Even though every space is unique, the flow and necessary areas are usually very similar. It is important to approach design with a keen eye focused on building the spaces people need to be productive. That means building in areas where individuals can enjoy privacy, collaboration and social interaction.
Since striking the right balance is so important, there are a few points you and your business should take into consideration before you dive into your next office design.
Let’s consider the following questions before designing your space:
1. How Do You Find the Right Balance for Focus and Collaboration?
We aren’t about to start promoting the concept of feng shui, but design is about flow, placement and balance. When you look at an empty space, think of it as a circuit. You want to build a natural flow from when someone enters the space guiding them to circle back to the exit. Consider where the individual and group focus areas should be located.
Locating focus areas away from activity centers like entrances or lounges will naturally create quiet private zones. Once you determine where the focus areas should be located, you can design the rest of the office. You can intentionally move noise away from those key spaces.
2. What Does Your Brand Look and Feel Like?
Once you have a plan on how your space should flow, you need to think about your brand.
When employees, customers, prospects, and interviewees visit your workspace, who you are should be clearly communicated when they walk in the door. In a space, everything should speak to who owns it, the patterns, colors, logos, fabrics, natural lighting, and layout all play into a the visual perception of the space.
|Case Study: YARD – Implementing Flexible Office Design|
If your space allows for hard work and builds on your identity, you’ve built something that should make you proud.
3. What Is Your Budget?
Hiring a construction crew to build permanent structures (like walls) in your office can be costly, time-consuming, and may require permits.
Modular walls let you create the spaces you want in an economical way, bypassing the pains and costs associated with permanent fixtures. They also give your business added flexibility, letting you redefine how your space works over time. This flexibility sold Dallas-based DHD Films on LOFTwall.
4. What Are Your Growth Goals?
If you’re planning to grow quickly, you’ll need more spaces to accommodate for that growth. Modular office partitions can be adjusted and added on the fly, allowing you to create and reconfigure spaces to keep up the pace. If you grow to the point of moving offices entirely, your office partitions — and thus the spaces you make with them — can come with you, making for a much easier transition than creating a space from scratch.
Give Employees a Chance for Input
While you understand the ins and outs of your industry and business, office design is a people-centric endeavor. Listening to employees is critical to understanding how they like to work and what spaces will make them happiest. Giving people the opportunity to help design where they work will positively contribute to how they work, and positively benefit your brand and company financially as well.