OMNIA Partners Blog

Rethinking the Future of Work

Posted by Konica Minolta on October 09, 2020

 How we are working now and where we will go in the future will depend on the readiness of companies to re-look at their business and redefine their models for maximum productivity. We have seen three trends that are important to consider in this Digital Transformation / Review for Readiness – as we are not likely to go back to the model that we had pre-pandemic: Remote Work Readiness, Returning to Work Safely, Rethinking Operations.

Konica Minolta understands that the world of work is changing fast. Through their program, members of OMNIA Partners will have all the tools needed in adapting to this new environment.

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IDC predicts a 100% increase in employees working remotely from pre-pandemic to post-pandemic.

--Amy Loomis, IDC analysis, in Reimaging the Future of Work
– a Glimpse into 2021 & Beyond, Sept. 23, 2020 Virtual Event.


As the statistics demonstrate, businesses have been thrust into a work environment that they did not anticipate. The pandemic has brought “Disaster Preparedness” protocols from out of the depths of some companies’ business continuity playbook and exposed the lack of preparedness other companies had with recovery.


Here, we have not seen the destruction of physical assets as we do with a natural disaster like fire, flood and hurricane, but the challenge of information access along with the question about security.


Remote Work Readiness has to address people, process and tools. Without thinking about all three, a business is not ready. Some questions that come to mind are:

  • Are we set up for our employees to get into the business applications & systems that they need?
  • What kind of access do they need and can we provide it?
  • What is their work-from-home environment and how can I not only make sure they have the tools that they need, but also be assured that we don’t leave the door open for security gaps?


You might be thinking:  My system is running now, and it is working just fine, so you think…  IT equipment and software can become outdated and vulnerable quickly, with costly, difficult-to-manage upgrades that may be necessary.  Depending on your current IT situation, you may also find that your data storage requirements can’t handle the needs of your business. You just may not be set up as you need to be and to give your employees the access they need to do their jobs.


Remote work requires all of us to step back and take a closer look at our IT needs to ensure we can continue – long term – to enable our employees to work productively.


Security is another major concern regarding home workers, as the risk for malware, hacks and other vulnerabilities increase as the user gains access to enterprise, often confidential, information through residential network technology. Is the user utilizing a virtual private network? Are their endpoint devices secure? Is information at risk?

40% of clients are breached through malware

Home Assurance is Konica Minolta’s solution to layered security for companies who need to protect their remote employees and the connection they use to access the business resources necessary to do their job. From help desk support to end-point encryption, we make sure that you are properly addressing security for your current state and as you rethink your future state – for returning to work.


What does that Return to Work model look like? Currently, many organizations have begun bringing employees back to work onsite – albeit many on a voluntary basis. As a result, we have seen a significant challenge putting sufficient and functional protocols in place. The goal will be for businesses to demonstrate effective employee safety measures, while recording the data they need to track cases and provide real-time reporting to the necessary recipients.


At Konica Minolta, our Return to Work solution was specifically designed with the CDC guidelines in mind. Each day, all our employees complete a Virtual Health Check and our system automatically advises on whether they are authorized to come onsite to work. This process can be completed on any device including a smart phone and only takes a few minutes for a response. While you may not think reporting an unusual headache would result in advice to stay home – we are all on heightened alert for possible COVID-19 symptoms and prefer to keep each other safe.


With the flu season on the horizon, organizations must be diligent. At our corporate headquarters we use a MOBOTIX Thermal Camera as a first level of screening to take the employee’s surface temperature and if it falls outside of the acceptable range – our company nurse is at hand to take the next step – a second level temperature reading with a touchless thermometer – in a private room.


Privacy often is a concern when we speak to customers about their Return to Work strategy which may lead some customers to only desire the Virtual Health Check functionality. For the organizations that wish to record and monitor employees regardless of where they work – we have an Incident Management Tool to enable the easy reporting and contact tracing.


While we all cannot predict when the pandemic will be over, Konica Minolta has supplied sufficient processes that will benefit us in the long run. We will keep our employees safe for the future of work.


We would be remiss if we didn’t say a few words about the physical office location trend.

  • We DO think there will be more remote workers in the future
  • We DO think monitoring and tracking functionality are needed for RTW.
  • We ALSO think that the work environment is going to look a lot different.

Companies have already started to rethink their office locations and where they should focus their core efforts. This has fueled our third trend – which has been an increase in outsourcing for non-core needs.

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We have seen vigorous activity around the rapid adoption of digitizing mailrooms, as much as email has supplanted physical mail, the U.S. Postal Service and shipping carriers have not ceased operations. With a team in place to digitize the mailroom and provide chain of custody solutions, you can be anywhere and not worry about physical mail and packages piling up on desks and docks.


The digital mailroom includes the option of contactless delivery of mail and packages with Intelligent Lockers. In addition, if you are an organization that still produces significant volumes of print material – like a hospital or financial institution – efficiencies in the print shop can be improved.


By optimizing your onsite non-core business functions, Konica Minolta will provide the expertise of specialists to create process efficiencies and cost savings so you can focus on your core business. Today, there are probably many additional areas where outsourcing makes sense as businesses take a closer look at their operations: Print Services, Shipping & Receiving, Office Operations, Lobby Management, Courier Service, Loading Dock or Conference Room/Hospitality Management.


We think this trend goes hand-in-hand with the push toward making changes in the future business model – really rethinking how you operate today or how you WILL operate going forward.


IDC believes we’ll see hoteling shared workspaces in offices as more workers make a remote location their primary workplace and only need to ‘check-out’ a workspace in their office when they need to come in. This is going to perpetuate even more virtual experiences, virtual selling and the need to have an agile environment – as with using the Cloud vs on premise servers.


It is a lot to think about, and you may already have noted the gaps in your work environment with so many remote workers.   Whatever your needs – we think of our trends along with key benefits are key considerations for you as you Rethink your Future of Work.

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Link for Virtual Event

Available through OMNIA Partners, Konica Minolta offers members an expansive product portfolio of Management Print Services, Content Management Solutions, IT Services and Marketing Services. Contact Us for more information.

Topics: Group Purchasing Organization, Supply Chain Management, Procurement, IT & Telecom, Information Technology, gpo