Workplace Trends
March 26th, 2021

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5 Workplace Technology Trends

Today, the IT budget is a top priority for most companies. In fact, worldwide IT spending is expected to grow by 6.2% this year, according to Gartner.  But remember, that increase doesn’t necessarily get you far if you don’t have the budget.

So how can you control your IT costs without hurting your digital transformation strategy? Ultimately, it comes down to balancing the two priorities — carefully.

2020: The year IT strategy was flipped on its head

When you think back to early 2020, back before the pandemic, one of the most frequent barriers to digital transformation was legacy technology — or rather, those who resisted replacing it.

It was a dealbreaker if your users were hesitant to learn how to use new tools. Especially when the lack of buy-in came from the top. And any attempt to modernize your organization’s IT was almost certainly doomed if the decision makers didn’t believe the cost was justified.

In a perfect world, faulty, hard-to-update, disconnected systems would be replaced by cloud-based, cost-effective options that integrate quickly with your existing tech stack — and it would be easy to get every user on board.

Today, we’re getting closer to that reality. The aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic forced that door open, and now IT leaders have an opportunity to maintain the momentum.

Parting ways with legacy technology

With the unexpected shift to remote working, the pandemic’s impact on your budget may have accelerated transformation efforts you had planned for 2020 in some ways, while delaying them in others.

After all, COVID-19 has been a financial paradox for IT. While most businesses responded to the pandemic by investing in new technology, it also reduced the amount available for other digital initiatives.

The good news is that after a decline in IT spending last year as budget was reallocated for “mission critical” investments, forecasts show growth in the years ahead.

According to Gartner’s research, global IT spending is forecasted to increase in 2021, reaching nearly $3.9 trillion — and a significant amount of that is earmarked for enterprise software.

Even as the economy recovers, IT leaders are cautious about their spend on one hand, they're also optimistic about technology’s current — and future — role in the workplace.

Controlling IT costs during the pandemic

With recovery in mind, technology leaders need to be ready to deploy solutions to position their company as a forward-thinking leader in their space.

Pressure is mounting to stay ahead of the competition, adopt new technology, and stay agile according to The Wall Street Journal. But that doesn’t take off the pressure on spending.

These challenges are further complicated by a return to the office. Many IT leaders are understandably hesitant to commit budget in any specific area when circumstances are still somewhat unclear.

So, how do you manage IT spending in a world with a distributed, highly flexible workforce?

Map out your digital transformation today; be ready to scale tomorrow 

Shifting operations to enable connectedness across multiple locations, services, and platforms is a big job. Here’s how to provide employees with the technology that supports the needs of a dynamic workplace — and earns the support you need to make it a success.

Deploy easy-to-use solutions

After a tumultuous year, set people up for stability and success. You’ll need to be cautious, of course, but embrace the extent of your new role in organizational resiliency.

Your digital investments will prove worthwhile if employees can quickly find, choose, and book their desks — all from their mobile device. It saves time, cuts down on wasted space, and delivers high value to your employees and to the bottom line. 

Improve user adoption rates by choosing technology that's user friendly and works with the calendar and messaging apps they're comfortable using.

If an employee wants to reserve a quiet area to work on an important project, for instance, a mobile desk booking app makes it easy to explore available spaces and then book a space directly from their mobile device. 

Plus, they won't have to duplicate the reservation on their work calendar, because modern space booking systems will automatically add the information to their calendar.

Look for technology that's quick to integrate

New tools need to offer more than being easy to use. Focus your budget on addressing people's distinct needs. 

In order to realize the full benefit of your technology, you need solutions that integrate easily with your existing tech stack. That way, information can seamlessly flow between systems, providing you with actionable insights, more accurate data, and a better experience for end-users.

That includes tools that bring people back to work safely, provide more options within the workplace, enable in-person collaboration between colleagues, welcome visitors safely, and improve the overall experience people have in the office environment.

Self-service technology is one example of how IT leaders can simplify the workplace experience for employees. For instance, a room scheduling display that lets employees submit service requests improves the process for end-users as well as for your IT and facilities teams.

Make the business case for new investments

IT leaders work hard and sometimes it can be thankless work. It’s time to show off the value you bring to the organization and win over leaders and end-users.

Before jumping into a major purchase, make the business case and spell out the benefits to the bottom line. What changes can you make to optimize the workplace and how will a new solution help?

Speak the language of your stakeholders

Be prepared to answer all the important questions before the executives even ask.

As you know, emerging technology is nice, but a measurable return on investment is nicer. Connect your goals to the overall business initiatives. How can this new technology address your company's exact workplace needs?

Quantify the potential cost savings, show which improvements you can make, and show how easy it is to measure the impact of the investment.

Are leaders looking to maximize space or switch to hot desking? Consider desk booking software to help accommodate distributed employees. Show stakeholders how a desk booking app will help them easily transition to a more flexible seating arrangement.

Does your facility team need a quick way to understand how space is being used?  You can find insights from your data if you have conference room scheduling system. That way, they can plan out a reconfiguration based on the actual utilization data.

How can you get more returns for your IT spend?

Because it's both easy to use and manage, Teem helps IT leaders make the most out of their IT investments. Our user-friendly interface means you can spend less time on time-consuming training sessions and more time focusing on the future.

Employees will appreciate having the ability to reserve meeting rooms and book desks from their mobile device, a feature that supports the flexibility they've come to expect.

Workplace analytics are broken down in easily digestible dashboards and reports that can be customized, making it easy to run reports for company leaders and demonstrate the ROI of your purchasing decision.

See how we're simplifying the return to work today and supporting new ways of working in the future. Book a free demo.

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