what data can tell you? Here are 3 things you need to know about data and machine learning as a facility manager.

Step 2. Create a digital version of your smart office

To get a good overview of your office, you need a digital twin. A digital 3D model of your smart office, to help you gain insight into the office and navigate through it. With a 3D model, you can see the rooms, workplaces, and sensors. A digital twin can help employees find workplaces and meeting rooms, and help building owners get insight in the data of the office. But that’s not possible without one other key component: sensors.

Step 3. Equip your office with sensors

Your office needs to be equipped with hardware, to collect data. Sometimes we can use devices that are already there. In other cases, sensors can be easily built-in during the construction phase of an office, or they can be installed afterward. Sensors can send the information we just mentioned, to the cloud.

Step 4. One platform

The systems to book meeting rooms, open smart lockers, find colleagues and open doors are usually different ones. You want one tool. To create the backbone of your smart office, you have to integrate them all into one. Luckily, our cloud-based office platform seamlessly integrates every facility system to create a smart office for all to thrive in.

Step 5. Give employees the tools to move easily through the office

To make sure employees can work the most efficiently in the office, you must give them the tool to do so. Not just giving them a flex desk, but giving them insight in where desks are free, at what floor a meeting room is available and where they can find the colleague they are looking for. For employees, an app on their smartphone, a website or kiosk in the lobby can help them choose the right workplace at the right time, without wasting any.

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