5 Indications Your IWMS Is Limiting Your Company’s Growth Potential

by Erin Sevitz on December 7, 2021
Workplace Technology Maturity Assessment

The market for integrated workplace management systems (IWMS) continues to grow as more companies use the Internet of Things and smart building technologies to drive post-COVID workplace transformation and manage a hybrid environment. As organizations grow in size and complexity, the technology they use to manage people, places, assets, and data has become more complicated and siloed.

This can lead to a lack of visibility and inconsistencies when it comes to business operations and the overall employee experience.

IWMS software has tremendous potential to improve business agility, streamline workplace collaboration, and reduce facilities management costs by connecting disparate technologies and data, but only if the solution allows for full integration.

An IWMS that is outdated or overly complicated will only make workplace management more difficult, limiting your organization’s ability to create a consistent experience as you scale.

Here’s a closer look at the changing role of an IWMS in the modern workplace and five indications yours could be holding you back.

Evaluate your IWMS with this five-minute assessment.

What is the role of an IWMS in the workplace today?

IWMS plays an important role in a continually evolving business environment. In fact, 85% of users reported productivity increased by 30% or more after an implementation. But not all IWMS platforms are created with the same features that are necessary in today’s workplace.

COVID-19 created a need for smarter space management, including occupancy planning, social distancing, and managing more flexible seating arrangements. This initially arose out of necessity, but as employees began to return to the office, workplace leaders quickly realized the potential to reduce real estate costs with strategies such as office hoteling, where employees reserve rooms or desks when they need them.

Now, many corporate real estate leaders are reevaluating how much office space they really need. They’re considering consolidating several underutilized spaces into a single floor or a single office or leasing several smaller offices closer to where their employees live.

At the same time, they’re looking for opportunities to maintain their buildings more efficiently, with intelligent cleaning based on sensor data and the ability to automate routine tasks.

They’re also rethinking the way employees collaborate in this new environment. A more distributed workforce needs to be able to find people and places quickly, reserve space, and request important services.

The best IWMS software supports all these critical functions, including:

● Space and facilities management

● Real estate management and space accounting

● Maintenance management

● Capital project management

● Sustainability and energy management

They also futureproof organizations with risk management capabilities, employee experience solutions, and real-time reporting.

Is your IWMS limiting your company’s growth potential?

At this pivotal point in workplace transformation, smart companies recognize the value of an IWMS. Eighty-one percent of global firms said they plan to increase spending on software that improves space utilization and space planning, according to the latest Verdantix research.

Unfortunately, many still experience the limitations of legacy technology that requires frequent IT involvement and extensive updates that can cost as much as $1 million per year for large enterprises.

Others realize their IWMS lacks critical employee experience features, such as the ability to help employees navigate their new environment or integrate with mobile apps.

The best IWMS platforms are easy to update and connect seamlessly with new solutions. If you are experiencing any of these five challenges, it may be time to invest in a new IWMS.

1. Your IWMS architecture is short-sighted

In today’s business environment, constant pressure to meet increasing customer demands and performance standards can cause technology solutions to become outdated at a faster pace. Features that are standard today may not have been built into IWMS software five or ten years ago. And with such rapid advancements in technology since the onset of the pandemic, a more comprehensive IWMS can greatly enhance your ability to operate smoothly.

If you find yourself spending too much time on processes that should be easier — such as creating a single space utilization report that accounts for all your real estate properties — it may be time to look at a new solution.

You may also be experiencing the frustration of paying for annual updates just to keep your system operational.

2. The functionality is limited

If you find yourself looking for additional tools to help manage tedious manual functions such as reconfiguring floor plans, managing new seating assignments, planning office relocations, and keeping up with maintenance requests, then your current IWMS is not performing adequately.

Some providers market themselves as IWMS software when they are really single-point solutions without a defined strategy for expanding product functionality. They serve a specific purpose, but don’t account for the many other needs of your workforce. That includes the need to manage inventory, mail, maintenance, reservations, and visitors with full visibility into how these different functions impact the bigger picture.

If you have a growing number of independent contractors using your workplace, for instance, you need to account for this in your space planning strategy. Unless your IWMS tracks visitor and occupancy data, your future projections will be short-sighted. You need an IWMS that makes it easy to forecast future growth by creating new space and seating scenarios as the needs of your workforce evolves.

3. It’s difficult to develop innovative processes

One of the primary reasons for adopting an IWMS is to automate manual processes, such as managing service requests, scheduling preventive maintenance, and planning and managing office moves.

Unfortunately, some systems are so rigid that they don’t allow you to create customized workflows to support the way your company works. One example is a workflow that solves the common problem of unattended room reservations. When you use sensors along with room reservation software, you can automatically cancel a reservation if sensors don’t detect activity in the room after a certain period of time.

If your team is continually creating workarounds or struggling to find more efficient ways to achieve your goals, it may be time to evaluate new solutions.

4. It’s difficult to integrate existing technologies

Your IWMS should be able to work seamlessly with the business applications your company already uses and new technology you’re considering, such as building information modeling or AI-powered solutions. Without easy access to data from these solutions, you could be spending countless hours gathering information from multiple sources to discover actionable insights. This could lead to missed opportunities, such as renewing a lease for another year when it would have been more cost-effective to cancel it.

You need an IWMS that either supports or replaces your existing systems for space planning, move management, room and desk reservations, service requests, and other important functions.

It should also connect to any applications employees use to navigate your workplace, reserve space, request service, and receive mail, visitors, or important information.

5. The user interface isn’t easy to navigate

As a workplace manager, you have more than enough to keep you busy. Your IWMS software is supposed to make it easier to manage building maintenance, real estate leases, and other administrative processes. If you’re constantly toggling back and forth between applications or using a large, complex ERP system, your technology is adding to your frustration instead of minimizing it.

User-friendly software isn’t just nice to have; it’s an essential element of a productive workforce.

Technology that is easy to use has better user adoption and also improves overall employee engagement. A New Zealand study that compared tech-forward companies to technology laggards found a significant disparity in how employees felt about their employer. At companies that embraced new technology, only 10% of employees had negative feelings toward their employer, while 58% of those at technology laggards did.

Take the first step toward evaluating your IWMS

With an increased need for interconnected support for real estate and facility management, it’s no surprise that more companies are seeking IWMS software. An effective IWMS offers numerous benefits for businesses, leading to average business outcomes including:

  • A 42% improvement in facility usage
  • A 40% improvement in workspace management
  • A 30% reduction in asset lifecycle costs
  • A 14% reduction in facility maintenance costs
  • A 10% reduction in energy consumption

If your company isn’t achieving these results or you’re experiencing some of these frustrations with your existing IWMS, it may be time to look for a new solution.

To see how your workplace technology measures up compared with industry best practices and get a personalized report for how to improve, take our five-minute assessment today.


Erin Sevitz

Erin Sevitz is the Senior Director of Marketing at iOFFICE + SpaceIQ.

Capterra Ratings: ★★★★★ 4.5/5