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  • Top Five Workplace Tech Trends for 2024

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Patrick Isitt
Content Manager
Content specialist in office design and build.
  • Despite the prevailing inflationary pressures and general economic uncertainty, many businesses are investing in workplace technology as it continues to shape new ways of working and interactions within the office in 2024 and beyond.

    A recent JLL Survey on Global Real Estate Technology revealed that 91% of businesses are willing to pay a premium for tech-enabled offices, with the view that innovative workplace technology can play a key role in driving productivity, improving business operations and significantly reducing short-term and long-term costs.

    Tech is developing at a fast pace to support hybrid working to enable flexible and efficient communication, with innovations in automation, artificial intelligence and AV enhancing office experiences and output. Here, we set out the top five tech trends we expect to impact the workplace in 2024.

  • Smart, sustainable workplaces

    Global sustainability goals will undoubtedly continue to be the catalyst for global change in 2024, and the real estate industry, along with its occupiers, must play its part in supporting Net Zero targets. Technological innovations are key to improving the ESG performance of workplaces – supporting companies’ decarbonisation efforts and emission management which greatly reduces their impact on the environment.

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  • The use of motion sensors and smart tech devices in offices will be a continued trend, with JLL’s survey claiming that 45% of occupiers plan to adopt energy and emissions management technology over the next 12 months. This tech is pivotal in helping businesses optimise heating, cooling and electricity to deliver significant cost savings and sustainability gains.

    Passive technology can also have a massive impact on indoor environmental quality, or IEQ. Through early-stage design and architectural interventions, rather than later-stage engineering interventions, workplace interiors can be made more sustainable and amenable for their occupants. For example, building size, height and orientation, and exposure to sunlight and prevailing winds, can help to enhance internal light levels, ventilation and thermal comfort. Crucially, passive strategies also reduce the maintenance, cost and energy involved in major heating, cooling and lighting systems.

  • Enhancing the AV experience

    Audiovisual (AV) technology exploded into the public consciousness during the pandemic, facilitating the remote working model people worldwide were forced to adopt. Currently valued at over £165 billion, audiovisual tech is anticipated to reach £270 billion by 2026, with ongoing innovations set to further enhance the overall AV experience.

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  • Employees now expect to be able to work seamlessly from anywhere on any device, and businesses are seeking to match that demand. Data from Envoy suggests that 40% of workplace leaders invested more in conferencing technology last year, so it’s likely we’ll continue to see new software-agnostic systems being developed. This will mean businesses can use multiple and diverse devices across different locations and meeting rooms, increasing opportunities for collaboration.

    AV screens are improving, too, with developments in organic light-emitting diode (OLED) technology further transforming the user experience. Significantly thinner and more sophisticated than standard LEDs, OLEDs light up using organic electroluminescent layers. Delivering sharper, brighter and better picture quality, OLED-powered displays will bring greater clarity – and lower energy consumption – to video conferencing suites across the corporate world.

  • Data-driven workplace decisions

    With flexible working and hybrid models becoming the norm in the post-Covid landscape, workplace utilisation is an increasing priority for businesses. With many employees working on site three or four days a week, maintaining clear visibility of ‘who’s in when’ is key to preventing overcrowding and maximising productivity.

    Data from XY Sense’s report on workplace utilisation revealed that 36% of work zones are never occupied, while areas that typically require more real estate, such as large conference rooms and break-out spaces, are rarely utilised throughout the day.

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  • Scheduling software and tech solutions are designed to support flexible working policies and enable greater fluidity in resource management. Such tools help employers monitor staff movements, providing certainty in space allocation and availability. Often integrating with standard programmes, like Microsoft Office, these tech innovations make for a smoother on-site experience and facilitate collaboration without congestion.

    Systems like Condeco also enable employees to book meeting rooms and desks remotely via mobile apps, which means they can plan their time on-site and make strategic decisions about the spaces they occupy. As a result, the utilisation of the workspace becomes optimised, increasing the potential for productive interaction and overall improvements in performance.

  • AI advancements

    2023 was a monumental year in the world of AI, and while the discourse on how we might regulate its use in the future continues, it’s already having a significant impact on the workplace in many ways.

    Given the right conditions, UK AI adoption could rise to 22.7% of all businesses by 2025, and 35.8% by 2040. The implication of this increase is an expansion of smart technology, which refers to the use of AI, big data and machine learning to endow objects with cognitive awareness. In short, empowering inanimate ‘things’ to perform human activities.

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  • In the workplace, examples of these innovations include smart thermostats, lights and coffeemakers, which discharge their key functions automatically in response to ambient conditions (temperature, occupancy levels) or pre-learned personalised requirements (decaf, milk).

    Generative AI is also being integrated into businesses to perform more advanced operations. For example, chatbots and avatars are increasingly being deployed in customer services to handle basic customer interactions and questions. Additionally, generative AI will continue to shape the future of work by empowering people with the tools to progress their careers, which has the potential to reduce barriers to learning and ultimately create a more diverse workplace in the years to come.

  • Augmented and Virtual Reality

    AR and VR technologies are poised to have a significant impact the workplace in 2024 and beyond, with its capabilities now largely accessible and affordable for businesses around the world. In sectors like architecture and product design, these technologies can enable real-time 3D modeling and prototyping, as well as offer visualisation of the final product in a virtual space before committing to physical prototypes.

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  • More generally, augmented and virtual reality technologies can facilitate day-to-day activities in the workplace, improving the efficiency of crucial processes such as employee training and virtual collaboration – both of which are key drivers in employee engagement and productivity. Depending on the industry, there may be specific regulations and compliance requirements related to AR and VR technologies, so it’s important to stay on top of how this trend develops over the next 12 months or so.

  • Technology is being embraced by businesses in many ways so there will be plenty of opportunities for new tech to elevate functionality and efficiency in our workplaces. This selection of technology is a consideration of some of the products and software that we are aware of and maybe game-changing in 2024.

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