The top five digital workplace trends that will power business success in 2023

| 9 December 2022

Undoubtedly 2022 has seen the digital workplace continue to evolve and grow even beyond its dramatic increase in use over the two previous years. Having facilitated a large percentage of remote working during the pandemic, the modern virtual office is free of geographical restrictions and powers the hybrid working trend across many different sectors. Broader considerations, such as the global climate emergency, the cost-of-living crisis, and the continuing war in Ukraine will continue to shape the digital workplace in 2023. As organisations and businesses look to stay cost-effective and competitive, whilst addressing changing employees’ expectations and needs along with ongoing skills shortages, the reliance on digital workplace technology to ensure employee productivity, satisfaction, talent retention and attraction, will continue.


Konica Minolta has identified five key trends that will particularly influence and define the digital workplace in 2023. Some of the trends were also highlighted last year and may continue to be prominent as many digital workplace trends are long-term and will continue to reoccur over the next few years.
 
Trend 1: Stricter regulations on climate protection: CSRD is around the corner
COP 27 in Egypt in November 2022 showed how tough the negotiations are in terms of agreeing to strict climate change targets; the European countries in particular had stricter expectations in advance. In 2019, the European Green Deal was presented for the first time, with which the EU member states have set themselves the goal of achieving climate neutrality by 2050 to fulfil the commitments agreed at COP 21 in Paris in 2015. To take this forward from a business perspective, the EU has recently agreed the forthcoming Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), which requires companies to report annually on the governance, social and environmental impacts and risks related to their activities. Companies must prepare for the CSRD, as it will gradually apply to different categories of companies from 2024 on and replace the previous directive on non-financial reporting. Instead of the current 11,700 companies in Europe, around 50,000 will have to report according to the CSRD.[1]
 
With increased pressure to demonstrate sustainability coming from specific legislation as well as Corporate Social Responsibility expectations, the way all organisations do business will be subject to closer scrutiny. Konica Minolta’s Environmental Policy for example, promotes sustainable development and profitable growth by integrating environmental, economic, and social perspectives into its business strategies to ensure activities are implemented in harmony with human lives and with the environment in all aspects. This includes compliance with laws and guidelines, environmental consideration of the product lifecycle and recycling, prevention of pollution, and support for the wider sustainable society.
 

Trend 2: Growing importance of communication and collaboration tools in times of hybrid working
The move to hybrid working has highlighted to many businesses that older communications platforms (such as email) are no longer suitable for enhanced online collaboration needs. Mission critical for remote working and collaboration during the pandemic, Microsoft Teams has proven that it is far more than just a video call rival for Zoom. Teams serves as a hub for teamwork, facilitating project management, chats/calls and meetings, content sharing and authoring – all in one place. The growing importance is also expressed in numbers: Since February 2020, the average Teams user has increased their weekly meeting time by 252% and sent 32% more chats each week in February 2022 than in March 2020.[2]
 
As a Microsoft Global Managed Partner, Konica Minolta’s accredited expert team is able to assist any size and type of organisation to realise the full communication and collaboration benefits from the Microsoft range of tools, including Microsoft 365 with Teams, which helps businesses to better organise and interact with employees. Using Microsoft Teams and the wider Microsoft 365 suite, organisations can modernise and digitalise business processes so that they fit seamlessly into their hybrid working environment and can be accessed anywhere, on any device, ensuring their business operations are completely agile.
 

Trend 3: Employees demand flexibility in terms of working hours and place of work
Mindful of ‘The Great Resignation’ following the pandemic, organisations need to deliver the best possible experience to keep existing employees engaged and satisfied, whilst attracting fresh talent. This particularly affects Generation Z workers. 58% (vs. 43% overall) of them are likely to consider changing employers this year.[3]  One-third (31%) of European employees already changed their jobs in the past two years.[4] The top reasons for not accepting a job offer include a lack of flexible hours (37%) and location flexibility (28%)[5], as 53% are more likely to prioritise health and well-being than before the pandemic[6]. Companies that take this into account and provide a better work-life balance through flexible models satisfy their employees, attract new talent, improve productivity and remain competitive.  
 
With its  Intelligent Connected Workplace portfolio Konica Minolta offers comprehensive support and solutions, enabling businesses to fully utilise a range of tools for flexible working. Remote Working and Home Office solutions include Cloud ServicesCollaboration and CommunicationsMobile PrintSecurity Services, and Information Management Services – all designed to offer full agility and flexibility to a business and its teams.


Trend 4: IT-as-a-Service and Desktop-as-a-Service for greater flexibility in challenging times
IT-as-a-Service delivers considerable benefits for any business. Instead of buying IT hardware, software, and services outright, the business receives everything required at a set cost for each member of the team. This avoids high initial capital expenditure costs and an in-house IT provision to service it, whilst ensuring inclusive costs for maintenance and upgrades remain predictable and affordable. The business can easily scale its IT functions up or down to meet commercial and team needs. Desktop-as-a-Service takes this approach a step further by delivering a virtual desktop to an individual or specific group of people based on their job requirements. When an employee leaves and no longer needs access to company data, permissions can be quickly and easily revoked, making it highly secure as well as cost-effective.  
 
