There was a time when every employee within an organization showed up to work, every day, from nine to five. They had their own personal workspace, and rarely left the office except for lunch break or quitting time. This was also the time where we stored contact information on a rolodex, faxing was the regular method of sharing documents, and landlines were a critical tool for an organization’s survival. We’ve come a long way since then, and workplace tools are now catered to a more mobile workforce.
The Virtual Workspace
The workspace of 2015 can be run from virtually anywhere - the car, the airport, your home, or the business’ physical location. Many of our tasks must be completed from smart phones and tablets, as our employees are constantly on the go. While these are exciting times, this has led to an entirely new set of challenges for Facilities Managers and their teams.
The FM’s role has always been a complex one. They’re required to wear many hats, putting out fires all over the facility to ensure it runs smoothly and uninterrupted. In a sense, their job was ahead of its time, a foreshadowing of what’s ahead. Before the days of the Internet, mobile tools, and robust software solutions, FMs walked the floors of the facility taking notes as to what they needed to accomplish once they made it back to their desks. They worked a full day before they ever even made it back to complete desk work.
The modern day FM still walks the floors putting out fires, with one significant change - technology now affords us the ability to complete much of the work straight from our mobile devices. When the Facilities Manager reaches their desk after making their rounds, fires are already put out and they can focus on upcoming projects, answer emails and phone calls, or analyze data for that upcoming budget meeting.
Technology: The Enabler
These technological advancements have proven beneficial for more than just the Facilities Management team. Mobile applications such as iOffice’s Room Reservation software (OpenSpace) are available from all your mobile devices. If you have a long train ride commute into the city each day, why not schedule that upcoming collaboration meeting with your colleagues? You even have the ability to send out invitations to coworkers, add an event to your calendar, and view invitation responses.
Need a more quiet space to work on the big deadline coming up? Log onto OpenSpace, see what’s available and reserve the space you need. One of our big city clients even got creative and utilized their software for reserving bicycle parking spaces.
IWMS at Work
Integrated Workplace Management Systems (IWMS) are there to simplify processes, eliminate errors and redundancy, and increase organizational efficiency. But perhaps one of the biggest advantages is the increased mobility this software stands to add. Users save time by not having to go back to their desk each time they need to take care of something. And since all data is updated in real-time, management can make on the fly decisions based on the most current data.
In today’s information-rich business environment, it is critical that FMs and their workforce have the tools they need to perform their job, regardless of time of day or location. Add an IWMS to your arsenal of tools that offers mobile apps to ensure efficient use of your time and resources.