IACC External Meetings Demand Report 2022

Chapter 5: Conclusion and Recommendations This chapter will answer the research questions and the management question. For each research question, there are points of interest, which will be translated into recommendations, and will be included in the Advisory Report. 5.1 Answers and recommendations to the Research Questions During the conducted research, Project Group 10 came across the following findings which resulted into recommendation for IACC. Working from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. was once the standard, with employers offering very limited flexibility in where and when people worked. Managers are realising that many employees can work successfully anywhere, at any time, due to the pandemic. Companies have established a hybrid work model because of the influence of COVID-19, a sort of flexible working where employees divide their time between the workplace and working remotely, according to our research. When asked how they envisioned the future workplace, most survey respondents chose a hybrid model. Furthermore, several interviewees stated that the hybrid work approach gives them more flexibility, allowing them to achieve a better work-life balance. At the same time, the office work environment might take on a new purpose and meaning because of the changes brought about by a decentralised work environment. It could be utilised more as a meeting place or a place to re-energise and socialise with others. Employees continue to believe that meeting in person adds value that cannot be obtained through virtual meetings alone. Meeting participants still want and appreciate human interaction, however just not for every type of meeting or every day of the week. With the Decentralisation of the work environment and the beginning of remote working, the digitalisation of learning was a requirement for every company, thus, good technology is a crucial aspect regarding the needs and wants of the clients. Now, that employees have experienced the advantages of a hybrid work environment, some form of this will undoubtedly continue to be used after the pandemic. A recommendation for IACC’s venues is to create flexible meeting spaces, to propose different work environments, and help generate productivity and collaboration between their guests. Another recommendation would be for venues to invest in state-of-the-art technology, for a meeting to be successful technology is of the essence, this will support hybrid teams and promote flexibility. In addition, it will aid the connection between remote and in-person meeting participants. Since the outbreak of the pandemic, there has been a tremendous increase in the need for more immersive technology to bridge the gap between people who work in offices and those who work from home. Meeting venues nowadays must find the right solutions and services to support blended and hybrid teams to increase productivity. While in-person meetings will continue to be popular, hybrid and virtual meetings are becoming increasingly valuable, depending on the meeting's purpose. Face-to-face meetings, such as team building meetings, are preferred over online meetings because participants can read each other's body language, intentions, and feelings in ways that are impossible to do virtually. At the same time, the pandemic has also forced companies and individual employees to reconsider the value and cost ratio of organising and attending in-person meetings. They have become more conscious of the effects their meetings have on the environment a nd their safety, asking themselves the question, ‘is in -person attendance necessary with the availability of video conferencing?’. With companies becoming generally more aware of the effects that their operations have on the environment, business travel and the number of in-



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