As part of its  Managed IT Services, Konica Minolta offers both Software-as-a-Service (Cloud Print) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service. Here, Konica Minolta takes over the management and maintenance of applications as well as servers, storage and networks for the customer in the cloud, so that customers do not have to worry about how the technology works. Mainly, Konica Minolta relies on its own European data centres in Hanover (Germany) and Stockholm (Sweden) to ensure this data is fully protected and secure as well as highly available. Desktop-as-a-Service is also part of Workplace One, a compact digital workplace package consisting of a managed Microsoft 365 environment, Managed Backup Services, Remote Monitoring and Management and a SharePoint-based company portal, that is already being sold successfully in Sweden.
 

Trend 5: Doing more with less - AI and a more immersive digital world      
With the Internet of Things (IoT) continuing to expand seemingly without limits, more and more systems are being encompassed by business networks. This explosion in workplace data availability ensures that Artificial Intelligence (AI), which learns processes and patterns, can offer great opportunities in automating workflows and thereby finding greater economies through cost savings and better use of skilled employees’ time.
 
Linked to this is Robotic Process Automation (RPA), whereby AI takes over certain processes (often repetitive labour-intensive functions). Video analytics are another important aspect of this automation. Konica Minolta’s Video Solution Services for example not only cover the security applications, but are also perfect for monitoring production lines for quality control, occupational health applications to keep people safe (such as vulnerable people wandering into dangerous areas) and detecting fires. Using powerful AI and camera technology, the potential applications are almost limitless.  
 

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As businesses and organisations of every type look to ‘do more with less’, the Digital Workplace will become even more important in 2023 and beyond. Pressures to increase sustainability, whilst supporting hybrid working and engendering workplace flexibility, will mean greater pressures on the IT provision and increased use of automation. Konica Minolta’s Intelligent Connected Workplace portfolio is designed to address all these needs from a single expert supplier, enabling organisations to concentrate on their core activities with full peace of mind.

Olaf Lorenz

Head of International Marketing Division, Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe

 

[1] Sustainable economy: Parliament adopts new reporting rules for multinationals, 2022, https://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/de/press-room/20221107IPR49611/sustainable-economy-parliament-adopts-new-reporting-rules-for-multinationals

[2] Great Expectations: Making Hybrid Work Work, Microsoft, 2022, https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/worklab/work-trend-index/great-expectations-making-hybrid-work-work

[3] Great Expectations: Making Hybrid Work Work, Microsoft, 2022, https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/worklab/work-trend-index/great-expectations-making-hybrid-work-work

[4] State of Hybrid Work 2022: Europe, Owl Labs, 2022, https://owllabs.eu/state-of-hybrid-work-emea/2022

[5] State of Hybrid Work 2022: Europe, Owl Labs, 2022, https://owllabs.eu/state-of-hybrid-work-emea/2022

[6] Great Expectations: Making Hybrid Work Work, Microsoft, 2022, https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/worklab/work-trend-index/great-expectations-making-hybrid-work-work
 

About Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe


Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe GmbH, based in Langenhagen, Germany, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta Inc., Tokyo, Japan. With its unique expertise in imaging, data processing and data-based decision making, Konica Minolta creates relevant solutions for its customers - small and medium-sized businesses, large enterprises and public sector - and solves issues faced by society.


As a digital workplace solution provider, Konica Minolta helps its clients to identify and unlock the potential digitalisation holds and reach the next level in the digital maturity of their organisation by rethinking the workplace. In support of an ‘Intelligent connected workplace’, Konica Minolta offers cloud, IT, managed print and video solution services for remote working, collaboration, workflow management and automation and security. The company’s success in driving transformation is also confirmed by IDC, since the ‘IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Print Transformation 2023 Vendor Assessment’ has named Konica Minolta a “Leader” in print transformation. Konica Minolta has been a Microsoft Global Managed Partner since 2021.


Konica Minolta's Igniting Print Possibilities offering helps printers, converters and brand owners maximise workflow automation to increase efficiency. The company delivers consultancy in all communication matters as well as top-of-the-line production, packaging as well as label printers. Its finishing devices create print products that stand out and create added value. Konica Minolta has established itself as the production printing market leader for more than a decade in Europe (InfoSource).


For an increasing number of organisations, success today is more than the narrow definition of financial prosperity – it also includes protecting the environment and having a positive impact on their workforce as well as the societies they are embedded in. With its commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Konica Minolta has pledged to consistently pursue its sustainability and social responsibility goals.


The company has been repeatedly recognised for its rich history of social contribution as well as for working towards achieving the SDGs throughout its business and supply chain. Konica Minolta received a GOLD Level Recognition Medal in the EcoVadis sustainability ratings for 2024.


For its remote services, Konica Minolta was awarded the prestigious ‘Buyers Lab (BLI) 2023-2024 Pacesetter Award in Remote Service for the Western European market’ from Keypoint Intelligence.


Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe is represented by subsidiaries and distributors in more than 80 countries in Europe, Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. With more than 8,800 employees (as of April 2024), Konica Minolta Europe earned net sales of over EUR 2.13 billion in financial year 2023/2024.


Worldwide, the company has over 39,000 employees and is operating in over 150 countries.


For more information, please visit https://www.konicaminolta.eu/eu-en/news and follow Konica Minolta on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.


Terms and product names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders and are hereby acknowledged.

Contact

Contact

Melanie Olbrich

Senior Expert Content Strategy & Development, Corporate Communications

melanie.olbrich@konicaminolta.eu

051174045337