In the final installment of our Networking for the Hybrid Work Era blog series, we dive into Cisco DNA Spaces and how it can help provide valuable location-based insights into the behavior of people and things to make workspaces safer and smarter.

As our return to the workplace progresses, it’s exciting to see empty spaces repopulated. Deserted streets and shuttered buildings are coming to life. But there’s apprehension, too. How do we keep our employees and guests safe, when getting close—even breathing in the same room—has become a risk? 

Today, the expectation that employers will take responsibility for optimizing health conditions in the workplace is firmly in place.  

The Cisco Global Workforce Survey (October 2020) found that 97% of employees want their employers to make changes that will keep them safe if they return to the office. Top requests include more sanitation (66%) and enforcement of social distancing in meeting rooms (58%) and elevators (58%). 

So, how can employers rise to the occasion? 

Turn on the lights for employee safety with digital insights 

Maintaining a healthy distance from others has become almost second nature now. You scan the elevator before entering to make sure you’re not going over the maximum recommended occupancy. When joining a line-up or looking for a seat, you make a mental note to leave 6 feet between yourself and the nearest person. 

Individually, it’s easy to see or hear who’s around us and adjust accordingly. But digitally, we’re still in the dark a lot of the time. What if there were a way to “see” where people are, not just in one room but in entire buildings, across offices, and between floors, to help maintain a safe density? 

If you’re a network manager, you’ve already got a solution—and it’s all around you. Your Wi-Fi is everywhere, and people are often carrying multiple devices that connect to it.  Now, take this incredible wealth of data pulled from employees, customers, and connected devices on your network. What if it could be collected, measured, and standardized to create actionable insights, like creating an alert in real time when a meeting room becomes too full? 

With the right mix of hardware and software in place, you can ‘turn on the lights’, digitally speaking, and have a complete picture of how people are distributed in a facility, even as they’re moving through it.  

Whether you’re working in an office, a hospital, a university, or a warehouse, you’ll have all the information you need to ensure safer work and inform business decisions. And you can respect users’ privacy by collecting a minimal amount of non-sensitive personal data.

Create smarter, safer, seamless workplaces with Cisco DNA Spaces 

Here at Cisco, we’re making use of just these kinds of data-informed, self-regulating spaces to maintain the health and wellness of employees and guests. Now live at more than 50,000 locations across 143 billion square feet, Cisco DNA Spaces is revolutionizing hybrid work. 

Part of our Networking Solutions for Hybrid Work, Cisco DNA Spaces not only allows you to accomplish physical distancing and density threshold monitoring, it also provides automated alerts and notifications, including proximity reports for affected locations, buildings, and floorsall conveniently displayed on a centralized, cloud-based dashboard. 

Using existing and new Cisco Catalyst or Meraki wireless deployments, you can capture an expansive digital view of your enterprise spaces that enables you to exceed employees’ safety expectations with consistency. At the same time, the data you collect is kept secure and confidential according to the Cisco DNA Privacy and Data Protection guidelines.  

When you add Cisco DNA Spaces to your existing Wi-Fi network, you’ll glean rich, real-time insights that empower your organization with capabilities like contact tracing, contactless experiences, and environmental monitoring. The good news? All existing and new Cisco wireless deployments support Cisco DNA Spaces – including Cisco Aironet, Catalyst, and Meraki – to help you get to the cloud as seamlessly as possible.

Try Cisco DNA Spaces free for 30 days or read the e-book Keep Your Hybrid Workplace Safe and Thriving with Networking Solutions to learn more. 


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Raakhee Mistry

Senior Director

EN & Cloud Marketing