6 Office Space Planning Tips for Optimized Workspace Layout
The purpose of workspaces is not only to house employees and equipment. Ideally, a well-designed office should encourage productivity and creative thinking, provide suitable conditions for collaboration, and leave enough room for relaxation and recharging. However, considering how commercial square footage is not cheap, fitting everything into a limited amount of space is often more complex than it seems. So, whether you are searching for a new workspace or looking to redesign your current one, you probably need a few office space planning tips for optimized workspace layout. If that’s the case – you are in luck! This article will let you in on six helpful suggestions that should make this task a bit less headache-inducing.
1. Prioritize comfort
People who spend a lot of their time working in an office understand the importance of comfort. However, more often than not, furniture found in workspaces does not provide much of it. And while you might be tempted to equip your office as affordably as possible, that probably isn’t the best idea. Uncomfortable chairs and desks can significantly decrease productivity and even cause some health issues, which will not only affect your employees but also your business.
To ensure your office furniture is supportive of your team’s posture and overall health, it might be a good idea to opt for ergonomic desk chairs. Look for ones with armrests, comfortable padding, lumbar support, and various adjustment possibilities so that people of all heights, weights, and shapes can fine-tune them according to their liking.
Additionally, make sure to remove any old and unwanted furniture from the office to avoid cluttering up the space. This will help you keep things clean and thus make the workspace more comfortable and professional-looking.
2. Improve lighting
Besides back pain, inadequate lighting in the office is what most employees complain about. And considering how working in a dark environment can negatively affect mood, efficiency, and overall wellbeing, you shouldn’t think twice about improving this aspect of your workspace. However, make sure not to overdo it with artificial lighting as this can be counterproductive.
Plenty of natural light would be ideal, but considering how adding more windows is likely not an option, your best bet would be to add adjustable desk lamps and lighting fixtures. Remember that different sections of the space receive different amounts of light during the day. Therefore, walking around the office and figuring out which parts need improvement is imperative. If, however, you are looking for a new space, make sure to tell your real estate agent what your priorities are.
3. Think about coworking and collaboration
When thinking about office space planning for an optimized work layout, you shouldn’t forget about coworking and collaboration. In most industries, collaboration between employees is a necessity. If your office does not provide suitable conditions for it, overall productivity will likely suffer and decrease. On the other hand, if your employees are able to work together and share ideas without interruptions, their efficiency and creativity will surely reach a new level.
To encourage teamwork, make sure to include a big desk around which everyone can gather. If your space is on the smaller side, consider adding a few comfortable chairs in a circle around a table. Additionally, try to design your office in a way that allows easy interaction between employees while also leaving some room for privacy. Since people have different requirements when it comes to optimizing their productivity, accommodating everyone’s needs is imperative.
4. Include a space for relaxation
If you want your employees to stay productive, including a space with the sole purpose of relaxation is essential. Taking a break during long work hours encourages creative thinking, improves mood and energy levels. Therefore, try to incorporate a room without any work-related equipment where employees can unwind and take their minds off the projects they are working on. Make sure to add a comfy couch and chairs along with a small library, a few board games, or a foosball table. This is where you can let your creativity shine. It might also be a good idea to ask your employees what they would like to have in the little lounge area, as they are the ones who will be using it.
5. Plan with your employees in mind
Planning an optimal workspace layout is important. However, doing so with your employees in mind is essential. An ideal seating plan and the best equipment in the world will not have the same effect on productivity if the people in your office do not feel comfortable in it.
For instance, when decorating your workspace, try not to overdo it with your own taste. Instead, ask the employees to participate by adding their touches to their desks, cubicles, and shared spaces. Make sure to add plants suitable for the amount of light the office gets as they will improve air quality and make the space cozier and more inviting.
Pay attention to the temperature, as well. Offices that are too cold or too hot don’t do much for productivity and employee satisfaction which are crucial aspects of every successful business.
6. Leave room for growth
If you apply these office space planning tips with your employees’ comfort and wellbeing in mind, your business will surely prosper and grow. When that happens, you will need room to expand and accommodate new team members. If your current workspace is not big enough for that, you might need to think about moving to a more suitable location. Luckily, Washington offers many business-friendly spaces and commercial real estate firms that can assist you in your search. And if you are dreading the inevitable office move, know that hiring a crew in the area to help out will significantly alleviate the task. With reliable professionals by your side, you will undoubtedly minimize downtime, get everything your company needs, and more.