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Thursday, 16 August

Don't Get Hot, Get Smart

Sun is shining, weather is hot - smart sensors, what've you got?

During the heatwave, smart sensors are the secret weapon for maintaining staff productivity, writes Jeff Alden, Director of Operations at SPIE UK.

Britain’s record summer heatwave is expected to continue into August, while temperatures of above 30 degrees are forecast to return for the weekend - July 20-21.

While it has been enjoyable to bask in the summer weather outside of work, what impact is the heat having on our day-to-day working life and productivity levels? And could soaring temperatures in offices around the country be costing the economy money?

Ultimately, yes. Research suggests that an optimal office temperature of between 21 to 23 degrees Celsius provides the best air temperature for maximum office worker productivity, so very hot weather does have a huge detrimental impact on workers. Furthermore, around 70 per cent of workers are tempted to call in sick in hot weather, according to research from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.

So how can businesses ensure that they create a pleasant working environment so that staff can continue to work efficiently in this record breaking heat?

 

Smart sensors

Investment in technology is key, especially smart sensors in creating a working environment that promotes productivity. Some new solutions can already be seen in the most modern office buildings, where tasks that employees once had to do themselves are now fully automated. For example, the blinds on East facing windows are automatically lowered in the evening, temperature sensors are able to switch on the air units at night to keep the building cool without using too much electricity. Furthermore, smart sensors located throughout the workspace can collect data continuously.

This information on movement, temperature, and daylight incidence runs together on its own server and can be used for efficient facility management to keep the building at the optimum temperature for its occupants.

Lastly, rather than racking up expensive energy bills from workers trying to keep cool using solutions such as desk fans, by employing smart technology to keep workspaces cool, organisations can also reduce their spending and be more environmentally friendly.

Picture: Sun is shining, weather is hot - smart sensors, what've you got?

Article written by Jeff Alden

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