It’s clear in recent years the way we work has undergone a revolution. With the evolution of technology, hybrid workplaces are a reality, offering the ease and ability to work outside the traditional office space, while experiencing the connection and energy of engaging with colleagues. Workforce management tools have never been more important, ensuring the hybrid workplace model thrives.
Microsoft Places is a platform that has embraced this shift, with the goal of providing a Connected Workplace experience to help you reimagine hybrid and in-person work in new ways.
What is the Connected Workplace?
The Connected Workplace, as defined by Microsoft, represents a novel class of technology designed to establish modern work environments equipped with tools to assist all workers. By utilising data gathered from these settings, it can adjust to the shifting requirements of employees, allowing organisations to evolve in line with their workforce’s preferences.
A key factor in the development of the Connected Workplace is research from Microsoft in 2022 which revealed that 73% of workers and 78% of business leaders require a stronger rationale for going to the office than merely corporate expectations, or the ‘because I said so’.
According to the research, 84% of staff members would be encouraged by the opportunity to socialise with colleagues, and 85% would be driven by reestablishing team connections. As social interaction becomes the primary reason for commuting to work, Connected Workplaces emerge to support a fresh perspective on the future of work.
How does Microsoft Places support a Connected Workplace?
Microsoft Places is a connected workplace platform that simplifies hybrid working, allowing businesses to plan how to optimise office space efficiently and provide guidance to employees about their work schedule, and uses the data collected to seamlessly adapt to the changing needs of their workforce.
How does Microsoft Places work?
There are three main focus areas of Microsoft Places:
To genuinely optimise workspaces for today’s workforce, businesses must comprehend the utilisation of their spaces. Microsoft Places assists in preparing for anticipated occupancy, enabling the reduction of open floors when necessary, lowering energy costs, and flexibly modifying areas such as huddle rooms based on occupancy levels.
Microsoft Places seamlessly connects with Outlook and Teams to streamline the process of hybrid scheduling. By utilising shared data indicators from these applications, this tool allows you to see when staff members intend to be present in the workplace up to a week in advance. This forward-thinking approach aids in ensuring proper occupancy guidance and maximising space utilisation.
In addition, you can modify your schedule to fully benefit from busy in-person days. Through intelligent booking, the system allows you to pair the appropriate available spaces with the meeting’s objective. It also suggests reduced travel times considering traffic and planned meetings. This way, workers can optimise their time at the office without the sense of a wasted journey.
Microsoft Places comes with features designed to greatly enhance the workplace, particularly in environments that were not initially designed for a hybrid work model:
- Wayfinding allows employees to access a map on their mobile device to show them where meeting places are
- Hot desk booking enables employees to view the seating locations of their nearest coworkers and select a workstation accordingly.
- Microsoft Teams Rooms provides an inclusive meeting experience for all staff members, irrespective of their geographical location.
- Serendipitous meet-ups enable employees to develop more casual methods for cooperation.
Benefits of using Microsoft Places for a hybrid work environment
Improved teamwork: Effective cooperation is essential for the achievement of any remote group. Microsoft Places simplifies collaboration for remote teams by offering an array of tools that facilitate smooth communication and teamwork. The platform allows for effortless meeting scheduling, booking areas, and file sharing, guaranteeing seamless collaboration among remote team members.
Enhanced communication: Effective communication is crucial for the success of any hybrid team. Microsoft Places provides a variety of functions aimed at boosting communication, such as real-time navigation and guidance, guaranteeing that remote employees can maintain contact and effortlessly navigate through the office.
Enhanced efficiency: Maintaining focus and productivity can be difficult in a hybrid work environment. Microsoft Places offers features that are aimed at boosting efficiency, so employees can choose to work from the location that best suits their needs. Additionally, the platform offers valuable information on space utilisation, assisting organisations in refining their workspaces and minimising disruptions.
Microsoft 365 integration
Microsoft Places integrates with Microsoft’s suite of productivity tools, Microsoft 365. This allows your employees to access collaboration, communication, and productivity tools directly through the Microsoft Places platform, streamlining their workflows and increasing work efficiency. The same functionality that you come to expect from Microsoft 365 is available through Microsoft Places, allowing teams to collaborate in real-time on documents and projects, and communicate remotely through Microsoft Teams.
Connect your team with Microsoft Places
Microsoft Places is changing the way we work for the better. By providing users with a connected workspace that can be accessed from anywhere, Microsoft Places is making the decision to adopt hybrid work models easy. The certified Microsoft consultants at Intelliworx can help your business leverage Microsoft’s cutting-edge management platform to support future growth and success with your hybrid workforce.