Commercial Integrator June 2022 - 30

Future of Technology
C llab rati n
TODAY and TOMORROW
Future Vision
Examining the employee experience,
optimizing collaboration workflows,
and marshaling the power of AR
and VR. By Irwin Lazar
WHEN ASKED TO WRITE a piece for the inaugural issue of the
IMCCA's Collaboration Today and Tomorrow on the future of
technology and how it would shape our lives, I thought it to be
a difficult task. After all, few accurately forecast how emerging
technologies like the internet, the World Wide Web and ubiquitous
videoconferencing would change our lives.
With that caveat in mind, I will share insights into the trends
that Metrigy sees in its research, and how we expect them to
impact the workplace over the next few years. Each year, we
gather data from several companies, including their three- to
five-year plans for technology spending and deployment.
Here are the areas where I hope to see significant growth and
impact in the workforce, and in consumer engagement.
collaboration tool usage. Other vendors are delivering " voice of
the employee " feedback tools and platforms to enable crossteam
connections, to allow collaborative goal setting and to ensure
employees know what is happening within the organization.
2. Ensuring an optimal work experience through investments
in high-quality voice and video endpoints. This includes
use of business-grade devices like headsets, speakerphones
and cameras, along with management tools that allow individuals
to customize device usage. Here, AI can enable more than
just noise cancelling by allowing for acoustic fencing, backlight
compensation and image enhancements.
Optimizing Collaboration Workflows
These last few years have seen organizations adopt different
collaboration apps. However, in many cases, they exist in silos,
and employees spend a lot of time moving between them.
In the future, these apps and capabilities will continue to
converge, allowing both internal and customer-facing engagement
to happen within a work-hub. Additionally, with security
and governance controls, and the ability to leverage low and nocode
tools, employees can build their own optimized workflows.
An Exploration of Augmented and Virtual Reality
AR and VR collaboration has been a topic of discussion since
the launch of Second Life 20 years ago. Many companies
have tried (and failed) to deliver solutions, largely because the
technology wasn't easy to use, and because people prefer to
communicate directly with one another than with avatars. Still,
as several use cases have gained traction, so has the use of
AR and VR. Today, companies can have solutions that provide
virtual training and product demonstration capabilities that go
beyond a two-dimensional videoconference.
Vendors and enterprises are now investing in a metaverse
A Focus on Employee Experience
" Employee experience " has become a buzzword in recent
months as companies figure out how to retain employees and
foster a culture of collaboration and innovation, regardless of
location. Employee experience initiatives typically fall into two
distinct areas:
1. Understanding how employees engage with one another
(and with customers) as well as implementing analytics and
feedback mechanisms to help management understand employee
happiness, job satisfaction and well-being. Collaboration
vendors are now providing dashboards that allow employees to
see how they are spending their days and to gain insights into
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Commercial Integrator JUNE 2022
that has the potential of creating a truly interactive virtual world
alongside the physical one. For remote employees, this may
offer significant benefits, such as training and the potential to
leverage gaming to build social bonds with distant colleagues.
Lastly, the future is likely to be driven by the need for flexibility.
Millions have found that they can effectively work remotely,
and thus avoid the commute cost and time. While COVID-19's
impact is diminishing, it is not gone. In our research, those
companies who embrace work location choice and provide appropriate
devices, management support and employee feedback
mechanisms are the ones realizing the most value for
their collaboration investment today. They are best positioned
to deal with whatever comes along in the future.
Irwin Lazar is president and principal analyst at Metrigy.
commercialintegrator.com
LUISMOLINERO/STOCK.ADOBE.COM
http://www.commercialintegrator.com

Commercial Integrator June 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Commercial Integrator June 2022

Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Cover1
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Cover2
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - 1
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - 2
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - 3
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Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 1
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 2
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 3
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 4
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 5
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Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 9
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Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 11
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 12
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Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Special Section 14
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Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Cover3
Commercial Integrator June 2022 - Cover4
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