Smart buildings create the offices and working methods of the future

Innovative solutions and smart technology can increase the well-being of your people—while simultaneously reducing both environmental impact and energy costs.

As part of its innovation work, Coor seeks out innovative solutions that increase the energy efficiency of existing buildings while simultaneously making the working day as healthy and easy as possible for office users. This creates the sustainable workplaces and buildings of the future.

The office of the future — more than just a workplace

The layout of your office is a factor in determining how attractive potential employees consider your workplace to be, while also ensuring that existing employees stay with the company.

“It can be a challenge to find the right competences, and should an individual find themselves choosing between two similar jobs, with similar assignments and salary, the physical workplace can become the decisive factor. If you offer an effective office space that supports the tasks that need to be carried out, your employees will appreciate it,” Mattias Wahlgren, Group Innovation Manager at Coor explains.

He also believes that the office of the future will increasingly become more of a meeting place, where employees go to socialize and find inspiration.

“Today, most people can work effectively online almost anywhere. In some cases, their work actually becomes even more efficient when working remotely, but nothing contributes to building relationships like meeting in person. And eventually I think we’ll be wanting to attract people back into the office,” Mattias explains.

When that time comes, it will be important to have an inviting office. Mattias is convinced that we’ll see an increased focus on creative and customized workplaces in the future. He also believes that innovation will play an important part in increasing employee well-being.

“In many cases, the offices of the future will provide a better indoor climate and better air quality than employees’ own homes. Technical solutions will provide offices with exactly the right degree of humidity, temperature, sound and light—which in turn optimizes the work experience.

A great indoor environment is important for ensuring employee well-being, and Coor’s service IOT SmartSpaces uses sensors to measure anything from carbon dioxide to smells—which improves air quality in the office. Alongside the company Naava, Coor offers digitally connected Green walls, that purify the air and increase humidity.

“We tend to feel calmer and more harmonious with greenery and plants around us. And when employees feel good they also perform better,” Mattias explains.

He also highlights SmartAmbience, a service that Coor has developed alongside Epidemic Sound. SmartAmbience allows companies to tailor-make the sound experience in areas such as break rooms, reception and in office landscapes.

“Music has a huge impact on our unconscious mind and can improve the office environment significantly. This service won IFMA Nordic’s award for best Facility Management innovation last year, which is particularly pleasing. But we also have lots of other exciting technology solutions,” Mattias explains.

Sustainable buildings improve the environment

There’s no doubt that tech solutions will shape the offices of the future. Smart innovation also allows businesses to optimize their energy costs and minimize the environmental impact.

“Our solutions significantly increase efficiency. We’re able to reduce energy consumption by up to 40% while the user experience is also improved. It’s also clear that businesses are becoming increasingly environmentally conscious,” Mattias explains.

Coor in Denmark has successfully increased the energy efficiency of buildings and offices by applying the Coor concept SmartBuildings. Installing an online energy management system allows Coor to help companies gain an overview of power and water consumption.

“The system makes it easy to monitor the company’s consumption in real time. This means that you immediately notice divergent patterns, and can work proactively to address them. For example, you are able to see that a filter in the ventilation system needs to be replaced before any damage is done. This technology shows in advance when servicing is needed, and helps companies to save money,” Thomas Fog, Business Unit Director, IFM & Property Division at Coor Denmark explains.

Innovation shapes the offices and working methods of the future

Thomas explains that alongside collaboration partner IQ Energy Nordic, Coor is the market leader in the Nordics in measuring and increasing energy efficiency in buildings and offices. This technology has several different applications—and will be of major significance in developing the offices and working methods of the future.

“At present, we’ve installed the solution in most of our largest customers’ premises, and I think interest will increase,” Thomas continues. 

Technology can also be used to show how an office space is being used. Thomas explains that customers often say that ”they don’t have enough meeting rooms”, but by using sensors Coor can help companies to measure the rate of occupancy in various spaces and optimize them accordingly—which allows them to avoid paying for extra office space or to start looking for new premises.

Thomas is convinced that the smart buildings and workplaces of the future will show how resources are used and influence staff habits.

“This will be much more influential than we can imagine. I don’t think people are aware of how much energy we waste at present, and our innovative solutions will make it possible to see and prevent this,” he concludes.