2020 has been a year of transformation for modern offices. It has changed the way companies and employees function, work, and interact – and these changes are here to stay. For instance, 43% of full-time workers in the U.S. would like to work remotely more often, even after COVID-19 is gone.
It has also been an excellent year for the adoption of digital platforms and virtual workspaces facilitating payments, working from home, and new technologies like AI, ML, and cloud computing.
This transformation has paved the way for new trends for digital workspace in the future. New tools are being developed and deployed and promise to optimize business processes and collaboration.
Every organization is partially digital, but 2021 will be the year that will prove to be a game-changer in defining virtual workspace trends.
Below are the top 5 emerging digital workspace trends to look out for in 2021.
1. Mobile-First Approach
The young generation requires some flexibility in the way they work. Studies reveal that the Millenials have emerged as leaders in some sectors worldwide and comprise 50% of the workforce. However, this number is expected to reach 75% by 2025, as per Deloitte.
The new generation has a different approach to work. They feel that if they can manage their work remotely, there is no need to commute to the office. This is because the world is moving towards a mobile-first approach, with digital workplaces being more mobile than ever. This approach allows the workers to collaborate in real-time, enabling the execution of tasks from anywhere. Thus, the trend for mobile adoption will continue to grow in 2021.
2. Advanced Automation
The increasing workload of the remote employees creates more work for departments such as admin, IT, HR, and internal communications. This is where advanced automation comes into the picture – the design and automation of tasks or data as per the business rules.
Its proper implementation will transform the digital workspace landscape in 2021 by cutting down the manual work. Some examples of the same are:
- Document Organization – the automatic saving of documents from the email
- Invoice creation – bridging the gap between payment tools and accounting software
- Customer support – automatic creation of support tickets
3. Adoption of A Secure and Scalable Digital Workplace
Opting for a digital workplace does not remain an option for businesses anymore – it has become a necessity since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Companies need to go digital and push themselves to offer contactless services and allow their employees to work remotely. However, this new necessity for a digital workplace also requires on-demand data availability, robust cybersecurity, and scalability as per the needs.
This ensures a promising and widespread adoption of Workspace as a Service (WaaS) for better productivity along with strategically designed cybersecurity measures like spam detection, regulatory compliance, and more.
WaaS offers virtual desktops that can be managed as per your needs. For instance, if multiple employees join on a single day, virtual desktops for them can be configured within a few minutes so that they can start with their tasks.
4. Rising Adoption of BYOD
BYOD or Bring Your Own Device promotes the idea of employees accessing the official network and data through their own electronic devices. The pandemic has further made BYOD popular, with its market growing beyond 350 billion USD by 2022. Other reasons for the popularization of BYOD can be the development of 4G across the globe and the easy and affordable availability of smartphones (even in developing nations).
In 2021, companies will focus on giving more flexibility to their employees by using personal laptops or smartphones. This will help the enterprises save their infrastructural expenses and focus on adopting new technologies to improve productivity. For instance, accountants and CPAs can use their personal devices for handling official data; the money saved can be used to adopt technologies to improve tax practice.
5. Cloud Adoption Skyrocket
As per Statista, the global public cloud market will reach around 82 billion USD by 2022. It is an impressive growth from just 16 billion USD in 2015. This means that most organizations have started their journey to the cloud, and those that haven’t will be using the cloud in the coming years.
The cloud is a great way to replace the legacy systems and move the organization to a much safer and more realistic working environment. For example, accounting firms can host their favorite applications such as QuickBooks on the cloud and enjoy the benefits like remote access, round-the-clock IT support, and the like.
2020 has made businesses realize that they need to be prepared for the unexpected. With life slowly getting back to normal in 2021, it is time for them to create a strategy that helps them build a digital workspace that takes care of their employees’ health and increases their productivity.
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