It’s no secret that collaboration is the lifeblood of the modern workplace, but do you know how to marry teamwork and technology to enable seamless collaboration in your business? It’s hard to say exactly what the workplace will look like five or 10 years from now, but collaborative tech will be at the forefront of scalability, growth, and long-term success for most businesses.
Join the Collaborative Tech Movement
Today’s businesses need collaborative workspaces to stay creative and competitive. Collaborative technology is not just a passing trend—it’s become the driving force of human interaction in the workspace. Case in point: Business spending on video collaboration tools and technology has nearly doubled in the last few years, rising from a 10 percent average spend to 18 percent. Video conferencing, telepresence, and mobile technology have enabled seamless teamwork from locations across the world.
By 2020, millennials will form about 50 percent of the global workforce, and their tech-savvy philosophy will help create a fully mobile and collaborative work environment, where most companies embrace bring your own device (BYOD) practices and employees collaborate remotely everyday with little pre-planning.
Remote work is already on the rise. Some business leaders predict that up to 75 percent of their workforce will complete their work from somewhere other than a conventional office by 2020. But “mobile” or “remote” doesn’t have to mean isolated. Thanks to advanced video conferencing technology, the cloud, and social networking for business, people enjoy collaboration with co-workers immediately and seamlessly—regardless of location. The investment in HD audio and video collaborative tools is redefining the traditional workspace, leading not just to a more open and shared space within a traditional corporate office setting, but one that extends beyond the organization’s four walls to wherever employees happen to be.
Embrace the Best Collaborative Tools: Now and Later
Different forms of collaborative technology work better for different companies. Your business may benefit from video conferencing because you have employees and partners spread across five states. Another organization may streamline product development through virtual whiteboard apps, and still a third may combine the technology to brainstorm on virtual whiteboards over a video conferencing connection. Understanding which option—or options—is best for your organization will help your brand get the most from its collaborative technology investment.
Some of the technologies currently contributing to more collaborative workplaces include:
• Video conferencing (and video conferencing as a service – VCaaS)
• Intelligent apps
• File-sharing technology and the cloud
• Human resources and learning management enterprise systems
• Online social communities
Predictions for the future of collaboration and technology in the workplace include:
• Open floorplan offices with sound-proofed spaces designed specifically for phone use
• Office Internet of Things (IoT) for full connectivity
• A focus on technology-enabled human interaction between employees
• Virtual technologies for immersive collaboration
Open Spaces Help Create Collaborative Minds
The future of work focuses on creating open spaces for employees, eliminating the cubicle structure that has been on its way out for the last decade, and encouraging on-the-fly brainstorming and creativity. The most successful businesses will capitalize on the newest collaborative technologies as they hit the market, working closely with Chief Information Officers (CIOs) and Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) to ensure seamless adoption and network security. The next generation of employees will enter the workplace expecting BYOD, video conferencing, and collaboration through the cloud. Modern workplaces must prepare for the future and deliver on these expectations to stay valuable and viable in the next few years.
As for the workplace of 2030? There seems to be no end to the ways employees will work together, using technology to encourage and enable human interaction. Are you ready?