Work, reinvent: technology will promote the development of the office

in A blog post in early May, Google CEO Sundar Pichai shared the company’s vision for the future of its workplace-more than a year ago, the covid-19 pandemic forced offices around the world to close almost overnight, and employees suddenly switched to Zoom, Microsoft Teams remote work, and many other virtual collaboration tools.

“The future of work is flexibility,” he said, adding that Google is “reimagining a hybrid workplace to help us collaborate effectively in many work environments.” He explained that this includes testing multifunctional workspaces and Develop advanced video technology to “create greater equality between office employees and virtual employees.”

In its efforts to keep up with the unprecedented post-pandemic office evolution, Google is far from alone. Citigroup recently announced Most employees will be designated as mixed employees and work in the office at least three days a week. Ford has stated that it will allow its 30,000 North American office workers to work in a flexible hybrid mode. Almost every organization in every industry is struggling to determine how to respond to and respond to the changing expectations and emotions of employees regarding their work styles and locations.

For example, Ernst & Young’s Employee survey of reimagining jobs in 2021 It was revealed that nine out of ten employees want to continue to maintain work flexibility, and if flexibility is not provided after the pandemic, more than half of the global employees would consider resigning.

In addition, employees’ expectations of work flexibility do not necessarily match their leaders.According to the most recent report Conducted by global market research company Ipsos and premium audio brands e-mail, 53% of decision makers believe that most employees will spend more time in physical workplaces instead of working remotely in the next year, while only 26% of employees hold the same view.

Employees also need more and better technologies to promote more and more flexible work styles and more complex on-site and remote collaboration options. Ipsos/EPOS researchFor example, it was found that 89% of end users are currently experiencing challenges when holding virtual meetings or seminars. Research has found that approximately 63% of end users worldwide experience problems during regular business conversations due to poor audio quality. The most common problems include background noise (32%), line interference (26%), and requests for repeated information (23%).

The shift to remote work highlights the need for flexibility, agility, and flexibility, not only in the way companies operate, but also in the way employees work. The current upheaval from a fully remote environment to a mixed possibility is a similarly disruptive moment that requires technological innovation to balance the work environment of all people—people working at home or other remote locations, and people actually in the office.

“The outbreak of the covid-19 pandemic is like a time machine that suddenly pushes us into the next few decades,” said Paul Silverglate, vice chairman and head of the US technology department. Deloitte, Talked about how networks, services, and devices can work together to effectively support the transition to working from home and going to school. “The underlying technology for these new behaviors has been truly tested and, in most cases, can meet the growing demand for connectivity. We have adapted, and we have reached the limit of what our current technology can provide.”

Investing in innovative technology is critical to employee experience

As organizations emerge from the pandemic, more than two-thirds (68%) of CEOs plan to make major investments in data and technology, and 61% of CEOs plan to adopt new transformation plans. Ernst & Young’s 2021 CEO imperative surveyThe question is, how does the company invest in innovative technologies to enhance the employee experience in the mixed workplace? After all, it becomes very clear that as people return to new hybrid workplaces, traditional conference rooms equipped with tables, chairs and hands-free phones will no longer be attractive.

Companies like Ernst & Young have invested heavily, including a conference room equipped with a life-size touch screen, integrated camera and speakers to provide an immersive meeting experience. Perkins+Will’s interior design director Meena Krenek said that more and more 360-degree cameras, microphones and speakers may be installed in gathering places, and the number of screens increases, turning conference rooms into “zoom rooms”. Renovate the office, including its own office, to adapt to the new working model.

Google is also creating a new conference room called Campfire, where the participants form a circle with large screens spreading out the faces of people dialing in through the video conference, so virtual participants and actual attendees are in the same position.

These measures reflect the consensus of all parties Bar/EPIC Research, It found that workers and leaders continue to see the benefits of virtual meetings. Approximately 79% of end users recognize the benefits of video for virtual meetings, an increase of 7% from 2020. In addition to saving time and costs compared to face-to-face meetings, 21% of decision makers said that video conferencing is helpful to them and feel closer to their team, and 17% believe it builds trust in working relationships.

No matter what the future of the workplace looks like, it should be aligned with the company’s culture and efforts to recruit and retain top talent.​​​

For example, many financial companies believe that face-to-face collaboration is very important and therefore require people to enter the office as soon as the economy reopens. On the other hand, in Silicon Valley, some companies are abandoning their headquarters to become completely remote organizations.

However, most companies are taking a hybrid approach: Accenture’s future of work in 2021 A study of 9,000 workers worldwide found that the vast majority of employees (83%) said that the hybrid model is most suitable for an efficient and healthy workforce.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella (Satya Nadella) said: “Employee expectations are changing, and we need to define productivity more broadly-including collaboration, learning and well-being, to promote the career development of each employee. “ Recent report“All of this needs to be done flexibly in the time, place and way people work.”

Learn more about EPOS virtual collaborative audio solutions Here. And listen to the EPOS podcast Here.

This content is produced by EPOS. It was not written by the editors of MIT Technology Review.

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