How Your New Office Can Help You Start Strong This 2019
Posted on January 30, 2019 by Franco Alvarez
The responsibility of running a company can be overwhelming. Something as simple as moving into a new workspace and designing it with your business goals in mind can help motivate your organization for peak performance.
Your office layout and design can positively or negatively affect your company’s productivity. If it’s your company culture to “work hard, play hard,” then start your quest to boost morale by creatively maximizing your new office.
Below is an infographic that illustrates the different ways on how you can transform your new office space for a more efficient working environment and happier employees.
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Types of Office Layouts
Open floor plan – Open offices are designed to eliminate distance and build up collaboration among colleagues and departments. Get rid of physical barriers, like wall dividers, so employees have more room to interact with one another. This is ideal for businesses in the creative and tech industries.
- helps build camaraderie
- less electricity use
- can accommodate more employees
- gives more opportunity for interaction
- could hinder concentration
- lack of privacy
Traditional – A closed office layout provides heavy partitions which offer employees enough privacy so they can work without distractions. Managers in traditional office spaces have their designated private sections in the office while other employees have individual cubicles. Financial organizations and law firms usually adapt this classic office layout.
- motivates employees to climb up the hierarchy
- improves focus
- reiterates organizational structure
- could impose a barrier in communication
- costs more to build and maintain
- makes it more challenging to supervise employees
Creative – Creative offices follow a particular square feet allocation per person. It’s more space-efficient and promotes better interaction, transparency, and collaboration among managers, team leaders, and employees. Startups, creative agencies, tech companies, and large enterprises are exploring this type of layout.
- promotes collaboration within and across departments
- can accommodate more employees
- could hinder productivity and focus
- limits privacy
Contiguous – This pertains to multiple adjacent or neighboring suites on the same floor area of a building that is under one tenant. This is common among government offices.
- separates departments to accommodate their specific needs
- effective supervision
- limits interactions within and across different teams
- can be costly
Landscape – Landscape layouts observe an organic flow of desks based on organizational paths, but hierarchical structures are set aside for equality. It also features various space elements, such as ambient lighting, decors, and plants as visual barriers, for aesthetic and productivity purposes. This originated in Germany and is commonly practiced by small teams.
- promotes equal treatment among employees
- emphasizes transparency and informal interactions
- could be disruptive and may negatively affect employee productivity and concentration
- lack of privacy
Which office layout is best for your business?
Your office layout and design directly affect your organization’s productivity, performance, satisfaction, collaboration, and culture. In terms of choosing which layout is right for your business, you have to determine what your company needs.
If you want to build a more collaborative and fun work environment and culture, you can opt for an open floor plan. If your business requires your employees to have more privacy for better productivity and quality performance, then look into the traditional design.
You can also tailor your office layout (e.g., create a hybrid of open space and traditional layout) based on your business’ and employees’ needs.
The most important thing is to maintain a clutter-free workspace, promote productivity, and boost team morale. Choose an office layout that supports the flow of your business processes and how your employees want to work. At the end of the day, the purpose of this is to keep them productive, which then enables the company to run smoothly and efficiently.
5 Things Employees Want in Their Office
- Comfortable chair – Since your employees will spend most of their time sitting, giving them a chair keeps them comfortable should be a top priority. If possible, provide them with an ergonomic chair that can improve their posture, reduce back pain, and help prevent other health risks.
- Refreshments – Ask your employees and it’s guaranteed that they all want this—refreshment options. Place a coffee bar in your pantry and add tea options for those who don’t take caffeinated drinks. Of course, make sure that clean, potable water is always available!
- Temperature control – Some employees may be comfortable with 75 degrees (Fahrenheit), but others may prefer to keep it between 60 to 65 degrees. This may be hard to regulate, but one way to make it work is to give your employees the freedom to move to places with the most comfortable temperature. You can also have a designated person switch up the temperature from time to time.
- Cleanliness – Your employees may not find the time to wipe their desks clean, so do consider hiring a cleaning service to clear the mess inside and out—from their desks, to the pantry, and to the restroom. If you can hire a cleaning person to do it on the daily, much better.
- Practical desk – Make sure that you give your employees various desk options. Some may still prefer traditional desks, but others may choose to work on sit-stand desks to adjust to their needs and comfort.
What’s Should Be Inside Your Office Space?
- Productivity zones – This refers to isolated areas meant for boosting individual concentration to focus on specific tasks such as creating reports or presentations. You can designate specific places intended for this, such as several single tables that are separated from the rest of the employees.
- Collaborative zones – These are areas meant to accommodate three or more people for brainstorming and project collaboration. You can set up a long table for this purpose.
- Movable furniture – Adaptable and multifunctional furniture allows employees to switch up a room or rearrange chairs, tables, and benches, at any given time. This gives employees control over their work environment.
- Proper ventilation and lighting – Indoor pollution can cause health-related risks due to tightly sealed buildings which block air from coming in and out of the building. Regular maintenance of air conditioning and ventilation system can improve air quality. Meanwhile, harsh lighting can be detrimental to one’s productivity as it can cause eye strain and fatigue, especially when the eyes are forced to work harder to see properly.
- Access to power and internet connection – If you see your employees switching places a couple times a day to work more productively, the best you can do is to provide them better access to power sources and internet connection.
Wrapping it up
Putting your employees’ well-being first significantly reflects on their productivity. By designing an office space that is employee-centric, where they feel comfortable to work however they want and at whichever part of the office, can have a positive impact on their overall morale and performance.
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Franco has always had a passion for entrepreneurship. Even at a very young age, he would constantly find an opportunity to make a little cash on the side. May it be selling women’s bracelets made out of safety pins and cheap stones or writing research papers for his rich classmates who didn’t want to study, he took advantage of each chance he got. Now, as a father of three and a full-time entrepreneur, he believes that there is always an opportunity to be of service to your fellow businessman. All you need to have is the right intention, and the proper skill set to be of help to others. In his downtime, he and his wife find new things to distract their kids with.