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The progressions in today’s technologically advanced world are turning cubicles into coffee shops, centrally located offices into worldwide workspaces, and traditional board rooms into virtual collaboration spaces. Working from home brought the world by storm and now many companies are saying it will become part of their everyday culture, even after they’re allowed to return to the office. Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey, has already notified Twitter and Square employees that they are free to work from home indefinitely. Many other major corporations are expected to soon follow suit.

So what does this mean for office spaces? How do business owners keep their employees intertwined with company culture and maintain consistent communication? The answer is, we look towards virtual collaboration spaces within offices and how interactive technologies such as wearables and smart spaces can aid the transition to our new norm.

Getting the Job Done: On the Go

Technology is becoming smaller and more user friendly, and the ability for consumers to perform business-related tasks on the go is increasing. Smartwatches can carry various apps and project managers that enable the user to upload documents and communicate with teams without having to be seated at a desk. They can also seamlessly integrate with a user’s desktop and cell phone making it easy to share information between devices. Studies have shown that another benefit of being able to freely move around and even have a standing desk increases productivity and overall employee health.

Wearables produce benefits for users not only in their personal lives but professional lives as well. When consumers rely on a smartwatch to essentially be their personal assistant they need a display with a battery life that will extend beyond business hours, durability that can withstand the most active lifestyles, performance in every environment including rain and extreme heat, and sleek professional design. This is why E3 Displays has been trusted to design and develop wearable devices for today’s remote professionals.

Bringing worldwide organizations together in one place…virtually

As more organizations transition to flexible workspaces, meeting rooms are changing. They are evolving from the traditional “boardroom” style with a long centrally located table with 20+ chairs surrounding it, to “smart” rooms outfitted with collaborative desks, interactive displays, as well as video and phone conferencing systems. Interactive displays, including “smart boards”, allow individuals to share information from their personal device to a centralized display, contain touch technologies for drawing and writing, screen sharing so remote employees can view collaboration in real-time, and much more! Interactive displays can bring both physically present and remote workers together through high definition video conferencing, so teams are not limited by their location and can have highly engaging and collaborative meetings from all over the world.

Interactive displays also benefit more than just employees. By having a collaboration platform, companies can communicate and strategize with clients across the globe, therefore cutting down on unnecessary travel costs and time traveling for a simple meeting that will only last a couple of hours. This will allow companies and clients to devote time and resources to producing results and acquiring new projects. Interactive displays from E3 with built-in video/audio capabilities, not only come with connectivity and sharing features but are optically bonded for increased durability and multi-touch capabilities. (To learn more about optical bonding click here) They also contain optical enhancements such as anti-glare, anti-smudge, and wide viewing angles to ensure all in-office team members can have an uninterrupted viewing experience. E3’s interactive displays bring employees together from near and far into a collaborative and efficient workspace.  

PWC Transitioning to the Modern Workspace

In a survey of IT professionals, conducted in 2018 by Oblong Industries, 91% of the participants agreed, “engaging with data and information using interactive, immersive methods can help to solve complex business issues.” PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) proved this through their new collaborative workspace called ‘The Delta Room’, located in their Paris location. They incorporated interactive displays with built-in high definition video cameras in order to bring employees and clients together to drive project results in a more efficient way. The investment paid off within the first few months, enabling PwC to acquire new projects and build upon their credibility, efficiency, and reach. This goes to show that the investment of collaborative virtual workspaces can not only give employees the flexibility to work remotely but allow companies the opportunity to pursue projects that would otherwise be unattainable due to location restrictions. 

SHARP and Window’s New Collaboration Interactive Display

SHARP has partnered with Windows to create the ultimate 70” collaboration interactive display for the commercial industry. The display which contains a high-quality built-in AI conferencing camera and an IoT sensor hub can be easily integrated into most smart offices and track things like lighting, temperature, humidity, motion, and air quality so facility managers can make cost-saving decisions about facility spaces and create the optimum working environment to maximize employee productivity. This state of the art interactive display from SHARP and Windows is the next step towards creating remote-friendly workspaces. E3 Displays is a partner of SHARP and can take their displays one step further by providing enhancements for specific work environments. We can provide projective capacitive touch enhancements which permits more accurate and flexible operation, projection of the touch-field through additional layers of material plus full multi-touch capability. The typical construction of a PCT technology sensor allows for operation without direct contact to the touch sensor. Thus the touch sensor can be located behind further insulating layers, and operate even under screen protectors, or behind weather and vandal-proof glass. We can also provide optical bonding. We chose to develop a family of custom adhesive formulations whose overall performance exceeds that of competing materials and are tailored to meet varied product requirements. After thousands of hours of development and testing, we created unparalleled adhesives in optical bonding which are application (and display) specific.

Traditional Vs. Virtual 

There are many discussions on the pros and cons of encouraging a remote workforce and the pros and cons affect employers, employees, and clients. Let’s take a look at why a traditional work environment might be the preferred option. There is the argument that communication can be lost and in a work environment that already has lackluster communication levels, this can be detrimental to teams and even entire organizations. This is why it is extremely important to implement collaboration systems and interactive in-office displays so employers don’t lose touch with their employees and clients. As long as managers and team leaders are proactive in initiating and following through on virtual meetings, there is no reason why communication should be lost. In fact, by not having to gather everyone in one place, an organization can save on facility costs such as extra meeting space and utilities. Some would say that they lack the discipline to not be in the office, which is why companies who are offering indefinite work from home options are also still providing in-office space as well. There’s also the “bad” side of work-life balance. Sometimes employees who are not accustomed to working from home don’t have the ideal home office space and ritual. Everything takes getting used to and many employers are providing added support and communication channels for employees to become accustomed to the new culture.

The benefits of a flexible work environment curated with the right collaboration and interactive tools, far exceed any minor setbacks. According to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com, “…a typical employer can save an average of $11,000 per half-time telecommuter per year.” This means that an organization with just 50 flexible employees can save an average of half a million dollars per year! Global Work Analytics uses different factors such as increased productivity, real estate costs, reduced absenteeism and turnover, and better disaster preparedness to calculate this amount. For employees, there is a positive work-life balance, reduced childcare costs, less time commuting so more time to produce results, lower commuting costs, and higher job satisfaction. Clients who work with a company that are prepared for and accustomed to interacting with people virtually through interactive technology can save on travel expenses for meetings that last for hours and save time not having to commute themselves. 

Conclusion

There are many aspects to examine when contemplating a flexible work environment but the first step towards transitioning is equipping you and your team with commercial-grade interactive displays that will transform the way you communicate. Even if you make the decision that it is too early to transition to a virtual work environment, interactive displays can expand your reach with clients and increase their overall satisfaction. It can allow employees whose kids are sick or cars broke down into the office so they don’t miss out on project defining strategy sessions. Here at E3 Displays, we can help make sure your investment is nothing short of exceeding your standards through high definition imagery, wide viewing angles that cover the room, a brightness that reaches the last row, optical bonding that makes sure your display will grow with your company, and touch enhancements to make all users feel like they’re in the room with you. 

About E3 Displays

 E3 Displays is trusted to make commercial responsive display solutions from the first to the millionth touch. A commercial display should be cost-effective, while also providing optimum performance for your employees and your customers. A high-quality commercial display is vital to capture audience attention and increase operational efficiency. Our elite team will supply you with high-performance display solutions customized for your business and operational goals that can be easily integrated into an existing application or we can aid in the design of a completely new concept. At E3 Displays, we can help you transition the way you do work.

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