Last year, global workspace specialists Instant Offices predicted that a tech breakthrough in the commercial real estate industry would be one of the most significant workplace changes to come about in a post-Covid world. They have discovered first hand how sectors are using technology to make the workplace safer and more hygienic.
As the pandemic has affected all aspects of our lives, the need for a new way of working is also affected. With that in mind, Instant Offices has identified the top seven Proptech trends that aims to keep employee safe in a post-COVID office :
- High tech wellness checks – Employees must be screened for symptoms before entering their workplace to ensure that they aren’t contagious. Many teams now complete a quick health survey via a mobile app on their way into the office so that they can be effectively screened before arrival.
- Touch- free & Voice enabled tech – Covid-19 has caused a surge in voice technology adoption. According to an Adobe Voice Survey, 86 per centof people said that voice tech would make the office more sanitary, while 77 per cent expected to use this tech more frequently in the next year. Movement-activated doors allow workers to enter and exit spaces without touching anything. Voice-enabled devices and appliances help to reduce physical contact dramatically.
- Air Filtration- Around 75 per cent of the air inside an office is recirculated indoor air? Businesses can effectively improve air quality and cleanliness at work by properly installing (and maintaining) their existing HVAC and filtration systems. However, some are going a step further with cutting-edge innovations like UV light purification technology.
- Social Distancing Sensors – Office layouts are changing to accommodate social distancing, with one-way circulation patterns in the hallways and workstations spaced further apart. For example, sensors can monitor occupancy and send alerts when too many people are together in a space.
- Automated Cleaning – From UV light treatments to self-cleaning surfaces for high-traffic points around the office, companies now have a wealth of germ-busting technology to choose from. A study by AJIC, found that high-energy UVC light reduced live Coronavirus on laboratory surfaces by 7 per cent in just 30 seconds.
- Enhanced Cybersecurity – While much of the new tech we’ve mentioned aims to mitigate the threat of infection, other innovations are addressing the increased security risk that comes with remote working. According to Gartner, 52 per cent of compliance leaders in 2020 said that third party cybersecurity breaches were their biggest concern due to remote work since the Covid outbreak.
- Remote Collaboration Platforms – Statista reported that between Q4 2019 and March 2020, the UK saw a 24 per centincrease in Hangouts Meet downloads, a 20 per cent increase in Zoom downloads and a 13 per cent increase in Microsoft Teams downloads. Businesses are adapting by implementing systems where employees can reserve a conference room or desk space quickly and easily online.
“For one of our managed offices in Singapore, we delivered a self-learning solution that optimises and regulates internal air conditioning using IOT sensors,” commented John Williams, head of marketing at The Instant Group. “The system allows real-time information around temperature, CO2, VOC’s and humidity while optimising performance and power consumption. This has proven to deliver savings of between 20 and 38 per cent for the HVAC electrical consumption alone. In the same office, we installed a live moss wall and a 14-metre wall of 3,200 live plants that connects all three floors. This ‘office green lung’ doesn’t just look impressive, but also oxygenates the office environment.”