Voice in 2021
The New Way of Working
What We’ll See Next

In the coming year, we expect to see voice and audio technology advance the productivity landscape in a few notable areas:

An Assistant for Every Business

Although Microsoft and Amazon are building enterprise solutions for businesses, it is unlikely that they will be one-size-fits-all. We foresee a need for customized assistant technology that is tailored to an organization’s needs and vocabulary. Einstein may have missed the mark here, but we expect others to push onward. Considering the complexity of many companies, assistants will need to be able to understand specific requests, act on unique data sets and rules, and respond contextually to the process they are assisting with. Big tech companies’ voice solutions will likely stick around, but they may be integrated as a part of a larger holistic, bespoke assistant configuration for many businesses vs. being used as the stand-alone solution. 

Voice Integrations Drive Productivity

As more and more work and collaboration takes place over platforms like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Slack, etc., we expect that new voice and audio integrations will be pushed by mainstream platforms and upstarts alike to try and bridge the gap between remote working and in-person collaboration. Being able to quickly set-up meetings, share documents, provide comments on files, share information with a group, or verbally navigate software are all invaluable ways voice technology can contribute to the remote work experience. Although many startups are currently tackling aspects of this today, these tools have yet to gain widespread adoption. However, once layered directly on top of tools workers already have in their everyday routine, things can change.

The ‘New’ Office

As companies and organizations return to their workspaces, it will not be the same as when they left. As some who have returned to offices have already found out, new precautions around shared spaces and surfaces are now requirements. We see voice beginning to play an essential role in removing friction points around the physical workplace. From opening doors to managing conference room technology to enabling hands-free kitchen areas, the technology has potential to change how workers interact with their environments. 

More Voice Trends to Watch in 2021
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