Goals and expectations for customers’ technology enabled rooms and tech utilization should be considered before planning begins. Knowing what success will look like is imperative. Establishing how to monitor and measure that success is equally as important.
Progress reporting on metrics allows for any necessary alterations or improvements after implementation. Metrics should be established based on what is meaningful to the organization, along with knowing how the organization assesses ROI.
Once metrics are decided, the next step is to set benchmarks for each. You might have to look at past projects to set some starting figures. Then, begin monitoring. It’s best to be proactive in gathering results rather than waiting for anecdotal feedback.
This being said, such feedback can be very helpful because it often provides insight into intangible value. Some tangible measures that can be tracked include:
1. The number and frequency of meetings
- What is the technology enabled rooms utilization rate?
- How many meetings take place in each room?
- Are teams favoring rooms that have specific technology?
- If you implement new meeting room technology, does the organization’s usage of those meeting room spaces increase?
- If they have some meeting rooms without technology, has their use declined dramatically?
For real-time statistics, room scheduling systems can track activity and frequency based on user IDs. If clients don’t have scheduling technology, setting up an online booking system or a simple survey may reveal new meeting patterns.
2. Development efficiencies
- How long did it take to complete a project or get a new product to market in the past?
- If teammates start using collaborative spaces and technology, are projects being completed more rapidly?
- Have some development costs or rework costs been avoided because more cross-department collaboration is catching possible issues sooner?
Reduction in development time can be measured in part by the salaries of those involved and the time spent on the project.
3. Reduction in the number of iterations and tests
- How many prototypes are required to get to a final result?
- How much money is being spent on testing, trials or external evaluations?
This metric focuses on the hard costs of these activities. If better collaboration can speed development through less iteration, there are real savings to be realized on prototypes or other tests. This is hopefully a straightforward calculation of savings.
4. User satisfaction
Many consider satisfaction to be an intangible measure; however, there are ways to administer regular surveys that can include satisfaction scales and comment boxes.
- What are users saying about the functionality of the meeting rooms?
- Are users voicing complaints or sharing accolades, and is one or the other increasing?
- Similar to the usage questions, why are technology enabled rooms being booked or avoided?
Technology and meeting room spaces spaces that are easy to use, designed to the task, and are comfortable will generate positive results. Consider surveys that ask about and grade user acceptance, ease of use and overall satisfaction.
Ask for recommendations for improvement and accomplishments resulting from collaborative discussions.
Measure, Then Improve
Monitor results regularly, especially user feedback, so improvements can be made. It’s also good to map data trends over time to demonstrate impact. Even if you started with uncertain benchmarks, looking at the results on a rolling basis will establish firmer ground over time.
Consider meeting room space utilization as an example. If technology enabled rooms were in use 50% of their available time, set 75% as a goal.
If after three months the average utilization only grows to 60%, questions can be asked. You may discover there wasn’t enough training to make users confident, or there are missing features/capabilities that caused users not to return as frequently, or at all.
In the end, when meeting rooms facilitate collaboration sessions that become part of an organization’s culture, there should be noticeable and measurable productivity gains.