Many companies are seeking solutions on how to make their workplace environments more connected and intelligent. The good news is Bluetooth beacons can be leveraged in several strategic ways that integrate well with other digital solutions. This offers a wide variety of future capabilities to employees and facility teams in planning how they can enhance their systems and products. With a bright feature ahead, plenty of providers have been strategizing on how to deploy beacons as a workplace solution. Through IoT (Internet of Things) devices, new ideas and features are possible, which can create a more connected and intelligent workplace.
- Misconceptions About Beacons
One major misconception about beacons is they collect and track information about people. That is not true as beacons do not gather personal data from someone’s mobile device and store it for tracking purposes. Another common misconception is that beacons have low battery life. In fact, the battery of certain beacons can last three to five years. Longer battery life is possible by utilizing Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), or by limiting its signal range. A wider signal range will consume more battery life, so it is important to keep in mind that the range of beacon can vary from two to eighty meters.
- Basic Capabilities of Beacons
Beacons transmit a signal, which is picked up by a smart device. The smart device references the beacon’s ID and then data is sent to the smart device. When this signal is sent, the user is in control of whether an interaction will occur and is prompted the choice to opt-in before an interaction is allowed. Some beacons require an app for advanced interaction, but basic URL beacon support is on the rise.
- How Beacons in The Workplace Serve Both Employees and Visitors
A popular workplace feature for beacons is to utilize their indoor location technology in employee wayfinding. Larger offices see this as a potential benefit as multiple beacons can work together to determine location more accurately. Interestingly, the level of accuracy indoors among various floors can be higher compared to GPS, cell tower triangulation, and Wi-Fi proximity. Employees can benefit as it can make it easier for them to navigate through the office – finding meeting rooms, break rooms, and restrooms. Beacons can start to allow employees to spend more time being productive and less time wandering around. Other employee benefit ideas have been around notifications of availability of conference rooms, as well as knowing when people are in or out of the room. Office lights can potentially be switched off automatically through the use of beacons as well. Colleagues in different buildings could start to be located, while beacons placed in the office property can help deter theft. Beacons placed on shuttle buses can start to notify riders if one is nearby. And in a campus situation, employees or visitors can learn more about various interesting facts or be prompted with cool tips as they explore.
- Benefits of Beacons
The benefits of beacons are growing with more companies putting innovative thought behind them since they promote productivity with more personalization. They could help drive down future costs by getting to know employee preferences, habits, and other useful statistics. Important data that beacons could start to help track are employee and visitor clock in and out times, and metrics on bookings and room usage. Location data is useful once analyzed, as office layout can be improved to take advantage of where employees spend most of their time. Beacons Offer A Way Forward The points covered above show how Bluetooth beacons are fostering great innovative thought around the future of companies office environments. Beacons are versatile, a smart solution that integrates well with various IoT products, making them ideal for the connected workplace environment of the future. Beacons combined with innovative thinking helps to break through boundaries and sidestep limitations!