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Life in the Channel: Evoko’s Sofie Berglund

The Partner Relations Manager and Project Leader at Evoko discusses how meeting-room technology is evolving.

Tell us a bit about what Evoko does and your role within the company.

Evoko is a Swedish company driven by innovation, design and a mission to ‘make every meeting magnificent’. We develop products like room-booking devices, conference speakers and with our latest product we have taken a new approach to public space communication.

At Evoko our main focus is coming up with great ideas and then teaming up with partners within the area to make sure we always present the best products. As Evoko is growing we are now developing more and more in-house.

My role within the company is divided between two different departments. Half the time I’m a project leader in the Evoko engineering team managing new development projects. During the other half, I am a partner relations manager where I work with overall strategy and processes.

What new projects have you been working on?

Throughout 2018 I’ve mainly worked with our newest member in the Evoko family, Evoko Pusco. It’s a brand-new product where we are taking a new direction within the area of public space communication. We’ve tried to use modern technology to make communication as easy as possible. Pusco, just like the rest of the Evoko products is a complete solution, meaning we have created both hardware with a stunning design and software that is easy to use. It’s a project that we’ve worked on for over a year and it has been a really fun challenge.

When developing a complete solution, you are covering many different areas, which I as a project manager need to understand to be able to keep the whole project together. I’ve learnt so much, everything from UX design to EMC measurements!

What exciting advancements have you seen recently in the smart meeting solution space?

I absolutely love how everything is becoming more digital and wireless. I’ve always been opposed to writing notes on a computer whilst having a meeting, which is very irritating because I often want to draw and make sketches myself. I think it feels impersonal having a computer between myself and the other people in the meeting. I used to always bring a notebook and pencil, (how very modern of me), but this summer I replaced my notebook with a tablet and stylus which I think is a significant improvement. Now, I go to meetings and I write and draw as if I had a notebook, but the huge difference is that every note is now organised in a library, synchronised with my computer/phone and I can even translate my sloppy handwriting to a chosen font, making it possible to search for different words and topics.

Another exciting development is that I recently had a meeting with a robot. One of the meeting attendees couldn’t be there in person so instead we had a robot replacing him. The robot’s face was a tablet showing a video link with him, so it actually felt like he was in the room.

If you could change/improve one thing about the tech industry, what would it be?

What every woman in this industry wants – a more gender equal work space. Every industry needs a mixture of different personalities and different backgrounds and it feels like the tech industry has a long way to go in this area. It has absolutely improved but we need to speed it up as we are still so far behind.

In terms of the tech itself, I would like to see a change in attitude to quality instead of quantity. There are so many products that are developed, but it seems like the questions “Do we really need this?”, “Can we use something we already have?” and “Can we reuse materials?” are rarely asked. The environmental aspects are often forgotten in this industry too and the awareness of this factor should be a demand in every new development project.

What has Evoko got planned 2019?

We are very excited to hear the reaction of end-users to the Evoko Pusco. The feedback we’ve received when presenting Pusco at different events and trade shows has been amazing, so it will be so interesting to hear what the actual users will say.

As we are innovators at Evoko, we always have a lot of new ongoing development projects. Right now they are top secret, but keep an ear out in the coming months! 

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