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3 Ways Workplace Tech Will Continue to Evolve in 2024

Audiovisual March 6, 2024

As a veteran IT leader, I spend a fair amount of time talking to tech executives. In those conversations, a few themes regularly surface at the intersection of IT and audiovisual solutions. So, when AVI Systems asked me to contribute to their blog, I saw it as an opportunity to share some trend predictions with other IT leaders. Following are three ways workplace tech will continue to evolve in 2024 and beyond.


#1: AI user adoption will become more mainstream

We can’t talk about tech evolution without starting with the topic of AI. While certain forms of AI have existed for decades, generative AI came into full force over the last year. In 2024, we’ll continue to see AI in the headlines, generative AI will become more commercialized, and we’ll also see more widespread user adoption.  

Regarding impact, I don't think AI will get to that Gartner Plateau of Productivity this year – that’s still a few years out. That said, it’s still going to be talked about, and we’ll see more proof of concept and new products centered around artificial intelligence. For example, I recently met with a group of local CIOs, and the first question was: “Who’s doing a proof of concept with Microsoft Copilot?”   

As AI relates to audiovisual tools and technologies, we already see it used for recordings and intelligent meeting summaries. This will continue to get more and more sophisticated, with more video conferencing features and functions being added. In addition, I expect to see significant improvements in features such as speaker facial recognition and automated camera reframing that improve the video conference experience. 

Finally, I can’t close off my thoughts on AI without encouraging tech leaders to ensure they’re creating guidance or policies for their organizations about using AI. This is especially critical regarding generative AI and the risk of accidentally sharing confidential information in their prompts. 

#2: Platforms will address interoperability, usability challenges

I’ll confess upfront that this one is part prediction and part hopeful thinking. As I look a year out, I think unified collaboration and video conferencing platforms will begin to address some of their interoperability and usability challenges.  

On the interoperability front, I’ve talked with several CIOs and technology leaders who struggle with the same challenge. They feel the need to choose one collaboration platform per conference room because it’s hard to get the full functionality of multiple platforms in the same room. And they want it to be effortless from a user experience standpoint for people to join any meeting using any platform.  

A related usability challenge is how platforms like Zoom and Microsoft Teams are missing an opportunity to address how modern meetings actually work. For example, why don't users have the option to accept a meeting notice and indicate whether they’ll attend in person or virtually? Taking this idea further, why don’t meeting platforms have the option to intelligently select a conference room based on the number of people who will attend in person or virtually? Or to select the audiovisual tools and technology based on the meeting type or desired outcome?  

We expect many of the most popular platforms to address these gaps soon.

#3: Spaces will be redesigned to optimize new tech and AV capabilities

Finally, when I think about what’s coming in terms of AV, I predict that the spaces we use for meetings and videoconferences will adapt to emerging capabilities. For example, most conference rooms today are long, with displays at one end and cameras at the other.  

This layout doesn’t work well for hybrid meetings. So, we rely on new tools like Smart Gallery and Intelligent Director to automatically create individual video feeds for each participant, which improves meeting equity and delivers a better hybrid experience. But these tools only get us part of the way there.  

I think we’ll begin to see more spaces designed with features like Intelligent Director in mind rather than the other way around. This could include everything from curved tables to multiple displays, strategically placed cameras, integrated touchscreen controls, and beamforming microphones.  

In addition, there will be a renewed focus on the workplace aesthetic and providing more of an experience than employees can achieve at home. This could include room features like acoustics and lighting, or other touches that make meeting rooms feel special (e.g., unique architectural elements).   

Finally, if you’ve yet to adapt your meeting room technology for the modern workplace, a future-proof option is to consider a subscription model rather than an outright purchase. This way, you have an Opex line item rather than a capital expense. Even better, you won’t have to keep investing and upgrading your equipment regularly to stay relevant and current – that’s built right into the model.

How technology supports workplace culture

Technology leaders must be honest about something as companies look for ways to bring people back to the office. Nobody wants to use outdated, antiquated technology, whether at their desk or in a conference room. 

Great technology makes it easier for people to do their jobs. It also helps companies advance important cultural goals such as inclusivity and innovation and attract and retain the best and brightest employees. 

Rather than requiring people to come into the office, a more successful approach entices them and creates a seamless transition between home and office.  

As technology leaders, we’re uniquely positioned to deliver a compelling user experience and to align home and office workflows. As we build our go-forward plans, let’s remember the impact that our technology decisions have on employees in the modern workplace.

Guest blogger bio: Rachel Lockett is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional and has been in Information Technology leadership for more than 25 years. In 2020, she won the Twin Cities CIO of the Year ORBIE Award and is the author of the book The Technology Doesn't Matter: Prioritizing the People in IT Business Alignment.


©AVI Systems, Inc., 2024


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