Posted on January 12, 2017
We all know getting your workplace design right is critical to getting the most out of your staff and business. Here are our 3 steps to ensuring the design of your workplace is working as hard for your business as you are.
Step 1: Understand your space
Workplaces and offices come in all shapes and sizes and are almost never ‘run of the mill’. This said, it doesn’t mean it can’t meet the needs of your business and staff.
We see this situation all the time and always start by asking some pertinent questions of the business, and its staff, to really understand the needs of the space itself:
- What is the most important thing the space needs to accommodate?
- Does it need to house a certain amount of staff or equipment?
- What will be the main activity your staff will be doing in this space?
- Does the space need to be multi-functional? If so, what are these functions?
- How important is privacy or sound reduction for this space?
- Does this room need to motivate and inspire staff?
Through the consideration of these questions, you will begin to better understand the needs of the space giving your workspace design team a much clearer idea of how they can create exactly what is needed.
For example, if this is the main workspace for your business where your staff spend the majority of their time, the use of graphics and manifestations on walls and glass partitions can play a key role in productivity and motivation.
Another reason to consider the holistic needs of your workspace design is to ensure the right furniture is included. If the space needs to accommodate group working and informal meeting spaces alongside individual working, agile furniture designed specifically for this dual-purpose can be factored in.
Step 2: Choose the right furniture in your workspace design
This brings us nicely on to choosing the right furniture. You might think it’s all just desks and office chairs and how different are they all, really? Well, the truth of the matter is that there is a whole industry based solely on contemporary office furniture!
There are a number of different elements to consider;
And this is just for the basic desks and chairs. If you are looking to include storage units such as cabinets and cupboards, the options multiply further.
It is important to talk to your workspace design team about exactly what you want to achieve with your new workspace design. They will then be able to show you the different furniture options and signpost you to the best choices for your business.
It is especially important to know what the options are if you are looking to include partitioning or Agile working in your workplace design – the options here vary dramatically in terms of style, cost and effectiveness.
If you don’t get the furniture options right, your staff will be uncomfortable and this can significantly reduce productivity. Sick days have been found to increase significantly where incorrect furniture is being used. It doesn’t have to mean increasing your budget to buy the most expensive, it could be as simple as including footrests for shorter members of staff.
It also boosts staff morale if they believe the company has invested in them via their furniture. By choosing furniture that is fit for purpose, staff feel valued by their company and are far more likely to be content at work.
Step 3: Make the most of your lighting options
Lighting can be the most significant factor in productivity in staff and is always the most overlooked aspect of any workspace design.
In our experience, the lighting in a workplace design is an integral element. We always try to make the most of any natural light available and where we need to include additional lighting, we look at all of the options available to make sure it is as functional yet unimposing as possible.
There are a plethora of different lighting options which are energy-saving and can create ambiance as well as a more productive working environment. Lighting can affect headaches, eye-strain and the overall health of your staff so it is worth asking the question of your workspace design company and investigating the lighting options before you sign off the final design.