Creating effective workspaces
Goodbye 2021 and another year of uncertainty, remote working, restrictions to lifestyle, and the general impact of the global pandemic. You could be forgiven, based on the data points from across the world in late December, that 2022 would begin with lockdowns and further restrictions. Despite the rapid acceleration of Omicron around the globe, indications are now pointing to the variant being milder than previous strains, giving us all the glimmer of hope that 2022 will be a brighter year as we finally move past the nightmare that has been the last 2 years.
As we face the ‘Great Resignation’ with more people that ever choosing to leave their employers and seek out company cultures and values that best reflect their own, we are facing a new challenge in the workplace. How to create working environments where people feel valued and can do their work effectively.
In this article, we look at five emerging workspace trends in 2022 and how to take advantage of them in your business.
1. Choose technology that promotes health and safety
When thinking about the workplace experience, one of the primary considerations must be the people that interact with your workplace. Relationships, policies, and culture are critical elements when creating a workplace that people feel comfortable in and want to engage with. One of the key focuses must be demonstrating that health and safety are key considerations for employers and that goes beyond purchasing a few bottles of hand sanitiser. Touchless sign in devices like the Urben Kiosk enables businesses to return to the office as safely as possible through virtual receptionists and wayfinding while space management tools such as Go Bright enable desk and room booking to ensure that social distancing can remain in place for safety. Analytics can also monitor space usage for future office layouts.
2. Ensure everyone is equipped for video, everywhere
With the rapid adoption of video collaboration over the last two years, companies need to ensure that video meetings can happen wherever and whenever is required. Video calls can no longer be restricted to the board room. Organisations need to deliver technology and spaces that enable people to connect via video instantly, with no restrictions. Investing in good quality audio and video technology from brands like Logitech will ensure that everyone always feels part of the conversation. As important is the investment video spaces within the workspace. Meeting rooms should be equipped with solutions that are easy to use and flexible for different use cases. From one-to-one conversations to board meetings, spaces need to be adaptable and intuitive.
3. Explore better ways to engage remote employees
The emergence of hybrid working translates to meetings where some of the participants may be remote. In 2021 Google introduced the concept of virtual ‘Fireside’ chats. Employees sit in a circle with remote attendees appearing on life-size displays in between on-site folks, delivering meeting equity for everyone, regardless of location. Focused on disruptive technology, Urben are developing a range of solutions designed to enhance hybrid collaboration and connect remote and in-office employees seamlessly. The Urben Firepit is an example of Urben’s approach to innovation. Unique in the market, the Firepit features displays in the middle of the meeting space with furniture placed around the outside, delivering an immersive experience for remote participants by bringing them into the heart of the conversation.
4. Consider space management
The increased number of video meetings will inevitably lead to greater demand for spaces. Companies need to consider alternative ways for people to meet for video collaboration. Furniture is a key element in creating flexible workspaces that can transition quickly and easily from small huddle spaces to larger, traditional meeting room environments. Technology like the Urben Mobi provides a truly mobile video conferencing solution that delivers you total flexibility. Bring video into any space as and when you need it. Share resources amongst multiple rooms or create spaces that can be used for a variety of different meeting scenarios.
5. Invest in cloud security
The FBI reported a 400% increase in cybersecurity complaints at the start of the pandemic, equating to 4,000 complaints every single day. As more of us access their work remotely, from anywhere and on any device, cloud security should be a priority for any organisation. Investing in a cybersecurity strategy should be a goal for 2022, ensuring that all individual devices are secure. Companies should start with a cybersecurity audit to assess their specific gaps that may need addressing.