Intelligent CIO Middle East Issue 84 | Page 45

CIO OPINION retain the flexibility they had during the pandemic . Nevertheless , while the workforce may have changed , the office is still equipped for the old way of working . Recent changes are shaping a new paradigm and businesses across the financial sector must keep up to meet employee expectations .
Office revamp : a much-needed initiative
Anyone who has entered an office since the pandemic would likely have experienced the eerie silence of the rows of empty desks and cubicles . Memories of battling colleagues for coveted meeting spaces and groups huddling around a single laptop are probably still fresh .
From the advent of remote working , many of us have experienced significant increases in productivity . However , the quality of our interactions has dramatically fallen . As a result , work meetings have regularly failed to meet expectations . A recent study by Barco showed a 25-point decline between 2020 and 2021 on its meeting barometer . The findings further indicated that 57 % of white-collar workers considered meeting rooms as the most useful spaces in a postpandemic world . Hence , employees no longer view the office as simply a place to work . Rather , they think of it as an encouraging space for more collaboration .
In this scenario , the opportunity to realign office spaces may come as a system shock to an industry long accustomed to the traditional ‘ cubicle rows ’ layout . Nevertheless , as professionals now covet meeting spaces , they will be a functional must-have . Currently , 50 % of workers visit offices to host meeting calls in a more professional setting , indicating that the desire for efficient meetings will be the real drive to an office return . Therefore , accommodating these new behaviours should be a priority for the financial and banking sector .
Tapping into hybrid technology
Improved office layout isn ’ t the only change needed for a hybrid environment . There ’ s a great opportunity for businesses to upgrade outdated or inefficient collaboration technologies .
Like other industries , financial sector employees have embraced the laptop as the main device to work , collaborate and host meetings , fuelling the surge in preference for Bring Your Own Meeting solutions ( BYOM ). Barco ’ s research indicates that 77 % of respondents cannot imagine working without their laptop and have enjoyed sharing their screen and content with just a simple click . With meetings now controlled via the user ’ s laptop , businesses must invest
Recent changes are shaping a new paradigm and businesses across the financial sector must keep up to meet employee expectations .
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