Picture this: Every day, Sara is inspired to go to work. With a smart office that ensures her safety and wellbeing, Sara faces the day’s challenges head on.
She drives her motorbike to work — backpack strapped on both shoulders, mask on, helmet fastened — and passes through the entrance gate hassle-free. Upon entering the turnstiles, a quick QR code scan on her mobile phone on the lift brings Sara to her destination floor — no buttons touched, full safety guaranteed. She’s ready to begin the day.
At coffee or toilet breaks, a simple wave of the hand can gain her access to the pantry and the powder room through the seamless motion sensor doors.
As soon as the day ends, she leaves the office the same way she entered — smart, easy, and convenient.
Sara’s office is the future — but a future not too far ahead. This kind of safe, efficient, and contactless technology will soon rise right at the heart of Ho Chi Minh City.
The pandemic changed the way we work, so we adapt
When the coronavirus pandemic first started, businesses and organizations, employers, and employees were forced to quickly pivot and change. It has caused the most significant disruption to workplaces in generations. And many of these adjustments and changes will undoubtedly impact the way workplaces used to operate for years to come.
But what happens when we all go back to (new) normal?
Experts predict office buildings could become elaborate conference centers, while focused work is done remotely. In an article by the US National Law Review, “Desks could become spaced out, partitions could go up, and cleaning stations stocked with hand sanitizer and antibacterial wipes will become the norm.”
But for the optimists, that’s not what the new normal brings. Many employees are eager to return to working on-site, including being physically present with colleagues, customers, and clients.
But will the workplace handshake survive the global pandemic? Probably and ideally, no. Will it still be business as usual? Perhaps. With technology? For sure.
Before the pandemic, workplace safety means improved productivity. And it is only when the employees feel safe at work that they can invest the fullest of their capacities and exploit the best of their potential to work.
But presently, with the coronavirus still lurking and outbreaks continuing to threaten the economy, workplace safety could already mean having contactless lifts, hands-free office, pantry, and restroom access. It’s where you can come and go as you please, with the wave of a hand, card, or phone.
Even the old school QR codes have made their comeback, bringing convenience and providing a higher take on “clean and safe transactions”, which was underrated in the pre-pandemic time. In fact, according to a study, 94% of people in the Asia Pacific region are considering the use of at least one emerging payment method, such as QR codes, digital or mobile wallets, installment plans, cryptocurrencies, and biometrics.
The fact that consumers plan to use QR codes next year, there is greater trust in QR codes now more than ever. Fortunately, one of this pandemic’s silver lining.
Speaking of silver linings, the pandemic has been a technological equalizer of sorts. Previously, those people who were considered, for the lack of a better term, “technophobes” have had no choice but to adapt and embrace technology on a daily basis, for work and health safety. And in most cases, thanks to technology, employees and even the employers are becoming more efficient.
Contactless technology and why it matters now
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, many forms of contactless technology already existed. But because it wasn’t considered a “need” then, tapping a credit card to buy a cup of coffee or unlocking one’s smartphone with a glance didn’t mean anything but smart features only the tech-savvy were keen to use.
But what is contactless technology? According to Proxyclick, a cloud-based solution transforming how employees, visitors, and contractors flow in and out of locations, the contactless technology basically means “any device that you can use or operate without needing to touch it. Standard human-machine interfaces in this niche include camera-based gestures, proximity-enabled screens, voice recognition, and eye-tracking tech.”
Now that more and more people are opening their arms wide open for technology advancements, what we all need right now is a safe and new work environment solution. But creating a faster, simpler, and more efficient world does not happen by itself.
Smart QR codes, tech advancements
OfficeHaus believes the need for physical contact is a thing of the past — by delivering modern, efficient, inspirational spaces and having a future-proof and passion for sustainability, it’s definitely business as usual with contactless technology.
Remember Sara and her contactless workplace? Contactless will lead to safer, effortless, and more seamless services. Generally, it will mean less time shopping for groceries, easier access to health care, and yes, it will mean a safer workplace. Yes, just like Sara’s!
For OfficeHaus, having the means to provide tech-enabled contactless features to enhance the workplace experience has become an essential requirement in making sure it's tenant-focused.
It is expected though that some tenants remain positive in returning to the office and some simply do not. These concerns are directly tied to xenophobia, the fear of the unknown or just fear in general, not everyone doesn’t feel safe leaving their homes for work.
According to PwC’s COVID-19 CFO Pulse Survey, “the number one concern for financial decision-makers is a new wave of infections, and 81% of CFOs plan to change their workplace safety requirements to address this concern.”
The survey tells us that the key to addressing the worries of tenants, staff, and property teams alike lies in leveraging property technology tools — such as what the growing contactless industry offers — to foster safety, communication, and engagement among the workforce.
The transition may require major investments in a range of underlying technologies like more advanced processors and memory chips, better image sensors, smarter AI, more robust data centers, and faster communications networks to tie it all together.
But OfficeHaus is in it for the long haul and the payoff will be immense.
Without a doubt, so much potential has been realized for these technologies during a crisis. It’s safe to say contactless technology is a trend that will and should stay.