Clutter has become one of the unexpected consequences of the shift to hybrid work styles. Once, a computer desk simply had the computer sitting on it. Now, however, professionals are looking to improve the experience when working from their devices, and so are investing in accessories like cameras and sound equipment, headsets and even servers and UPS devices, to maximise the efficiency of their workloads and to help reduce the risk of outage.
They’re expecting the same functionality from their devices in the office, too. Now that video collaboration and working in the cloud is more commonplace than ever, employees need their work spaces updated to accommodate.
However, breakthrough research in 2019 highlighted the cost of having a cluttered working environment. As reported in HBR at the time: “Our physical environments can significantly influence our cognition, emotions, and behaviour, affecting our decision-making and relationships with others.
“A study on the effects of clutter in the home found that individuals who felt overwhelmed by the amount of ‘stuff’ in their homes were more likely to procrastinate.”
In other words, finding ways to declutter the environment, without compromising on the functionality and enabling the benefits of a hybrid approach to work, can lead to meaningfully improved productivity outcomes.
Making the monitor a hub
Samsung’s approach to decluttering starts at the monitor. Its S4 Webcam Monitor (LS24A400VEEXXY) , for example, aims to integrate as many professional-quality features as possible into the design of the unit itself. A built-in webcam and microphone broadcasts at high definition for collaboration and communication. Many are wary of built-in webcams because of the security risks involved with having a camera that cannot be disconnected and put away, but the Samsung monitor’s camera can be stored away within the unit when not in use for the purposes of privacy.
Sound is also important to the communication and collaboration experience. Research found that low quality sound equipment and “fuzzy” meetings costs the average office worker 29 minutes of productivity each week. Beyond that, poor quality sound has been linked to a form of fatigue, colloquially known as “Zoom fatigue,” and that further impacts on focus and, ultimately, productivity.
This has caused a flurry of people rushing out to buy soundbars and high-quality headsets, adding to the clutter. It is for this reason that Samsung has implemented high-quality speakers into the S4 Webcam Monitor, allowing users to hear the meeting content with ease, without needing dedicated sound equipment.
For those accessories and applications that cannot be implemented into the monitor directly, Samsung has designed the S4 Webcam Monitor to act as a discrete hub. Connectivity ports including a 1xD-sub, 1xDP, 1xHDMI and 2xUSB allow users to connect just about any device to the monitor, helping to facilitate hybrid work by allowing for the seamless movement between laptop, mobile and desktop, and decluttering by allowing the professional to consolidate all cords and other connection points to a single “hub” device.
Decluttering a space boosts productivity. When you’re not wading through papers or trying to sort through innumerable cords to find the correct connection, you can get work done more quickly. This is especially relevant for the hybrid worker, who will want to come into either the office or home office, plug their laptop in, and seamlessly pick up where they left off.
To help facilitate this, the S4 Webcam Monitor features Windows Hello, allowing users to log in immediately with integrated facial recognition solution, cutting the time from when you sit down to when you’re ready to work to just a few seconds.
Then, to improve the general working experience, the S4 Webcam Monitor also features an IPS panel, allowing a clear view of the screen from any angle. This is a useful feature when it comes to collaboration, as it allows an individual to stand up, move around (to a whiteboard for brainstorming, for example), and still be able to view the people on the other side of the call.
As we discussed in the previous article, the changing nature of work and the shift to hybrid work has encouraged businesses and individuals to take a new look at their working environment. Many will be surprised at how effective the simple and subtle things – like finding the right monitor – can be at improving everything from mood to productivity.
For more information on Samsung’s suite of office products – including monitors – click here.