News portals, blogs, tech enthusiasts and industry commenters are keen to have their thoughts heard on what’s set to be the next big thing in 2014. Here at OfficingToday, we’re listening and watching intently. But what really matters to us is how these tech predictions could impact business centres, for better or worse.
One set of tech predictions that caught our eye comes from WorkSnug. We’ve picked out 3 of them that we think are worth watching in 2014, and how they might influence the way you do business.
What do you think? Are these tech trends set to make a splash in 2014 – or is there something bigger and more impactful that’s coming our way? As ever, do let us know.
1. BYOD Boom
Recent stats by Gartner predicted that 38% of companies will stop providing devices to workers by 2016 and half will mandate Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) by 2017. We’ve discussed many angles of BYOD here on OT, ranging from the costs of rolling out new policies to the potential “commercial suicide” associated with ignoring BYOD. The plain fact is, it’s not going away – and with mobile technology only set to get better, lighter, cheaper and more powerful, BYOD could become the norm sooner than we think.
WorkSnug says that businesses without BYOD policies “had better start writing them” – and that’s sound advice. As a business centre, there are certain security concerns you should consider if your clients are going to connect personal devices to your network. You should also think about compatibility – how will your systems work with so many different devices and software? Will your Internet bandwidth cope? Is your Wi-Fi secure? Do you have someone ‘in the know’ on standby who has knowledge of all these different devices? If not, do you have it written into your terms?
So many things to consider. But like all things tech related, the opportunities abound.
2. Meetings Go Virtual
The question of how meetings will take place in the future is a hot topic in the world of flexible workspace. Caleb Parker, CEO of Meetingrooms.com, is preparing to launch a system to help operators sell their vacant space online, quickly and securely.
But will clients always opt for physical meeting space? In the not-too-distant-future, meetings could be smaller, quicker and virtual. As WorkSnug puts it, an increase in mobile working creates more nimble businesses that can react quickly with impromptu meetings. The idea is that smaller teams will get together for quick meetings in informal spaces – which could be coffee shops, hotel lobbies or your business centre. And when that doesn’t happen, firms will hold virtual meetings with video calls.
Business centres that offer a sound Internet connection will fare better at keeping those video link-ups and ‘virtual’ meetings in-house, and centres with top-notch video conferencing tech will keep the corporates happy. For everyone else, a laptop or iPad, software like Skype and a solid Wi-Fi connection will work just as well.
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3. It’s All About the Network
With 4G hitting the mainstream and an abundance of constantly-evolving mobile devices, we’re in for some pretty powerful mobile productivity in 2014. Business centre clients could become ever more agile this year. With the apps and cloud storage to make it happen, you may see much more movement in your offices as clients undertake more of their work on the go.
What do you think will take centre stage in 2014? Do you agree with these predictions? And how will it impact the business centre industry? Let us know.
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