10 Tips on Better Office Space Planning!
Updated: Jan 21
Office space planning is about making sure that staff, furniture, equipment and resources are aligned into a workplace. Taking time to properly plan how your available office space should be used for maximum benefit gives your business the opportunity to design it around what your people need to achieve at work and hence increasing productivity. A pretty essential consideration! Workspaces should provide opportunities for employees to better connect with one another and with your company’s ethos.
1. Effectiveness Based on Space Usage, Not Area
Office layouts are designed in a way that higher-ranking people receive the most space. Floor plans ensure that executives and top management get plenty of room for their private offices, followed by an impressive board and meeting rooms. Whatever is left goes to identically sized, corner-to-corner cubicles for remaining employees. But, the most productive offices don’t plan around the carpet area, they plan around actual spatial usage. Effective office spatial management means tracking and measuring people’s real workplace behaviours, then setting an adequate layout, rather than designating desks and plugging people into them.
2. No more Conventional Cubicles
Activity-based office layouts in commercial spaces. Rather than assigning one specific cubicle for an employee, activity-based layouts help employees to choose their best work setting depending on the day’s tasks. It’s an intuitive and cost-effective way to use your square footage more effectively. For example, Important sales calls are best handled in private phone booths, and collaborative meetings are more productive in spacious areas.
3. Multi-Functional Furniture
Small offices really benefit from flexible office furniture. Furniture that serves dual purposes simultaneously, such as bookshelves working as storage and office partitions. Multi-functional furniture saves money, space and time.
4. Shared Spaces
Rather than isolating employees through high walls, it is better to assign employees to shared spaces. This helps increase communication as well as cooperative work efforts. Sound-absorbing screens and partitions can create a flexible shared working space that helps control noise levels and adds function to space.
5. Chair and Table
If you sit at a desk to work but find yourself adjusting, stretching and moving too often to actually stay focused, then you’re aware of the importance of having a correctly fitted table and chair. In today’s work environment where so many of us are sitting for most of our day, it is critical that your Chair and Table are comfortable and ergonomic.
6. Redefined Meeting Rooms
Just as employee workspaces should be evaluated based on usage, meeting room shapes and sizes should also be reevaluated. For most organizations, one or two meeting rooms are most preferred. These meeting rooms get booked at high rates for collaborative needs while the rest sit idle. Effective offices use employee surveys and real room booking data to determine which meeting rooms are prefered and why. They look to recreate those ideal conditions in other rooms or decide to repurpose less-used spaces altogether.
Offices always need to have a storage room or rooms depending on your business needs. These storages should provide plenty of room for shelving filing cabinets and other office supplies. Think about the items that you don’t typically account for like pens, paper, staplers, extra mailing supplies, etc. Design your storage spaces to accommodate additional storage needs in the future.
8. Create Space for Visitors
Visitors need a waiting area. Businesses prefer to design the reception area for this purpose. Make it welcoming and offer refreshments. Good office space planning incorporates a thoughtful approach to the furnishings that will go into a space, considering the number of guests you plan to have to wait at any given time.
9. Spaces designed for collaboration
Encourage your employees to walk to different parts of the office and enjoy space dedicated to collaboration. Collaborative spaces can be as simple as computers set up on tables where multiple people can gather, or as comfortable as a few plush chairs in a semi-circle around a table or an art display. These spaces make great, modern alternatives to just meeting in a meeting room.
10. Design a sustainable workspace
Sustainable workspace means a workspace that promotes ecological and environmental balance by reducing or avoiding entirely the depletion of natural resources. For a business that is already working hard to maximize savings, creating a sustainable office is an easy and effective way to reduce expenses even further while helping to save the environment.