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Report: Top Workplace Challenges Include Tech Adaptation and Physical Security

Apr 30, 2024 | Public | 0 comments

Ninety-six percent of organizations are encouraging or mandating on-site work with some regularity, highlighting a significant shift back to physical workplaces, according to new research from Envoy. However, organizational leaders face challenges in measuring success and managing their workspaces.

The research found that organizations often lack the data and technology to ensure physical security, optimize space usage, and make informed resource allocation decisions. This gap leaves organizations vulnerable to security breaches, inefficient workplaces, and wasted resources.

Key Findings

Envoy partnered with Hanover Research to survey over 400 executives and managers across facilities management, workplace security, IT, and HR in the United States. Key findings include the following:

  • One-third of organizations are still managing most of their workplace operations manually.
  • The biggest workplace management challenges companies are facing are maintaining security and compliance across locations (48%) and adapting to new technologies (47%).
  • 66% of organizations are looking to use workplace data to improve employee experience, establish data-driven work policies, such as an on-site schedule (66%), and repurpose unused workspaces (42%).
  • 51% believe advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) will shape the workplace most over the next decade.
  • Despite demand for data and new technologies, 78% of companies are either actively consolidating their tech stacks or are exploring consolidation options.

“Outdated workplace management hinders cost control, compliance adherence, and crafting a stellar employee experience,” said Cormac Twomey, CTO at Envoy. “Leaders dream of AI-powered offices, yet most grapple with manual processes, creating data gaps and security weaknesses. This necessitates immediate action—automating tasks and consolidating tools onto integrated platforms is no longer a luxury. It’s the only course to avoid ballooning costs and crippling compliance issues.”

Are Manual Processes Draining Company Revenue?

With more people back in physical offices, facilities managers are under pressure to evolve their tech stack to accurately measure a variety of workplace operations. Looking ahead, 91% of survey respondents envision the future of their workplace as hybrid or fully on-site. However, managing distributed teams and flexible work schedules presents operational challenges.

Without comprehensive occupancy data, organizations lack the insights needed to optimize space and make informed real estate decisions. Envoy’s survey found that one-third of organizations manage the majority of their workplace operations manually. This inefficiency can come at a cost—IDC estimates the annual revenue impact caused by manual processes can be upwards of 20-30%.

Top occupancy data insights for workplace leaders include enhancing employee experience (66%), establishing data-driven work policies like on-site schedules (66%), and maximizing space utilization by repurposing unused areas (42%).

Today’s Biggest Work Challenge: Physical Security

In addition to dispersed employees and fragmented data sources, physical security and compliance are key drivers for companies to adopt new technology that protects their people and spaces. The primary challenges facing workplaces today are managing security and compliance across multiple locations (48%), promoting on-site collaboration (37%) with the proper resources for a distributed or hybrid workforce (35%), and adapting to new technology to support all of the above (47%).

Having a distributed workforce with varying employee traffic patterns further complicates security and compliance needs. Manual security processes make it difficult to see trends in visitor and employee occupancy data, which affects an organization’s ability to plan ahead and make sure it has the right security and safety controls in place. According to a previous Envoy study, 62% of businesses plan to allocate more resources to workplace protection in 2024.

Workplace Innovation vs. Consolidation

This latest survey found that the majority of respondents expressed interest in investing in new and emerging workplace tech, such as automation and AI. Just over half (51%) of organizations believe that technological advancements with AI will be the most influential factor in shaping the modern workplace, specifically when it comes to enhancing on-site experiences.

While some workplace leaders are buying into the hype around AI, tech consolidation and cost efficiency continue to be top of mind. Despite wanting the latest and greatest tech features, survey respondents shared that 78% of organizations are exploring or actively consolidating their tech stacks to cut down on costs. According to the report, this highlights the challenge of balancing innovation with economic realities.

The full report is available here.

The post Report: Top Workplace Challenges Include Tech Adaptation and Physical Security appeared first on Facilities Management Advisor.


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