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Blog | A day in the Data-enabled Workplace

Embedded workplace sensors are becoming economically feasible in many office settings. They will drive higher workplace utilization and provide a variety of benefits of occupants.

COWORKR WHITE PAPER

How Embedded Sensors will Transform Workplace Performance, Employee Engagement, and Facility Management

CoWorkr’s recent white paper highlights the data collection opportunity within offices, summarizes the types of data that can be collected, and summarizes the current and future opportunities to put these data to work.

 

But, what does this mean for a worker, in the hustle and bustle of a work day? In this blog post, we’d like to walk through a typical day and highlight how sensors and the data they collect will help workers be more productive, collaborative and successful.

Pick your office for the day

7 am; Before work begins

Embedded sensors will deliver value to workers before they arrive. Instead of working in the same office every day, you will be able to check the current occupancy levels and office reservations for the day. Then, you’ll select which office location to use based on your preference and availability. The selection could be based on a variety of factors, such as your clients meetings in a specific part of town or social plans after the work day ends.

Pick your desk

9 am; Upon arrival

Once you have arrived at the selected office, the next step is to find the right place to set up shop for the day. This could be based on your own historic or selected preferences: you’ve already set your profile to note that you like lots of natural light and want to be close to the coffee bar. Additionally, you need a quiet spot to focus, so you’re routed to a perfect spot for the day. As you come to this office more and more, you receive recommendations for specific spots that you enjoyed in past visits. And, any spots you didn’t like won’t be suggested to you anymore.

Getting your lunch delivered

Noon

In many office settings, a lunch delivery vendor puts all the lunches in a cafeteria or galley. But you’re in the middle of a productive period and don’t want to disrupt your flow to grab lunch. So that it doesn’t get cold or accidentally picked up by someone else, the food vendor can use real-time location data to send it up to your work station.

Modifying your surroundings

2 pm: Prep for a group meeting

When it’s time for a group meeting, having real-time occupancy data helps you select a space to congregate. Securing a location with a large white board and a projector could be difficult without easy-to-access data on conference room use and equipment in each space. Selecting the right space is a snap because all the metadata about each conference room is accessible online. Additionally, you notice that a few of the participants also enjoy natural light so your conference room options are ranked by those with lots of windows. You find a nearby space that was reserved by isn’t being used and the meeting begins. Before the meeting ends, you are able to rate the space and save it to your preferences. This way, it will be easy to find next time you have a meeting and the facility managers will know that you liked the space.

After the meeting, you look at recommendations for a new spot to work. By selecting a few preferences: independent work as the type, quiet and non-distracting for the preferred setting, you’re routed to a new location that will allow you to focus. A building that can learn your preferences will be able to help you remain productive - even if you are too busy to think about it!

How this impacts Executives and Facility Managers

Aggregated across many employees and over many weeks, data that is passively collected will provide significant value to the organization: reducing the cost of the facility and helping the organization spend its real estate dollars wisely. For example, the facility team may order offices to be cleaned based on how much they are used and their current condition, rather than a recurring schedule. In addition, capital projects can be planned using data about popular workstation types or high-demand locations within the building. Facility staff also could modify large conference rooms into more small spaces based on actual use data. Additionally, Real Estate Executives can use real occupancy data to plan office expansions and lease extensions.


The office with embedded workplace sensors and real-time, high resolution data is one that will provide workers and occupants with ongoing benefits every day. Smart office technology makes sense to all parties involved in the real estate equation, but may be most beneficial to the employees themselves.