Wasted space is wasted money, but at the same time you don’t want productivity or staff morale to drop as a result of a poor workplace environment. It can be hard to imagine how to do this, but there are some simple changes and furniture hacks you can utilise to maximise space in every sense.
The first thing you need to change is your mindset, specifically when it comes to what constitutes ‘wasted space’. Desks on desks on desks is not ideal and, despite the fact that they won’t be used all the time, zoned areas for break outs, collaborative group work, private calls and meetings are essential. It’s a reality of creating a productive workplace that has to be accepted.
Likewise, having rows and rows of hot desks is a great way to get more bums on seats per square footage, but it’s not really optimised if you don’t consider those job roles in your business that actually require a quiet environment to work, or a permanent desk. Finance teams, for example, usually need some peace to be able to get on with their number crunching, and designers and technicians may need specialised equipment to do their jobs, so it doesn’t make sense for them to have to move workstations day-to-day.
Space planning is one of those things people think they can do themselves, despite not necessarily having the knowledge or skills to do so. But as you may now realise, it’s more complicated than you might have first thought. This leads us on to tip number two…
Get a professional to measure the space and plan it for you.
Accurate floor plans are such a useful tool that it’s amazing to me how many businesses, especially SME’s, opt to not bother with them. Most obviously, a floor plan allows you to repeatedly reconfigure the space again and again until you find something that works for your business, without any of the back breaking labour involved in physically moving the furniture around with each new prospective idea. It’s well worth the investment and you can get it done quite easily through us at Banner, or any office interiors agency.
Use softer furnishings to create an inviting space that’s at least somewhat as cosy and comfortable to work in as your employee’s home set ups. You may even want to consider creating dedicated wellbeing areas that serve no other purpose than to give staff a place to relax, swap ideas and generate a sense of community. Again, this is not wasted space because it’s creating a healthier, and therefore more productive, working environment.
Finally, you need to consider the size of your existing furniture. Each individual workstation doesn’t need to be that big. If your desks are any other shape than rectangle, (e.g. if they’re curved) you can save space by swapping them our for a smaller option. Likewise, pedestal drawers take up a lot of room and they aren’t always necessary in flexible working areas; in fact, they encourage employees to ‘own’ a workstation, so they really don’t work if hot desking is what you’re going for.
There is also specialist furniture that allow you to create totally mobile office environments so that the space can be modified to suit the requirements of a certain project or purpose. Office furniture such as the Senator Play range, for example, is on wheels, allowing for workplaces to be adapted to best suit those working within the space.
This process might seem like a challenge, but it will undoubtedly be worth it. There has never been a better time to ensure that your employees feel comfortable, safe and supported, while also making your workplace as productive as possible.
Inspired solutions that enhance the performance of modern workplaces
At Banner, we offer inspiring solutions that promote productivity, encourage creativity and improve overall well-being; because when your space works, everything works.
From sourcing that perfect single product, to modular solutions for flexi-working, to full office design and refurbishment, we have the skills, knowledge and expertise to delivery the best solution for your organisation.