By tapping into the power of the Internet of things (IoT), real estate and facility managers can ensure their buildings are equipped to meet current and future needs, including employee demands.
Research from the global organisational consulting firm Korn Ferry from 2018 shows that companies with high levels of both employee engagement and enablement have up to four- and a half times more revenue growth than those with lower levels. So, what can organisations do to increase the engagement of their employees and attract new talent at the same time?
The Internet of Things is proving to be a critical part of the solution.
For instance, we have seen the rise of ‘smart’ offices and ‘smart’ buildings through the use of interconnected systems to make buildings and space more responsive, sustainable, and productive for users. IoT-driven platforms contribute to energy efficiency, and automated detection of anomalies in the building infrastructure. These can predict maintenance needs based on conditions – helping to provide greater comfort and wellbeing for every person inside. Equipped with sensors and user-centric interfaces, buildings are becoming connected, human-centric workspaces with an intuitive awareness of occupancy and utilisation.
But, how does this relate to improving employee engagement and enablement? Do employees and managers appreciate or even want these technological changes in their office buildings? Let’s look at some statistics presented by Dell Technologies:
- 54% of business leaders believe companies should equip employees with the latest personal tech solutions and tools
- 80% of Generation Z job candidates believe technology and automation will create a more equitable work environment
- An extra 27 days of productivity can be gained per user with a smarter workplace
Research from British Land in partnership with WORKTECH Academy also shows that many companies have high expectations around the potential business benefits that come with introducing intelligent building technology into their offices and buildings. Decision-makers believe that the main benefits of intelligent offices include:
- 51% increase in productivity and the well-being for employees
- 48% increase in successful recruitment of new talent
- 45% increase in employee loyalty
Organisations must be ‘smart’ about equipping their offices and meeting space with the right technological tools to meet their employees’ expectations around technology. Affordable sensors are now available that can measure the occupancy and air quality of a workplace or meeting room minute-by-minute, providing the ability to respond in real-time to employee needs. With the right technology, data collected from smart sensors provides information about what is happening in a space at any point in time. This can then be shown on a kiosk or mobile app to empower employees to choose the space that fits their needs.
The sensors also provide critical information to the real estate and facilities teams, so they can pro-actively adapt their space to meet demand while enabling longer term strategic real estate decision making. This can result in significant cost savings for the organisation as well.
It’s time for the business world to catch up with the consumer market and embrace smart technologies to create a more robust and energetic workplace for a workforce that is certainly demanding it.