17/08/2022

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Curating a best-in-class workspace experience involves having the right building blocks and framework in place, from purposeful workplaces to real-time monitoring. However, there is one vital element that underlies everything: technology excellence.

Let’s be clear that this doesn’t mean technology investment for its own sake, but rather the right technology. Investment into technology must be purposeful and strategic: we must ask what it’s for and what it needs to do before we push the button on new investment and deployment.

So first we need to identify what we are trying to achieve across our portfolio, for example: attracting employees back to the office; increasing engagement; digitally enabling spaces and buildings; delivering on-demand services; attracting and retaining talent; fostering corporate culture; increasing productivity; managing costs; or providing the right environment for the collaborative aspects of business, such as training, selling, creating, onboarding and ideating.

In particular, we must find the right balance between the sometimes conflicting demands of a modern office space. Take security, for example. A secure network is essential to any business, but if you apply too many protocols, it can cause excessive friction and employees may find the office a difficult place to work, as they re-enter credentials every time they log on to the Wi-Fi, book a meeting room or access a building. The friction impedes upon their productivity and the experience becomes littered with frustration.

Indeed, to attract people back to the collective workspace, technology has to be invisible and seamless – in other words, it simply works effectively in the background. Only then can you start to reap the rewards in terms of productivity, ROI and corporate culture. But when you get it right, those rewards can be significant. You retain your brightest talent, minimise recruitment and onboarding costs, optimise your floor space, and maximise collaboration and innovation.

Unfortunately, it’s all too common for many organisations to operate a silo approach, whether by design or inertia. The facilities department installs its own technology; so does HR, innovation teams, and so on. Pretty soon you’ve got an unmanageable tangle of disparate systems creating a highly complex operation that doesn’t scale. As you might expect, alignment is king. The plain fact is that you can’t do hybrid working without spending on technology – but in the right way.

That’s why best-in-class companies take a holistic view, developing and executing a coordinated technology implementation plan that’s backed by senior management and key stakeholders, with a clear roadmap. They include all their workplaces and focus on delivering a consistent, frictionless, and mobile-first approach portfolio wide.

To solve the common challenges faced by landlords and flex workspace operators in today’s fast-evolving office market in a simple and impactful way, without stress on resources requires intelligent network automation. Without this, simplifying the operational complexity of processes and in-building network management across buildings and spaces becomes convoluted and is almost impossible to scale. The foundational importance of integrated technology ultimately lays in the need to create smarter spaces that can accommodate evolving occupier requirements and deliver the seamless office experiences they’re looking for today and in the future.

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