As we return to a “new normal” world of working, the global workforce is located somewhere on the continuum between working in the office and at home. We are living in a time where hybrid working is King.

This situation poses several challenges for office-based employers, most notably, optimizing the workplace for hybrid working. The challenge involves creating flexible spaces where distancing and collaboration are both possible, including collaboration online through video conferencing.  

The landscape is forcing companies to reconsider the configuration of their workspace and even their technology ecosystem. One constant is an increase in investment in breakout areas and meeting spaces. A recent survey found office space planners are now allocating one collaboration space for every two desks. Before the pandemic, planners allotted one space for every six desks (1). 

So, what are the leading companies doing to optimize these collaboration spaces for their hybrid teams? 

Breakout and meeting space trends 

  1. HQ cameras and audio for their collaboration tech 

High-quality collaboration technology is a critical feature of high-quality online communication. The latest meeting room technology includes: 

  • Multiple HQ camera inputs 
  • Omnidirectional functionality 
  • Autoframing and automatic group framing 
  • Zoom functionality 
  • Digital signal processing, background noise, and echo cancelation 
  • Optimization for sound up to a range of 4-5m

In addition to the collaboration tech, there is an emergence of connected applications with whiteboards, sticky notes, AI transcription, live translation, and more. 

  1. Larger screens and more dual displays 

Companies seeking the most immersive online collaborative experience are installing larger and more powerful display systems and screens. Dual and multi-display systems are increasingly popular, with video walls also gaining traction. A benefit of video walls is their video processing can allow unlimited sources of content providing unparalleled flexibility in scrums, strategy sessions, and all hybrid meetings. 

In terms of size, screens are getting bigger and bigger, with 4k and 8k panels available up to 100 inches. Beyond that, Direct View LED wall displays provide the flexibility to create the most unique and immersive workspaces imaginable. Although expensive, Direct View LED offers large, high-quality screens that can be integrated into workspaces, on and around walls, with curves and corners, creating an unrivaled collaborative experience to support online and in-person meetings.   

  1. Touchless devices 

The pandemic has forced the world to adapt, and in workplace technology, there’s been a shift from touch screens to touchless devices. Smart Technology, including Smart TVs, enables collaborative spaces to be controlled by voice recognition. Wireless connectivity through Airplay on Chromecast increases presentation and control functionality, removing any necessity to connect to screens through cables. IR remote controls are no longer essential, with voice commands possible for all basic meeting room functionality. It all adds up to safe, functional, and low-maintenance collaborative spaces.  

  1. Remote management 

Enterprise businesses are continuing to look to managed service providers to support their in-house technology teams. Remote management technology enables this trend, with collaboration rooms configured with sophisticated online support tools, including remote video quality controls to support changes in bandwidth, usage, and connectivity and provide business continuity. 

Where DMS fit in

We provide video conferencing solutions to connect your business.

Our trusted partners are global market leaders for video conferencing, hardware, and logistics. We deliver tailored technology solutions, with speed and consistent quality, to our customers worldwide.

We are independent of all manufacturers and suppliers and perfectly positioned to support the process of solution identification, procurement, installation, and post-deployment support. 

 

(1) State of the Hybrid Workplace Report Q3 2021 – https://vergesense.com/resources/q3-2021-state-of-the-hybrid-workplace-data-report

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Ruairi is a Director at DMS, and brings 15 years of experience in the industry.
January 11th, 2022