As the focus turns from sanitization to enhancing workplace efficiency, corporations are turning to real estate tech companies for help, according to Sandeep Dave, Global Head-Digital & Technology, CBRE. Artificial intelligence (AI) is another tool being used by businesses to figure out how to make employee days more effective.
"Now it is very much about how a company can ensure that when an employee decides to go to the office, he will be productive," said Dave. Corporates are now using data to increase the efficiency of employees.
"We have a product that ensures that employees' calendars are the same, so they can figure out who is going to the office that day. People in the office can also see occupancy in real-time. They can see that social distancing is being maintained, among other things," Dave said.
According to CBRE's "2022 India Office Occupier Survey," around 73% of occupiers in India are considering implementing hybrid working arrangements in the future. The Covid-19 outbreak prompted businesses to choose flexible working arrangements, which is how the trend started.
Office software became a communication tool soon after the epidemic, and during the second wave, it was employed to maintain employee safety. After that, it was all about monitoring sanitization and obtaining current occupancy information.
"Over the last five or six years, this used to be a very manual industry, whereas technology and automation have become a part of the industry even before Covid19. Post covid, it got accelerated," said Dave.
Corporates are also using technology to achieve a net zero target.
"Most of the solutions available on the market are good for getting data for one building. But if you want to do it on a portfolio scale, which is what is required to achieve Net Zero targets, the company needs information on energy efficiency and workplace experience," said Dave.
And clients are also asking for deeper insights.
"Commercial real estate is a siloed data environment, where data comes from various places, it doesn't merge together. There's a property record in 15 different locations," Dave said.
Businesses use data to evaluate a variety of factors, including operational effectiveness, energy usage, health and safety records, and occupancy levels.
According to experts, coming back to work is a global issue at the moment, and everyone is attempting to predict what the future of employment will entail.
"The future of work is going to be distributed. A workspace is not only a place where people come in to get work done but more so to collaborate. So now the design of the space is not just a row of workstations, but also an agile room, wellness rooms, and collaboration rooms," Dave said.