Prior to the pandemic, some companies and industries were more prepared for work from home and hybrid working than others. However, when Covid-19 hit what was considered unimaginable had to be turned into the usual practically overnight.
Technology and the internet have played a pivotal role in this transformation. In fact, none of this would have been possible just a few decades ago. Technologies that facilitate home office and hybrid working options have naturally experienced a boom during this period. One of them was voice technology. The cloud-based solution Philips SpeechLive alone has doubled its users in the first year of the pandemic and rapidly gained additional features allowing for even better collaboration.
These technologies have certainly disrupted our work lives. However, the question remains: will these newly formed habits stay with us in 2023 or are we going back to our pre-pandemic ways of working? We asked our voice tech experts around the world to share their thoughts.
Yvonne Kirsch, Vice President and Director of Sales, Philips Speech North America:
The recent events have definitely changed workplace habits permanently. Most businesses had to adapt to remote working and the use of technology to collaborate. Improving efficiency has also had a huge take up. I believe we will see more hybrid working and a continued evaluation on new technologies, especially cloud solutions in the future. There are so many fantastic tools out there, now it’s about finding the best fit for each company’s need.
Paul Russel, Philips Speech Live Ambassador also reflected on the role SpeechLive has played during these times and what it has in store for the future:
The cool thing about SpeechLive is it’s always growing & evolving. I see it not only continuing leading the way for remote workflow but also becoming a leader in speech to text as well! Definitely an exciting future!
Angela Alliger, Head of Customer Success, Philips Speech Germany:
The Covid-19 crisis has led to a push towards digitalization, which has been seen as a very positive development by many companies. Prior to the pandemic many of industries we work together with, including the legal sector, had considered flexible working arrangements as rather unimaginable for a long time, and then suddenly it changed overnight. However, we also see that there is still room for improvement. A customer survey conducted by Philips Speech in the DACH region clearly shows that technologies that support work from home are becoming increasingly important, along with IT security as well as document creation with speech recognition. This means that in 2022, the focus will be on addressing all these issues and helping our customers achieve greater satisfaction and success through digitalization with voice technology. We are seeing this trend towards voice technology moving from our core markets to many other sectors, and this too will continue. I recently came across the following quote, “Wer neue Wege gehen will, muss ohne Wegweiser zurechtkommen.“ Which means in English, “Those who want to break new ground must do so without directions.” This isn’t the case with us though. We accompany our customers along the way – from consultation through testing to installation and training.
Caroline Cantelon, Sales Management, Philips Speech North America:
Over the last 2 and a half years many organizations have implemented technologies that have made it much easier for staff to work remotely. These include cloud technologies and hosted solutions that can be accessed from anywhere. In addition, platforms such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams have become the norm in providing a way to communicate and hold meetings with a face to face component. Many organizations have realized that implementing these technologies has proven to provide efficiency while offering a hybrid working solution to staff.
This has allowed many to be using commute time more effectively as well as offering better work-life balance. Although many of these technologies took some time to take hold and implement, many organizations now realize the overhead associated with office space may indeed be reduced in the future. It has been said by many company leaders that while we were not prepared for remote work nor had we entertained the idea previous to COVID, we cannot deny that technology has offered us many options to provide staff while still maintaining productivity in a changing world.
Lionel Suzat, Sales Manager, Philips Speech France:
The pandemic has changed our work habits, as well as our document creation tools. Our customers had to adapt in a hurry and our voice technology tools have greatly contributed to facilitate the implementation of home offices, for example, and have allowed us to meet an unusual need for mobility, to ensure the continuity of their work. It’s clear that they won’t go back… Sometimes extraordinary situations require us to adapt quickly, for a certain benefit in the end.
Let’s continue the path of technology adoption that makes it possible for the office world to work, connect, learn and communicate in ever changing ways and see what it has in store for us in 2023. What technology adoption stories would you have to share? We are always happy to hear from you!