Companies that have open office plans are figuring out the best way to keep employees safe is to reconfigure their workspaces altogether.
Research has found that 39% of UK workers are nervous about their ability to physically distance from colleagues, and it is the responsibility of business leaders to guarantee that their staffers are comfortable in the workplace. The solution may be creating a smarter, more flexible workspace.
Modern technology can help companies accomplish this and ensure that when employees do come into the office, they are rewarded with an environment that is both secure and motivating.
For instance, the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) released new guidelines for building managers to ensure spaces are not using recirculated air to limit the spread of infections.
Many buildings will have less occupants with distancing measures in place, but this could cause a negative impact on energy consumptions. In many cases, there will be little adjustment to switch lights or heating systems off in unoccupied spaces.
The response to this has been mostly to allow employees to work from home. Could this signify the end of the office? While some claim yes, research has proven that remote working is not for everyone.
So how can a company find a balance between environmentally conscious choices and the benefit of offices? Integrating smart technology into spaces using sensors and IoT is the first step. Systems that can track energy consumption levels, seating arrangements, occupancy levels, air quality, and more guarantees that employees remain safe, without racking up a pricey energy bill.