Open floor plans and dynamic workspaces are rapidly becoming the norm, and forward-looking businesses are adapting the model to make more effective use of their office space. There are, however, a few things you should consider.
Managing office space is an ongoing challenge and creating a dynamic space is becoming increasingly important.
As businesses evolve, they require larger or smaller spaces, as well as periodic reconfiguration to manage new employees and new roles. The shift to hybrid workspaces—where employees divide their time between work in a central office and work at home or similar remote locations—has accelerated this trend.
As a result, open floor plans and dynamic workspaces are rapidly becoming the norm and forward-looking businesses are adapting the model to make more effective use of their office space. There are, however, a few things you should consider.
Consider Breakout Spaces
An informal staple of offices for a long time, they’re simply a room or an open space given over to any purpose that’s needed at the time. It might be referred to as a “meeting room” or a “spare room,” but it acts as a catchall for any unspecified requirement.
With the rapid changes in office space taking place, breakout spaces are rapidly becoming a necessity, and it’s not hard to see why. They provide flexibility and multifunctionality, allowing you to rapidly change it without investing a lot of time or effort.
That, in turn, can save a great deal on office space, allowing you to consolidate multiple workstations into a single room that can be adjusted based on the needs of the moment. It’s especially easy to implement for businesses looking at smaller office spaces in the switch to a hybrid environment. Along with fewer desk spaces and no need for a larger office, establishing a breakout area can cut your space needs even further, and drop the day-to-day costs of doing business in the bargain.
Breakout spaces provide health advantages too. Workers can benefit from readily available quiet rooms, to eat their lunch or simply take a break and collect their thoughts. Overall health improves, and they’re able to focus and do their jobs better.
Consider Designing for “Touchless” Technologies
Flexible office space, or dynamic space, means more people utilizing a given space overall, which in turn creates an attendant increase in health risk. Touchless technology eliminates shared devices and touchpoints such as door handles whenever possible and has become increasingly important to improve health and safety in a dynamic workplace. Consider the following:
- Automatic doors and soap dispensers in the bathrooms prevent the spread of health risks, and portable devices such as phones can be used to electronically sign in without needing to use a clipboard at a desk.
- Virtual meetings are a form of touchless technology, allowing each member to connect using their own device instead of sharing.
- Hot desking allows for rotating desk space, which increases the effectiveness of sanitization services and employees to start fresh with each new work shift.
When designing new office space, look for aspects where such technology should be prioritized.
Touchless technology can readily incorporate tools your employees already have—such as their phones. When properly implemented, they provide a more intuitive user experience and allow for collaborative work to take place safely in a shared space.
This enhances synergy and interpersonal connections, which are key to making hybrid workplaces function as they should. And of course, the attendant improvement in health status’ means fewer sick days and lowered costs for company healthcare plans.
Dynamic Space Planning Increases Your Focus on Well-Being
Hybrid workspaces are here to stay, with improvements in productivity, work-life balance, and overall efficiencies that no forward-thinking company should dismiss. Dynamic space planning can and should be a part of that, but particularly when it comes to employee well-being.
When setting up a hybrid workspace, consider how it can be used to improve your staff’s overall mental health. The Smarten Spaces software can be leveraged to facilitate that.
Employee needs should be at the forefront of every manager’s thoughts today and elements such as community feeds and surveys can assist here. Health and safety protocols such as digital social distancing, vaccination uploads, and contact tracing can ensure employee health and safety, thereby placing employees at ease in their office environment.
With today’s stricter health protocols, visitor management becomes critical and efficiently managing this will not only assist with managing clients and visitors but will again bring a sense of ease to the office space as employees know you have their health and welfare at heart. With the more flexible approach to office space, shared spaces and desk finders take the frustration out of the day for employees who may need a temporary desk space, or who may be looking for certain employees at any given time.
Automate Where You Can
Automation is one of technology’s greatest benefits, taking tedious or repetitious work out of human hands and capitalizing on the tremendous amounts of time and resources saved. A dynamic workspace can only benefit from it. Automated solutions, for example, can be used to analyze things like work schedules and desk assignments to find the optimum solution, sparing managers the need to determine the specifics themselves.
The same holds true for dynamic space management. Automating features such as occupancy space, contact tracing, and similar aspects can be managed quickly and accurately, letting you take advantage of the data gleaned without taking time away from other important employee tasks.
But, it goes beyond that. Analytics can help organize hot desk placement and identify the best hybrid schedule to meet every team member’s needs. That takes subjectivity out of the process and ensures that everyone’s concerns are addressed. It can also detect pressure points and recommend possible solutions, helping management run their entire operation more smoothly.
Plan Your New Dynamic Space With Smarten Spaces
With the benefits of a dynamic workspace more important than ever, the right software package can help your company make the most of it.
Smarten Spaces provides solutions for the dynamic workplace, with an array of features that automates, organizes, and simplifies all of the operational areas crucial for a dynamic workspace. If your company is in the midst of a transition to a hybrid office format, or if you have an existing system that you think could benefit from improved performance and efficiency, contact our team today, and let us show you how Smarten Spaces’ AI-driven solutions can help!