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Top 5 predictions on the ‘workplace of the future’: Ecosystm

Top 5 predictions on the ‘workplace of the future’: Ecosystm

2020 will see the rise of 5G, employee experience, CPaaS, workplace analytics, and knowledge management solutions

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5G services will push organisations to rethink the networks next year while communications-platform-as-a-service (CPaaS) adoption is set to rise, according to new report.

Analyst firm Ecosystm’s report, ‘‘The Top 5 Workplace of the Future Trends for 2020', authored by Tim Sheedy and Audrey William, also indicated that employee experience (EX) will drive faster adoption of consumer collaboration tools; and HR KPIs will drive IT teams to invest in workplace analytics. Organisations will also wake up to the need for the right knowledge management solution.

“It’s estimated that people spend a third of their life at their workplaces. As the ‘experience economy’ becomes a reality, organisations will look beyond improving customer experience (CX) to enhancing employee experience (EX),” the report says.

Audrey William
Audrey William

“In fact, these priorities will come way before growing revenue or reducing costs. Retaining employees is important in today’s war for talent. Some organisations today have appointed chief experience officers and that demonstrates the importance they give to EX. 

“Technology should enable employees to do their work faster and seamlessly. Ultimately, workplace technology should drive employee productivity – and there is a proven link between employees being productive and employees being happy.” 

The report says organisations in mature economies already have EX as one of their top two business priorities, and Ecosystm expects to see more businesses across the globe prioritise EX over everything but CX.

“This comes with an understanding that offering a great customer and employee experience will lead to revenue growth, profit growth and lower costs,” 

In this Experience Economy, user experience will be paramount for workplace of the future technologies, the report notes. 

“If the experience is not right on for communication and collaboration solutions, employees will move on to the next best app for the right experience. The competition between the vendors across voice, video and collaboration is heightening.” 

Meanwhile, HR teams are ultimately responsible for driving improved EX, Ecosystm says. 

Tim Sheedy
Tim Sheedy

“And a happy employee is a productive employee – so an employee’s environment (managed by the operations or facilities team) and their technology (managed by the IT team) will have the biggest impact on driving employee satisfaction. To drive these outcomes, we will see these three teams work closer than they ever have - and not just on a project basis, but as a permanent arrangement,” the report finds. 

At the same time, investments in workplace analytics will increase, and there will be more collaboration between IT, HR and facilities management to drive best practices for employees, the report says, 

“Right now, there is very little collaboration between the three departments in driving better workplace practices. Workplace Analytics will help solve problems related to poor office practices around email overload, long work hours, absenteeism, usage of rooms and other facilities, employee discontent, as well as understand the overall trends on communications and collaboration solutions usage.” 

Additionally, 5G will come into its own in 2020 as more operators launch or expand their 5G coverage. 

“The unique capabilities of 5G to offer software-defined networks (SDNs) - designed specifically for organisations’ needs - will help businesses rethink the way they operate. They can stop thinking of their network as a physical place and start thinking of it as a set of capabilities and this takes work beyond designated physical addresses,” the report says. 

“Retailers will be able to offer complete retail environments from wherever they choose. Banks will be able to offer complete in-branch services from anywhere. Employees will be able to get access to all sorts of data and systems regardless of location. 5G is about much more than a faster network - the potential to transform  enterprise networks will see a huge rethink of the network and the way IT teams provide technology services to their employees.” 

Meanwhile, organisations will wake up to the need for the right knowledge management solution.

“IT have been guilty of dictating the knowledge management (KM) requirements and platforms to the business. Many customer teams are using tools that are inherently wrong for the job. Management is using tools that do not support their needs, and information workers are given generic platforms when they have specific needs. 

“2020 will see a fragmentation of the KM market as businesses start to buy based on customer and employee needs - not based on what the IT team dictates.” 

Lastly, 2020 will see a rise in CPaaS adoption, the report notes. 

“Cloud-based platforms that enable developers to add real-time communications features within the workflow of their own business applications will be the next big area of innovation in the unified communications space.

“Through the use of APIs, developers can embed communication capabilities into their existing business applications, without extra hardware or software costs. Developers can embed it directly into the cloud platform so the time to market is fast. Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS) will see greater adoption as more organisations look to build code and apply agile and DevOps methodologies.”

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Tags HRfuture of workCustomer ExperienceSDNworkplace of the future5Gemployee experienceCPaaSexperience economycollaborationknowledge management solutionsworkplace analyticsvoice and video

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