Workplaces are never going to be the same again – lockdown showed us that pretty quickly. And it’s also obvious that FMs and office owners will be grappling with the results for a long time.
As masses of employees have tried out home working – and liked it – and offices make their transition to socially distant co-working, you’ve had a lot to take on board.
Many organizations are still rebuilding their business, protecting jobs and reviewing operating models.
See 5 significant factors driving post-pandemic businesses.
FMs and office managers continue to deal with the day-to-day changes and restrictions that coronavirus has imposed upon the US and the rest of the world.
Probably many of the changes being made to how we work will become permanent, even if a vaccine is created.
Twitter, for instance, has told its employees they can work from home forever – and many organizations have promised worker health and safety will never drop back down the agenda.
So what are the priorities for FMs and office managers like you, catering for an evolving workscape?
4 factors you must consider:
1. Rising demand for mobility
2. Workspace for wellbeing
3. Dismantling FM silos
4. Enhancing collaboration.
Rising demand for mobility
Mobility was a growing factor long before Covid19, but it’s even more important now, with access to desk hoteling and reverse desk hoteling a useful aid to office management.
Remote workers need to be able to locate and book their desk using desk booking software before they set foot in the office – no-one wants to waste time and create a potential contact risk by wandering around.
The best way to provide this search-and-book facility is via a desk booking software app on their phone, linked with a graphical floorplan that allows choice of workspace by parameters including co-location of colleagues, ambient temperature, quiet or lively space and available equipment.
Workspace for wellbeing
Extra facilities have been introduced in response to the need for personal safety and proper social distancing.
For instance, desk panels can now show when a desk was last cleaned; thermal image sensors reveal up-to-date information on occupancy levels, and tie in with desk booking software.
Dismantling facilities management silos
Technologies relating to FM have long been guilty of failing to connect up, reducing their effectiveness and creating frustration and wasted time for employees.
Efficiency is now more needed than ever before, and office owners will be placing a high emphasis on dealing with these connectivity challenges. Technology suppliers need to spend more time on providing end-to-end solutions.
Creating productive levels of collaboration in a mobile workforce takes effort – and the right tools.
The world has fully got to grips with using virtual collaboration tools like Zoom and Microsoft Teams.
The most efficient organizations will continue to leverage these tools by supporting them with technology like meeting room booking software that makes it simple to organise a video conference even across time zones.
Tips: how to get everyone back to work safely.
Organizations across the US reacted fast to overcome the chaos of the corona crisis and keep going.
Those efforts, born out of necessity, have created the potential for a new way forward for workplaces, with flexibility creating productivity, cost reductions and enhanced wellbeing.
The future is still unclear, and businesses continue their fight to deal with the aftermath of lockdown and crisis.
But as our workplaces continue to evolve, workspace technology such as meeting room booking software will continue to grow and change – and the facilities management industry will be at the forefront of creating a more agile working environment than we have ever seen before.
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