My office does not support the collaborative environment we need.
Collaboration is a fundamental piece of innovation and culture in a company. As more companies allow telecommuting or flexible work hours, collaboration can suffer if the proper tools are not present in your office space. Having designated spots that encourage collaboration whenever in the office helps maximize your workforce’s communication and idea-sharing. The resulting environment will improve employee retention and innovation– thus providing operational efficiency throughout your organization. Collaborative working can also be done digitally these days. This is often one of the easiest ways to collaborate with other workers as the project can be accessed by multiple people online, especially if the business has sharepoint migration to office 365. This allows content to be accessed by more people on Office 365, which is one of the most widely used business software out there. This helps with collaboration.
- Flexible floor plans: Collaboration happens differently for every organization. For some, ping pong tables and video game areas are the best way to get your employees working in concert. For others, abundant meeting rooms provide the privacy and flexibility for teams to actively work together on ideas and projects. For many companies multiple methods will be required to make everyone in your office actively collaborate. In this case, flexible floorplans may be the best design style to implement in your renovations. Flexible floorplans offer employees several options for where they want to work – ex: cubicles, private offices/conference rooms, open seating. However, not every company can afford to have a large portion of their space be shared collaboration space. That’s where flexible design can provide efficient and cost-effective options. By utilizing demountable walls, modular furniture, and movable technology, a space can be transformed depending on the current user. It’s a very similar set-up to a mobile office trailer that contractors and architects may use as their office space for the duration of their project. It can be adjusted to meet the needs of the business and its employees. The same space can provide the option of being as open or private as necessary, fit one employee or fifty, and can support video conferencing needs.
- Identified collaboration area: In some cases, an entirely new layout is not required for a company to improve teamwork. In companies where collaboration space is not required throughout the day, a flexible work environment may not be beneficial. Instead designated cubicles or private offices that can be built from shipping containers (see here https://bmarkostructures.com/shipping-container-offices/) may be the most efficient way for employees to perform the lions share of their work. In this case, in order to foster a health company culture and employee communication, companies may establish a specific collaboration area in hopes encouraging employees to gather, interact, and share ideas. In many offices the kitchen serves this function. For others, it could be an outdoor space, game room, or comfortable seating area. The use and design of the space will vary depending on your company culture and employees, but two general rules will always apply; the space should be located in a convenient and highly accessible area of your office, and the furniture and design should be welcoming enough to encourage small group break outs. Utilizing an architect or furniture design team, particularly one with a focus on workplace strategy, will provide expert insight in facilitating your collaboration space. Speak with your real estate broker for suggestions on the design team that best suits your needs.
For questions or more technical details to consider when looking to manage real estate costs, please reach out to our Director of Corporate Services, Elizabeth Holmes – 508-655-5029.