Five Strategies To Modernise Your Workplace And Create A Smart Office

Guest Blog our consultant managing the role
Author: Guest Blog
Posting date: 1/9/2019 10:37 AM
By Laura Gayle, BusinessWomanGuide.org

Smart technology is rapidly reshaping society. From cloud storage and mobile access to the internet of things and artificial intelligence, what was once regarded as science fiction is steadily becoming reality. In response, many employers are finding ways to modernize their workplaces by creating smart offices — not because it looks cool or is the trendy thing to do, but because they've discovered that doing so provides several tangible benefits.

New devices, apps, and AI-driven tools can not only make your office smarter, they also can position you for better marketing and sales efforts and provide competitive advantages in your industry. Additionally, creating a smart office offers both employees and customers a seamless experience and can attract talented millennial workers. Since millennials naturally adapt to tech innovations, they can assist in this transition to bring your company to the next level. Here are five strategies to modernise your workplace with smart tech.

1. Use cloud-based storage


Cloud-based storage offers both convenience and efficiency. Many among today's workforce probably don't even realise there was a time when offices were full of filing cabinets and computer equipment. Now that mobile access has been fully integrated into nearly all workplaces, much of the bulky equipment that previously took up space is disappearing. Filing cabinets? Paper files? Things of the past. Workers today don't typically spend hours every week filing stacks of papers because most documents are digitised and stored in the cloud. Other cloud-based technologies, such as remote workplaces and managed print services, are replacing old ways of conducting business.

Cloud technology has been a significant game-changer for the office environment. Not only are files and documents stored on the cloud, but also businesses are using cloud-based platforms as a part of their services or customer experiences. Think about how much “software as a service” (a model in which software is licensed and accessed remotely instead of being downloaded on a user’s computer) has become a standardised part of doing business. This is all thanks to cloud technology. As time moves forward, expect it to continue making a significant impact on the modern workplace and customer experience.

2. Invest in voice-activated devices


Various well-known gadgets found in "smart” homes or apartments are now making strides in the office setting, too. For example, voice-activated products such as Siri, Echo, Alexa, and Nest are commonly found in the workplace, adding functionality by offering a seamless user experience. Employees speak and the equipment automatically does what is asked — no more fiddling with equipment and trying to get things up and running manually. Voice-activated tech also allows workers to multitask and get things done faster, such as:

  • Coordinating and syncing calendars
  • Sending data requests
  • Ordering supplies
  • Reporting problems to the appropriate departments
  • Streamlining IT requests

These are just a handful of the many tasks voice-activated tech can perform. Businesses have steadily begun to include these types of products to make conference rooms even smarter. While this concept isn't mainstream in the office quite yet, it's not hard to image it becoming the norm within the next few years as this tech fully matures. Companies focused on modernising their workplaces are jumping on the proverbial bandwagon to get a leg up on the competition. These companies will be well ahead of the game when such tech initiatives do eventually become standard in the office.

3. Use tech to put offices in the comfort zone


As modern offices evolve into open-space floor plans, they've become more informal and far more flexible. With that concept in mind, offices today are more focused on comfort — a stark contrast to the drab cubicle environments of yesteryear. Shifting to the open-design work environment has been a challenge for many; however, businesses are finding ways to make this transition easier through smarter tech. Solutions they are integrating into their spaces include:


Smart tools not only appeal to workers because of their convenience and "coolness" factor; they also serve the practical purposes of enhancing comfort, personalising the remote experience, and even preventing repetitive stress injuries.

4. Integrate tech innovations to enhance the customer experience


Businesses are investing in smart technology, and customers are reaping the benefits. As companies streamline their operations and customer service processes, customers are widely experiencing the convenience and simplicity associated with smart tech. Here are some features they currently enjoy:

  • Chatbots for instant two-way communication
  • AI-based customer learning opportunitiesPersonalised insights and recommendations
  • Automation and custom ordering 
  • Cloud storage of customer information and preference history

Many industries are relying on artificial intelligence to improve their services. Businesses that do not offer this level of tech to customers will soon find themselves unable to meet heightened consumer expectations.

5. Use AI to gain a competitive advantage


Perhaps you don't want to go as far as microchipping your employees (yes, this is also a growing trend) or issuing them Segways, but there are a lot of other relatively new gadgets and AI-driven tools that can boost the "smartness" of your business — not to mention, amp up your competitive advantage. For instance, you can use AI to track the habits and patterns of your customer base while they spend time on your website and determine where they are in their "customer journey" with your brand. Armed with this information, you can customise their web experience, along with your communications to them. 

This personalisation can go a long way in your marketing efforts. After all, 80 percent of consumers say they are "more likely" to do business with a company that is able to give them a personalised experience. It's also important to know that research indicates customers want way more than basic personalisation. Using smart tech can easily help you bring things up to the next level.

Smart tech adds significant value to the modern office in many ways. It's unwise to purchase tech because it's trendy, but when integrated with purpose and vision, many company decision-makers find this investment offers significant benefits and, in the end, pays off nicely.

Harnham are the global leaders in Data & Analytics recruitment.

Take a look at our latest roles or get in touch with one of our expert consultants to learn more.  

Related blog & news

With over 10 years experience working solely in the Data & Analytics sector our consultants are able to offer detailed insights into the industry.

Visit our Blogs & News portal or check out the related posts below.

Why Should You Care About Data-Driven Marketing?

