Skip to main content

What Comes Next: How tech is helping offices and workplaces reopen

In our new series “What Comes Next,” Riley Winn takes a look beyond the current state of COVID-19 at the steps businesses are taking as we move into the next phase of reopening. What happens when employees re-enter the workplace? How can we share office space and still feel safe? What are the measures businesses will be taking to ensure everyone’s safety? Winn takes a look at several different scenarios, some of which are already taking place around the world.

“Owners and management have to make sure their employees feel safe — and are safe — when showing up each day, and many businesses are leaning on tech to help out,” Winn says. Even something as mundane as using the elevator may encompass technology like the holographic floor buttons being used in Eastern China. Businesses may use no-contact thermometers to measure the temperatures of employees and customers. Companies like Amazon are implementing digital distancing monitors and cameras where employees can see if they are maintaining distances in high-traffic areas, as well as other wearables that will notify workers if they are getting too close.

On the low-tech side, office buildings may have directional arrows on the floor to move foot traffic in a way that maintains social distancing guidelines. Businesses may stagger which desks are open for use and which are to be avoided to maintain appropriate spacing, and cubicles may have plastic shields installed in between workers and between workers and customers. Hand sanitizing stations, of course, will be prevalent.

Watch other episodes to see how tech is helping keep us safe at:

Winn continues, “One thing that a lot of companies have realized during this pandemic is they don’t need offices as much as they thought. Twitter and Amazon have told their employees that they can work from home until they feel safe to come back into the office.” Zoom and other video conferencing apps will become more of the norm, and for many, “the commute to work for the foreseeable future could be just from the bed to the couch.”

Finally, Winn concludes, “after coronavirus, work will never look the same.” It will take some time to adapt and get used to the new routines of post-pandemic work.

Editors' Recommendations

Todd Werkhoven
Todd Werkhoven's work can be read at numerous publications and he co-authored a personal finance book called "Zombie…
When is Prime Day 2023? Dates confirmed for the shopping event
Best Prime Day 2022 Deals graphic with multiple products.

After weeks of speculation, we finally know when Prime Day 2023 is kicking off. Amazon has announced that the event will start July 11 at 3AM ET and will run through July 12. As always, Prime members can score some fantastic deals from the sale with popular brands like Peloton, Victoria's Secret, YETI, and Sony just some of the names being touted by Amazon as featuring in the big sale. Members will also be able to shop more deals on small business products than ever before too. As always, expect great discounts on Amazon-owned properties like Kindles, Ring doorbells, Amazon Echo units, and so much more. It's the sale we've all been waiting for since Black Friday.

The Prime Day deals promise to drop every 30 minutes during select periods with deep discounts expected. Select discounts on other Amazon-related things are already available such as 20% off in-store purchases at

Read more
Another big sale is happening at the same time as Prime Day
A variety of electronic devices in open boxes.

Target just revealed that Target Circle Week will run from July 9 to July 15, overlapping with Amazon's Prime Day that's scheduled for July 11 to July 12.

The big sale event will be open to members of the retailer's Target Circle loyalty program, who will be able to receive discounts of up to 50% for certain items. If you're not yet a member, don't worry -- you can join at any time, and membership is free. Once you've signed up, you'll be able to earn 1% from every purchase to redeem at a later time, access exclusive deals, and get 5% off for your birthday, among other benefits.

Read more
The best free parental control software for PC, Mac, iOS, and Android
Man using computer.

Everything in this world has gone digital, and that includes homework (if you have kids). If your children are young, you’re probably not giving them laptops or free rein of the family computer yet. You’re also probably not always able to monitor their screen activity, either.

That’s where parental control software comes in handy. Such software helps keep your kids safe from the dark web, and there are usually free options available for all operating systems. Keep reading to find out more.
Built-in OS features
Giving your kids technology designed for their age group is an excellent first step toward keeping them safe online. When they have access to more general computing devices, you can leverage parental control features built right into the operating system. The parental controls for both Windows and macOS provide a convenient and acceptable means for restricting web access and chat functionality, and give parents the ability to view detailed logs and monitor email exchanges.
Microsoft Family Safety

Read more