Maximising office space requires a combination of astute planning, creativity and a keen understanding of how your business works and what your employees need. Here are a few steps you might consider to make the most of your existing space…
Optimise your space with the best desk arrangement for your business
Ensuring strategic placement of desks can have a huge impact on overall team productivity. The ideal arrangement needs to achieve a tricky balance — it should allow for privacy and independent working, but should also encourage collaboration. Here are the five most common layouts:
- Assembly Line: Desks are lined up in rows, and arranged side-by-side throughout the room. This is an old-fashioned layout that may feel too cramped and uncollaborative for many businesses. Desks can be turned to face one another to increase the sense of working together.
- Inner-facing: Desks are arranged in a circle of rectangle of inner-facing desks, so that all your team can collaborate effectively together. This can be a great solution if your business relies on creative collaboration where ideas are thrown back and forth around the room.
- Paired Islands: Desks are gathered in facing pairs, usually within an open office space. With this set-up, it can be a great idea to rotate employees on a regular basis so that they are able to build close relationships with the other members of their team.
- Blocked Seating: This is where desks are arranged in, for example, groups of four, like a larger version of the paired islands above. This can work really well when collaboration is based on small teams.
- Agile Workspaces: This is proving to be the most popular and sought-after office layout at the moment. With hot desks, soft seating and informal breakout areas, agile workspaces complement the spirit of collaboration perfectly and provide the versatility that modern day offices need. In these types of environments, nobody has a set desk, and having a clean desk policy is the order of the day. All work and personals are locked away in wall lockers and this can allow you to drop down the size of the desks to utilise the space better. With no under desk pedestals required, it’s a much cleaner look.
It’s important to remember, however, that you don’t have to limit yourself to one of the above layouts. Feel free to combine different layouts according to your needs. You can also use room dividers to vary your desk set-up within one single large space.
Refine and streamline your working practices
It can be very useful to question every aspect of how you currently work and ask if it’s really working for you. For example:
- What on-site storage do you need?
- How much technology is really necessary?
- Is your rubbish or recycling policy effective?
- Could hot-desking work better for you?
- How often do you use that meeting room and is that the best use of the space?
- Do your seating choices suit all your employees?
- Would a clean desk policy suit your team?
Optimise your storage
If you still need to store lots of hard copy paperwork on your premises, there are many creative and clever storage solutions available today. For example, you could opt for integrated storage solutions for alcoves or even for dividing rooms to maximise the use of space. Another neat solution is to choose half-height storage furniture, which helps to create department separation but also gives the overall impression of an open plan space.
Mobile storage is also proving to be very popular in the modern office environment. Mobile storage solutions can be wheeled from desk to desk and, with the aid of seating pads used on top, can even be used as an informal seating option as well as providing an effective storage solution. This type of storage is perfect for creating an agile workspace where hot desking is the norm.
Then there are much simpler solutions such as shelving units and wall lockers, which can help you declutter and can make a world of difference to how an office feels.
Ultimately, making sure that all your employees are working together comfortably and productively is your priority. If you feel that a fresh perspective is what you need to optimise your workspace, give us a call at Flow Office Co. We specialise in helping you get the most out of your office environment.