How mobile working can help complex industries stay agile

IoT and mobile printing enable more agile industries.



Your competitive advantage is here

The mobile office is a trend that has the business world abuzz. The ability to work, learn and collaborate from any location has clear benefits for any organization. For industries that deal with complex information, such as engineering and construction, it has become a critical competitive advantage.

Digital business transformation is at the core of mobile working. Cisco describes it as “the convergence of people, business, and things to enable new business models that drive revenue, gain competitive advantage and improve efficiency”. So, what does a mobile office culture look like? And how can you embrace it for a more productive, and profitable, organization?


Embracing the IoT-connected workplace

The rapid growth of the internet of things (IoT) is having an impact on every corner of society. That includes the modern workplace, where it is bringing dramatic changes in how space and assets are allocated, managed and optimized.

In an IoT-connected office, sensors securely capture data about people and the environment. This data is processed by analytics systems that run in the cloud, and actuators or other networked devices perform the appropriate actions.

The flexible workplace is one of the top emerging applications of IoT. Hot-desking, where employees book spaces based on their task needs, is taking off in smart workplaces across the Middle East. The trend is being led by global firms that measure staff performance in work quality, rather than quantity of hours worked.

Hot-desking allows employees to use online tools to reserve and configure a workspace. IoT technology can automatically personalize the environment in the booked space with options such as phone extension, lighting, and temperature – ensuring that it is task-appropriate for the employee by the time they arrive.

Another IoT innovation is smart campus parking, which uses IoT sensors to help drivers quickly find an available parking spot. In a similar vein, floor-by-floor navigation (or wayfinding) can help people get to their meetings on time. IoT solutions such as these will ultimately help employees achieve greater focus and productivity, resulting in a more nimble and profitable organization.


Smart mobile information management

Embracing mobility creates a future-ready smart office where the staff is no longer limited by technology or their environment. However, the agile and mobile-friendly workplace tends to be reserved for laptop-equipped employees who can easily move from one spot to the next.

Industries such as architecture, engineering, and construction have been slower to get on the mobility wagon, due to a lack of portability in their complex information and workflows. But now they can go mobile too, thanks to advanced information management software that lets them share, review, and print detailed plans among decentralized teams across different locations.

An example is an architect sending a new design in electronic format to remote stakeholders, who produce a detailed hard copy on a large-format multi-function printer (MFP). The design is then marked up with amendments, scanned by the MFP, and returned for further work. A face-to-face meeting is not required, and the design can be printed from any wirelessly enabled laptop or tablet.

Print management software allows end-users’ print needs to be controlled from the same centralized user interface. Jobs can be sent to local printers or even to an external print provider. The print workflow can also be automated using preset rules so that the job is sent to the most suitable printing device depending on things like format, color, or job size.

Complex industries that deal heavily in physical assets often struggle to embrace mobile or flexible working. But thanks to advancements in IoT, remote printing and information management, they too can now harness mobility to achieve a more agile and profitable operation.

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