What will meetings look like in 2021?

If there’s one thing the Covid-19 pandemic has made us realise, it’s how much we need face-to-face meetings.

There’s something about seeing people in person that virtual meetings can never replicate – despite the technology having been useful during the ongoing lockdowns.

Before the pandemic, flexible and remote working was the new trend for many businesses. Now the entire workforce has had experience of working remotely, it has made even the most enthusiastic supporters realise the importance of approaching a situation directly.

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Post-Covid meetings

While virtual meetings have their place, physical meetings will always be an important part of everyday working life and companies would be wise to take both options into account when planning for the future.

Analysts are predicting a significant shift in the way meetings are run in a post-Covid world. Companies will need to find a way to balance remote and in-office work. The meeting rooms need to include productive working space for both the delegates in the room and for those joining remotely via a video link.

During the past year, we’ve relied on the latest technology, including collaboration software, to run meetings. Although this has helped workers to stay connected, everyone is hoping we might regain some semblance of normality in the new year.

Coronavirus vaccine impact

Business leaders are hoping the launch of the new coronavirus vaccine earlier in December might help us to get back to work during the next 12 months. The first person in the world to receive the vaccine, on Tuesday 8th December, was 90-year-old British grandmother Margaret Keenan.

In the first week of it becoming available, 137,000 Brits received a dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, produced by Pfizer/BioNTech. The majority were NHS staff, people aged over 80 and care home workers at 70 sites across the country. Experts have said it could take a few weeks for the vaccine to build up enough immunity in an individual.

Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock has said the vaccination programme will continue to expand. However, he hasn’t placed a timeframe on exactly how long it will be before it’s available to all UK residents. Professor Ugur Sahin, the co-founder of BioNTech, has speculated that the impact of the vaccine is likely to be felt in summer 2021, with life getting back to some kind of normality by next autumn.

Although this reduces risks and will have a significant impact on meetings once it’s available to the wider public, in the interim we must continue to practice social distancing and other safety measures in the working environment.

Safe meeting spaces

This will mean creating a meeting space that’s conducive to productive working for both in-person and remote attendees. To return to the premise that in-person meetings will always prevail, we must also accept that not everyone will be able to attend just yet.

The latest technology will continue to enable meetings to take place and must be as simple as connecting from a laptop at home. Meeting spaces must remain as friction-free as possible to ensure the best and most productive experience for all delegates.

Booking a meeting room away from the normal workplace in 2021 will continue to ensure the relevant Covid-19 safety procedures are still being maintained. It will also mean you’ll benefit from up-to-date technology, making your experience as smooth and productive as possible.

Room usage can be optimised, so every inch of space and every second of booking time can be put to good use. The infection control measures that are in place, including professional cleaning teams to sanitise the room, will reduce the risks for users until such time as the government’s health advisors tell us we’re safe again.

When you book a meeting room through &Meetings, we’ll give you a free upgrade on room size to help with social distancing measures. Browse our portfolio of meeting venues and book now online to take advantage of our great pricing and individual room selection. Be assured, your safety is our priority.

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