What’s the first thing you do when you get to the office? Chances are, it involves office technology.
A lot of the most common office technology trends come down to saving time and effort, which can help your business or your job go more smoothly as well as save your company or employer money in the long run.
Here are some of the latest trends in office technology that you should pay attention to and get familiar with if you haven’t already, plus an overview of what makes them special and useful so you can easily incorporate them into your daily routine at work or home.
1. VR Technology
Virtual reality (VR) technology has been around for a while, but it’s only recently that it’s started gaining real traction.
More and more companies are using VR technology, especially in industries like real estate where potential buyers can put themselves into realistic virtual scenarios.
The application of VR technology is limitless, and businesses are taking note. Take a look at our infographic about how VR is being used today and how you can get involved in its applications as soon as possible.
2. Robotic Process Automation
Robotic process automation (RPA) refers to software that uses artificial intelligence and is capable of automating high-volume, repeatable tasks across different systems.
This technology allows computers to analyze, respond, and act on information in a user’s electronic workflow without human intervention.
In other words, RPA frees humans from repetitive business processes so they can focus on more advanced tasks and tasks that require decision-making skills—like ones you’d find in management or senior leadership roles.
3. Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence is no longer a far-off vision of what’s coming. We’re already using it in our daily lives, even if we don’t realize it.
AI systems are better at recognizing patterns than humans are, making them more efficient at spotting potential security threats or tracing financial irregularities.
The only downside? They don’t always know that they aren’t human—which can lead to some pretty weird errors.
4. Machine Learning
One of today’s most cutting-edge office technologies is machine learning—the ability for computers to learn without being explicitly programmed.
While it used to be that computers required humans to input data, rules, and other instructions for proper operation, machines can now learn from human behavior and make decisions based on accumulated experience.
Machines equipped with machine learning can operate with little human supervision—and can even automate some of the tasks they were designed for in ways that even their creators might not have imagined.
This means employers will need people who are comfortable using new technology as opposed to relying on a specific set of instructions or code, making those with education like certificates or degrees in machine learning highly desirable. Employers might also find ways to use big data or machine learning at work.
5. Augmented Reality Technology
Augmented reality (AR) technology is a relatively new technology that allows real-world objects and settings to be overlaid with computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics, or GPS data.
For example, an AR headset can display a three-dimensional image of a building that exists on a developer’s server. When viewed through an AR headset, moving your head around in space and looking at details will reveal content about that particular building—what its hours are for business visitors; what forms of payment are accepted; where you should park.
In time, developers say they expect augmented reality headsets will become as common as smartphones are today. To stay on top of trends related to AR technology, follow companies like Microsoft, Google, and Metaio.