Offices originally had the reputation of being drab and lifeless, but throughout the years, businesses have realized that making their workspace a lot more appealing has its merits. This has resulted in many offices becoming colorful, some even contain “fun features” like a pool table or arcade games. Some changes were proven to be highly effective while some proved to be detrimental to productivity.
The difference results simply just mean there’s a lot more fine-tuning to do when it comes to designing the most appealing and efficient office. So here are some office design tips to help you make your workspace the best for you and your staff:
Before we go to the hows, let’s take a quick look at why a well-designed office is critical to any business.
It hammers branding
Office interior design can effectively express what a company is all about. If the office is full of linear, enclosed cubicles, it strikes as stifling and monotonous. In contrast, a more open space office with touches of lively colors can show youthfulness and openness to innovation.
It solidifies company culture and employee productivity
In the same vein, office layout and design also affect employees. If the company aims to encourage employees to work together as a team but the office design does not promote collaboration and socialization, it can be hard for the people to work efficiently and settle in the supposed culture.
It affects client experience
As a visitor to a company, imagine walking in an office to go to a conference room, only to have to wade through noisy printers, the smell of food from a pantry, or a very narrow and awkward corridor. If a business often deals with visiting clients, it’s best to go for a conscious design that deliberately puts the visitor experience at the front.
How You Can Start
The tips provided here aren’t just about the physical design of your office, but also the atmosphere and mentality of what it’s like to work there. Both are very important things, and here’s how you can encourage that.
Layout Your Space Efficiently
As mentioned already, think about office layout as a means to promote workplace productivity and efficiency. In this era of open communication and teamwork, it’s become more common to design open spaces in the office. This isn’t to say that tables and chairs should be laid out exaggeratedly open without any sense of personal space.
Instead, think of a layout where people won’t have to feel discouraged walking to a collaboration space from their desk just because the walk there requires a few turns and zigzags. Driving foot traffic is important, and what you want is people feeling able, energized, and organized.
Outsource What You Don’t Have
The logic is simple: if you don’t have anyone whose expertise you require, it’s best to simply just outsource that task. Forcing an employee to pour their precious mental energies on something they’re not particularly well-versed with will simply waste company resources. Take, for example, disposing of unneeded but confidential data: it’s a sensitive task that requires skill, and you simply can’t just give that to someone who doesn’t know what to do. Not only will they have a bad job at doing it but you’re reducing your team’s efficiency by putting manpower where it shouldn’t be in the first place.
The solution in this situation is to hire a secure shredding service; they’ll be able to accomplish the task you need without having to bother your hardworking staff. Understand that some tasks are better left for the professionals to accomplish- especially if you don’t have the right skills, tools, and equipment, or even space for it.
Use the Internet of Things (IoT) and Smart Technology
We live in a time where things can be made more efficient through the proper use of technology. And technology should most definitely be used. Consider integrating communication and collaboration tools for you and your staff to utilize. Or even video conferencing software to mitigate meetings and reduce the need to use the meeting room, or even reduce the need to physically be in the office altogether.
Use the Right Lighting
Even though we mentioned earlier to prioritize visitor experience when designing the office, mood lighting and fancy furniture should not be the first thing in your mind. Unless your office is a showroom, you have to remember that your top priority is your people, workflow, and productivity. Perhaps you could design an elegant or well-put-together reception area where guests can lounge.
However, on the work floor, general and task lighting should be carefully considered. Do you have a test kitchen? Make sure the lighting on your workstations is bright enough for chefs to see what they’re doing. Ultimately, you want to give your employees a conducive office for them to work effectively.