- Transformation into a data-enhanced business, with the ability to analyse the use and configuration of space, does not happen overnight.
- It is ultimately up to companies to define what they want to achieve with technology investment, and the value they believe it can add to people in the workplace.
- A digitally-enabled, in-building network management system simplifies and integrates complex technology to prepare your business to adapt to future needs.
Workspace transformation is a journey, not a destination. As space providers and occupiers start to become more results- and data-led, they can better understand how to increase productivity and efficiency in the workplace. By basing their decisions and policies on results-based metrics, businesses can create better experiences that employees demand while also achieving better productivity. Transformation into a data-enhanced business, with the ability to analyse the use and configuration of space for example, does not happen overnight. The IDC maturity model set out in the March 2021 InfoBrief enables companies to determine how they align to the stages of workplace technology adoption.
Let’s step back for a moment. If the maturity model culminates in being results-led, it begins by being self-led. At this point the onus is on the individual: people working from home who invest in the basic equipment they need to function. It’s distributed and somewhat chaotic. When those workers get back to the office, they are forced to interact with a variety of discrete systems to access the building, find a desk, book a meeting room and more. It’s barely possible to plan the working day without using two dozen different apps.
After a while, office space providers and occupiers try to impose some structure — this is the safety-led stage. While they are beginning to understand the potential of hybrid working, this is primarily a defensive phase, when priorities include safety, health, and compliance. The workspace becomes more secure, and technology is delivered competently, but neither the user experience nor the requirements occupiers rely on are a key consideration.
Then comes perhaps the most interesting stage, occupied by many, when the decisions are technology-led. Companies are investing significantly to get their office space fit for hybrid working and entice people back more systematically. But this process is generally inconsistent, with no holistic or strategic approach, no overarching plan, and not led by senior management. You might say this stage of the curve is environment-led and would benefit from forward-thinking consideration of how the technologies will work in conjunction.
Next comes the seamless stage. The organization realizes that the right results are not emerging from this new way of working. This is when technology for its own sake gives way to integration and cohesion, and a greater focus on the user experience. Most people see this as the most mature level, as they start to use predictive technology to manage demand and improve the experience. However, this stage still lacks the full understanding of how it impacts business outcomes.
While business leaders can now see useful data, they can’t yet derive actionable intelligence from it. This is what will unlock the ultimate prize: business-led, results-led workspaces. These are offices that adapt the experiences to what the organization and its employees need, supported by technology that drives smarter experiences across the portfolio and provides the insights that determine business success.
The technology maturity model is based on input from occupiers and flexible workspace providers. It is ultimately up to companies to define what they want to achieve with technology investment, and the value they believe it can add to people in the workplace. It’s not just about the office for the sake of the office, or technology investment for the sake of investing. It’s about being future ready and putting people at the core of a strategic technology deployment plan.
With a goal established, occupiers and providers alike can start to move through maturity stages. These are all valid (and necessary) milestones on the way to technology that is seamless, integrated and delivers a great user experience — which in turn leads to a space that produces valuable business outcomes.
To achieve a truly results-led technology approach requires a robust software and technology foundation. A digitally-enabled, in-building network management system simplifies and integrates complex technology in order to prepare your business to adapt to changing future market dynamics.
The maturity model is an excellent tool to establish how far a company has travelled and understand what’s next. All the building blocks are important, and the journey may be long, but it is the only road to success for workspace transformation that accommodates the constantly evolving future of work.