Jan 19, 2018Industry insights,
A workplace for 2018
As we charge full steam ahead into the start of 2018, many business owners are starting to review the tools and technologies that have helped or hindered their abilities.
It goes without saying that business technology and innovation plays such a vital role to the success of any modern office. With the fast pace of digital transformations that we’ve seen in recent years, it’s imperative to do your research first and make sure you have the right tech or strategy for the job in hand. Covering some of the best business tech and innovations for 2018 such as AI and that all important ‘focus on the people’, we’ve outlined some of the innovations that we are looking forward to in the coming year.
We’ve already touch on this in our blog article ‘Artificial assistants for business’ but this year is going to be huge for Artificial Intelligence (AI). It’s been on our radar for a few years now, but as the AI market for home automation is starting to explode, so too will the uses these devices can have in the workplace. They can help improve decision-making, be utilised for their scheduling capabilities and more than ever, help to shape an effective customer experience.
Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) has been transforming the way we interact with technology for many years. According to Forbes and Ericcson, projections for connected devices worldwide are set to rise to 28 billion by 2021, with 16 billion of these related to the IoT. Therefore businesses in 2018 will be focusing more on their ‘smart’ strategy and the detailed plan on how best to harness business benefits from the many connected ‘smart’ devices that are available, and how to leverage these existing systems to support their employee’s ability to work more efficiently.
Remote and flexible working
Many businesses such as the likes of Unilever already adopt a flexible and remote working policy, openly encouraging their employees to work from home or remotely on pre-agreed days. In fact, some brands like Buffer take this one step further, and have their entire global workforce employed on a remote working basis, with what they call a ‘distributed team’. Although this particular example is taking this working structure to the extreme, remote and flexible working arraignments are starting to become widely accepted and there are clear reasons for doing this. This approach can support a business’s ability to grow by both providing scope for a higher headcount than the confounds of an office can allow and by having the ability to tap into a wider pool of talent than what’s available on your doorstep. As employee demand for these type of working arrangements increase in line with the business’s need to facilitate sustainable growth, it will lead to an explosion of remote and flexible working solutions this year. This will almost certainly increase demand for tools such as live chat platforms and virtual conferencing, which continue to make remote workforces and home working more feasible.
To echo efforts that have been made in recent years with the client-centric approach, innovative businesses are now starting to see the benefits of focusing on their employees, with an inside-out strategy to achieve greater efficiency and drive business improvements. In fact, building a workplace culture that supports innovation and encourages inspirational thinking is one of the best ways to ensure your teams are with you for the long haul, on a shared integrated vision.
Enterprise technologies and innovations as a whole, are going to experience some significant and rapid developments in the coming year. However, what remains to be seen are the ways that forward thinking businesses intend to utilise them to enhance their own internal and external offerings.