Marketing has been undergoing a fundamental change for some time. Elite marketers have been rethinking and reiterating their strategies, using increasingly sophisticated data.  and this trend has been further accelerated by the pandemic. Consumer behaviour has changed significantly since the pandemic began. Between March and August 2020, 70 per cent of consumers tried new digital shopping channels. Such significant changes have rendered many existing data models invalid. Data-driven marketing offers new insights into consumer behaviour and can render huge impacts in refining and enhancing marketing strategies.  So, why should you care about data-driven marketing?  Offers better clarity about the target audience  67 per cent of lead marketers agree data-based decisions beat gut instinct. Data-driven marketing allows marketers to quickly filter through data and determine the most relevant and accurate action to take. With the right data, marketers can assess customer data to predict behaviours, identify buying patterns and spot emerging trends.  Data-driven marketing can also reveal new channels and open up new avenues which organisations can use to engage with audiences and increase revenue.  Increases revenue  The last 18 months have been tough for businesses, yet through the use of data insight, marketing teams have been able to get ahead of emerging trends. Data-driven campaigns have pushed significant customer acquisition. Better insight into consumers and the channels they use enables organisations to improve their marketing strategy. Indeed, companies that deploy data-driven marketing are six times more likely to remain profitable year-over-year, and 78 per cent of organisations agree that data-driven marketing increases customer acquisition. Personalisation In the modern world, advertising is everywhere, and it is endless; consumers see it on their phone, their TV and even on their way to work. Without target advertising campaigns, organisations risk aggravating consumers. 74 per cent of customers already feel frustrated by seeing irrelevant content from brands. To stand out, marketing channels have become more complex. Marketers need to remain creative to capture consumers attention and data driven marketing can help achieve this. Data-driven marketing allows businesses to target specific demographics and user groups at an individual level. By targeting specific user groups at an individual level, marketers are able to use personalised marketing campaigns to build stronger and more meaningful connections with potential customers. With individual customer information, brands can segment a target market and ensure personalised messages are falling into the right place. Data-driven marketing is also able to identify potential customer triggers and create a holistic view of the target audience. This style of personalised marketing campaign makes for a more positive customer experience, and therefore represents excellent return on investment. Data has the potential to become an incredibly valuable resource in marketing. Data soothes the pain points which many marketers face on a day-to-day basis, and help teams to refine, enhance and improve strategy. In a post-pandemic world, data-driven marketing will undoubtedly be essential. To stay competitive, internal marketing and insight teams need to start taking notice of data-driven marketing.  Here at Harnham, we understand the importance of data-driven marketing to determined campaigns and guide decisions. So, if you’re looking for your next opportunity or to build your Marketing & Insights team, we can help. Take a look at our latest opportunities or get in touch with one of our expert consultants to find out more.  

Three Ways Data Impacts The Customer Experience

In 2019, over 50 per cent of companies had adopted Big Data, with a further 38 per cent citing that they would be investing in it in the future. As it stands, we can assume that now, at least three-quarters of businesses will have invested in Big Data capabilities. By 2022, the annual revenue from the global big data and business analytics market is expected to reach $274.3 billion.  The lucrative nature of this industry stems from a recognition by many companies that it’s no longer good enough to guess what customers might want or need from your product or service, but to have hard evidence to back up your choices. Not only does this make for much happier, more satisfied customers, but it undoubtedly improves the bottom line.  Here are three examples which showcase how Data can positively impact the customer experience: 1. Create a more intuitive website journey From heatmapping the areas of interest (or disinterest) on your website through eye movement or mouse tracking to traffic analysis through tools such as Google Analytics, Data can give you both real-time and overall information about the success of your website.  You can analyse areas of the website where consumers ‘linger’ or click through, such as content pieces, links or assets, which proves to give added value or entice them to learn more about your business. You can also see areas where little to no activity happens, allowing you to create a new, perhaps more engaging, strategy.  The use of data for website ensures your get the design and content right in less time. The cost of redesigning a website can be a hefty cost for any business. The fewer times a website needs chopping and changing, the more cost-effective it will be, not forgetting to mention a much smoother and more efficient process for customers. 2. Building loyalty through personalisation In a report featured in Forbes by The Harris Poll, 76 per cent of Americans are more likely to complete a purchase if the customer journey has been personalised to them, their needs and wants. The story is similar in the UK, 80 per cent of companies report seeing an uplift after employing personalisation tactics.  However, personalisation must go one step further than just addressing a person by name in an email nowadays. It means targeting consumers with specific and relevant ads that actually take their interest instead of bombarding them with a scattergun approach, as well as looking at areas such as location-specific targeting and device optimised outreach. This can be made possible by combining marketing data, such as brand interactions, combined with sales data, previous purchases, and customer service data, the feedback given. These aspects allow you to create an in-depth and meaningful customer journey map, help you understand what turns specific consumers on, or off, and ensures your marketing messages and outreach are pertinent.  3. Be prepared for problems before they occur Data can give incredible insight into what’s working currently for a business but, arguably, its strengths lie in giving accurate understanding into the potential risks or problems that are likely to occur in the future.  According to Clarion Tech, there are seven areas in which Data can play a crucial role in minimising risk, errors or issues for a vast range of businesses. From making sense of unused business data to making companies proactive instead of reactive, minimising misleading forecasts to diminishing customer service challenges, data can be the solution to a wealth of problems.  Not only do these kinds of errors leave a bitter taste in the mouths of customers who may struggle to revisit your business after a bad experience, but they can negatively affect your bottom line too. Nipping them in the bud before they happen is an incredible card to have to hand, and one that could be the saviour of your business.  To learn more about how working with a Data & Analytics specialist could help bolster the success of your business, contact our team or, if you're looking for your next opportunity, check out our latest roles. 

RELATED Jobs

recently viewed jobs