This article is part of Raydiant’s new Future of Workspace Series which features interviews with a wide range of professionals and thought leaders to learn more about the future of office space and how the workplace experience will evolve.
The following is an interview we recently had with Pavel Stepanov, CEO of Virtudesk
What will be the 3 biggest lasting changes to the workplace caused by COVID?
Given the effects of the pandemic all over the world, the three biggest lasting changes to the workplace caused by Covid19 include transitioning to remote work, adapting to the hybrid work model, and improving digital strategies. Many US employees lost their jobs as businesses needed to follow protocols and guidelines to continue their operations safely – transitioning all of us to remote work. With traditional business operations shut down, businesses were forced to adapt and explore new ways of financially surviving. They turned to new apps, software, and digital channels that would help them with business operations. For example, many companies adopted virtual events and e-commerce, when they never did before, because they were forced to survive. However, now we see the benefits that came from this forced adoption. Along with the rise of remote work, the hybrid work model was proposed to lessen the further unemployment and mental stress caused by the crisis which is now being utilized by a lot of businesses, because they see improved employee satisfaction, retention, and productivity – and reduced operating costs.
What workplace technologies will be the most important in the years ahead?
The workplace technologies that will be most important in the years ahead include productivity trackers, online meeting apps, and AI technology/automation apps. With remote work or the hybrid-work model, you will have little to no physical contact with your employees. Therefore, you must have a time tracking tool to monitor their attendance and productivity. This also calls for more online meetings in order to stay connected and updated on projects. So, online meeting and communication apps will continue to be high in demand. AI technology and automation tools will become more robust and become a part of every business if it hasn’t already. These types of tools increase business productivity and efficiency and are vital to continue business operations.
What will the workplace of the future look like?
The future of the workplace will look largely like remote work, or a hybrid-work model. Since covid is still present, businesses will still continue with their safety protocols and procedures, and encourage or require remote work for their employees. We are even seeing companies already allowing their employees to choose between remote or in-office work. This leads to the next point. Employees will also expect to be more demanding in receiving greater workplace flexibility in terms of their schedule and where they want to work. Because remote work enables employees to ultimately work anywhere in the world (as long as they have an Internet connection), employers will have to adapt to their employees’ changing needs.
What can organizations do to prepare for this new future?
In order to be prepared for this future workplace, organizations will have to be more flexible with employee demands, needs, and wants due to the undeniable benefits of both remote and hybrid-work models. People have learned to work smarter not harder to survive the pandemic. Businesses also have to embrace the changes in technology because they will not be able to otherwise move forward. Organizations have to hire forward-thinking individuals who are willing to adapt to improved ways of doing business. Companies have to start building teams who are flexible and open for change, so they will not be left behind or easily backed down by challenges.