New Views on How Technology Helps Create Intelligent and Productive Workplaces

JLL’s Ed Nolan and Antonia Cardone from Cushman & Wakefield were part of a field of experts lending their thoughts at CRE.tech LIVE in Chicago. Image courtesy of cre.tech.

On May 25th Chicago welcomed CRE.tech LIVE in partnership with JLL and MetaProp NYC to exchange views on how “Technology is Helping Create Intelligent and Productive Workplaces.” This half-day seminar featured executives from the architectural/design community, corporate real estate, technology consulting companies and office management services discussing three key arenas that every contemporary office planner explores:

  • Integration of New Technology into the Workplace
  • Providing the Workplace with an IT Backbone
  • On-Demand Workplace Management

With the latest wave of IoT (Internet of Things), the flexible workplace has gained stronger momentum through the impact of IT as the technological interface is no longer the definer of space, but it’s facilitator. Timothy Swanson of CannonDesign explained as people begin to self-discover new work typologies, technology is the overlap for human space. “Human engagement is most successful when radically engaged (therefore) resulting in higher employee retention.”

Dylan McCory with SiteREADY contributed that 59% of millennials consider a state-of-art facility important to them when considering a job. “Currently 27% of companies don’t have a formal strategy around workplace technology and by 2030, “30% of corporate real estate will be flexspace”.  Adding, the strength of your IT infrastructure impacts the ability to support change and break change if necessary in moving forward. Simultaneously the importance of tracking change through data has greatly emerged however Andrew Maier of WIN connectivity acknowledged “data is only powerful if you actually do something with it”.  Likewise, panelists conferred the significance in accurately translating data, opposed to just strictly administrating it.

Categorizing how technology supports movement, Ed Nolan with JLL, explained “the infrastructure in a silent manner, is a collection of motions through data. When translated on behalf, it can influence better decisions in managing space.” Antonia Cardone of Cushman & Wakefield described how “use and activity” are some of the common demands that technology needs to answer along with IT’s role in bridging (employee) presence within the organization.

With space serving as a central data point for collective information, CBRE’s Brad Serot observed “many believe that if they create the environment — open bench seating and collaborative rooms — that they’ve done the work and they can check the box. However, it’s the psychology and implementation of changing behavior(s) which far outweigh just the environment that you’re in.” Essentially it has become the cultural shift in enabling choice.

As the onset of more technologies are adapted into the workplace both physically and virtually, the employment of stronger communication and improved workflows have emerged.  Access to spaces outside of the organization along with the number of choices within an organization, has greatly shifted workplace planning. Nila R. Leiserowitz of Gensler discussed the importance for opportunities to connect with the experience of space by means of “tech and touch”. Furthermore, Leiserowitz commented “through technology, choice and the right environment, employees can do their best to drive innovation along with success for the company. Choice demonstrates respect, builds trust and helps to retain talent.”

Looking for more CRE insights? Join CRE.tech LIVE in NYC this Thursday July 27th to examine the latest technologies and best practices that leading commercial brokers are adopting to impress picky clients and fill vacancies faster. PERK: Work Design readers can enjoy a 30% discount on tickets when using the code: WDM30 at registration. Click here for more details.

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