The future of workplace experience with Envoy: Welcome employees back to the office with confidence

This week on our ‘Future of Workplace Experience’ series, we discussed with Justin Bullock, Head of Sales at Envoy on their phased return to the office and how Envoy Protect can help enable a safe work environment to bring employees back to the office with confidence. Check out our interview and key takeaways below.


Planning for a phased return with capacity limits

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  • Companies are planning shifts or phases of return: Currently Envoy is deployed in about 14,000 offices and 84 countries, so we’re getting a lot of feedback from our customers that helps guide us to create the solution that can ensure a safe return to the workplace.
  • Capacity limits vs office layouts: Companies need to think about what capacity limits for each phase, based on social distancing guidelines and the amount of spaces they have, and how will the office layouts change.

Ensure a safe return with Envoy Protect

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  • Return to work requires a seamless connection of the physical and virtual workplaces: For a long time Envoy has been an expert in how humans enter and interact with your physical workplace, with Envoy Protect it is a slight shift to focus on how do we bring our employees back to work safely and how do we manage that process?
  • Designed to bring employees back to the office with confidence: The solution focuses on some key areas such as employee screening, touchless workflow, capacity management functionality.

Meetings in the new normal

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  • Capacity management with meeting rooms: Smaller spaces like 1 or 2-person pods will be off limits in the first phase for hygiene purposes. Capacity management is not just for your building, it can be for the rooms as well by limiting the availability of meeting rooms to minimize physical interactions between employees.
  • Eliminate zombie meetings with data insights: After a few months of usage at Envoy HQ, we discovered 25% of our scheduled meetings didn’t actually happen and realized we can save a good amount of money not having to build more meeting spaces.

Enabling a touchless environment with smart integrations

  • Envoy integrates with a keyless entry solution: I can open my front door of the office building, the door to my office, as well as the elevator all with a mobile app.
  • A slick visitor check-in experience with Aruba ClearPass: As soon as I sign in and sign the NDA within seconds on my mobile device, I would receive a unique Wi-Fi code to get on to the Internet. instead of just sitting there and waiting. It’s a super slick experience for me, but also a great layer of security for the company.

Accelerated workplace trends during Covid-19

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  • Mobile adoption in the workplace: We are seeing mobile app adoption skyrocket because of  employee-driven use cases. For example, employees can see all of their deliveries that come to the office. More recently, employees can schedule and book rooms via the mobile app. For Envoy, we always had a long term vision of creating more value for employees within your workplace.
  • Hot desking and desk hoteling: The concept of hot desk and desk hoteling is not new, but the popularity and need for it has accelerated dramatically during this period. Companies have to find new ways to use their spaces with social distancing in mind, so that is just naturally driving the need to have solutions that can help you.

Reimagining the workplace with design thinking: The future of workplace experience with IBM

As part of our ‘Future of Workplace Experience’ series, we discussed with Paul Russell, Business Development for Smart Buildings at IBM Tririga on design thinking for the workplace and the rise of community workspaces. Check out our interview and key takeaways below.

The rise of community workplaces

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  • New models emerging post-pandemic: In countries like the UK, where people might not travel like they used to, how do you make sure people can still physically meet people? One of the changes that you might see is more community workplaces appearing.
  • Close proximity technology in the workplace: With over 300,000 employees at IBM, it is easy to find out about people from different teams or regions through some of our tools currently in play, but what you can’t find out is if anyone is working close to you in the same building in real time.
  • Community workplaces in suburban areas: Instead of renting large corporate offices in the city, I think businesses, particularly in the UK and Europe, will start to regenerate traditional suburbs with community workplaces, creating new opportunities in suburban areas.

Addressing needs of younger members in the workforce

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While the older generation may prefer working from home, it’s also important to address the needs and concerns of the younger members in the team, who may prefer to have a physical office and the social experience of working in a city. Need to make sure they will have the same upwards trajectory and opportunities to grow inside of an organization.

Reimagining the workplace with design thinking

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  • Understanding user behavior with touchless technology: Moving forward, there will be more emphasis on how people move through their workspace through the use of technology and deeper understanding of how people want to use their workplace. It’s opening up new lessons to learn about how we can augment their experience by providing touchless technology and Kadence’s desk and room management software is a great example of that experience.
  • Design thinking in the workplace: We talked a lot about design thinking at IBM and if we want to change someone’s behavior, there needs to be sufficient motivation, efficient ability and a prompt.
  • Enabling contact tracing: With the contact tracing example, we are changing people’s behavior because we want them to feel safe in the workplace and they’re motivated to do this because they want to stay healthy. People need to understand the value exchange and it needs to benefit employees in some way.

The future of workplace experience with MAPP: Embracing a new way of working

“The office has a future – it is just going to look different and needs to do something different than it has been in the past.” 

This week on our ‘Future of Workplace Experience’ series, we discussed with Founder and CEO of MAPP, Nigel Mapp on rethinking the purposing of offices and using it as a tool to retain the best talent. Check out our interview and key takeaways below.

Employee safety and assurance: The number one priority

Things are going to look very different when we return and you can expect a number of control measures in place at MAPP managed buildings, for example:

  • Getting employees safely to their office with signage and floor marks to keep people 2m apart
  • Queuing systems in place with designated one lift up and one down
  • Using fire escapes stairwell as one way system for going down
  • Touchless measures by disabling building entrance barriers

Embracing a new way of working

  • At MAPP, we ran a survey of how our workforce want to work post-pandemic and only a minority of our employees would like to return to office more than 3 days a week.
  • Offices will need to rediscover a purpose and there is a lot we can learn from retail. It will become a place where the brand exists and remain as a place to get people together and exchange ideas.
  • Companies will use space to project an image and for their people to belong, to collaborate, and share great thinking as opposed to housing rows and rows of workstations.
  • Offices might also start to become seen as a ‘perk’ to retaining talents as everybody wants to work in a great space. We can expect companies to occupy less space and invest in quality and infrastructure.

Planning for your office reopening? Download our guide below to discover 10 top tips on how to plan your workspace more efficiently with technology and data.

The future of workplace experience with Ricoh: Preparing for your office reopening

This week on our ‘Future of Workplace Experience’ series, we are delighted to have Simone Fenton-Jarvis, Workplace Services Consultation Director at Ricoh to explore how companies can prepare for their office reopening and why it is important to trust your employees. Check out our interview and key takeaways below.

Approach future workplace design with a people-centric attitude

  • It’s important to understand the purpose and role of your office, incorporating your employees’ work styles and culture to approach your future workplace design and policies.
  • Companies should provide clear and sound guidance about the data they are collecting for safety measures. For example, we will start seeing thermal temperature scanners being deployed at building entrances and workplaces. As long as companies are being transparent with the use of data, people will become more accepting – it’s important to build trust and confidence with your employees.

Preparing for your office reopening

  • Expect to see more on-demand bookable spaces with controlled measures such as enhanced airflow, sanitizing stations and touchless solutions like Kadence to understand which spaces have been used and who has been using them.
  • Make sure you have a concrete plan in place for cleaning and sanitizing shared spaces more frequently going forward to ensure employees’ health and safety, and to reduce overall risk for your business.
  • “Office is always open, come back only if you want to” – Employees will not have the same comfort level about returning to an office environment. Office reopening should be a gradual process and should not be compulsory at the start to make sure employees only come back when they are ready.

Planning for your office reopening? Download our guide below to discover 10 top tips on how to manage your desks and workspaces more efficiently with technology and data.