In older times, workplace strategy meant cramming what you could in to the square footage you had available, to save on costs. Today’s definition of workplace strategy has dramatically changed since then. As newer generations enter the work force, alterations of all kinds are being made to traditional work spaces. These major adaptations are aimed to meet the standards set forth not only by these next-to-bat employees, but by some of the biggest power house real estate firms in the world.
A major difference between old and new workplace strategy comes from not highlighting how much a space will cost, but instead shifting focus on what’s most important – the employee experience. With the emergence of more remote workers, private and collaborative spaces being designed in more innovative ways, and inclusion of how employees at a specific company work at a specific location – proper design of a workplace can often times end up costing less than originally expected. Knowing how occupiers of a space operate on a daily basis is the key to a properly designed workplace strategy.
Design It Right
Historically, we’ve seen a move away from standard cubicle-based offices for a trend of ‘open concept’ offices…but workplace strategy can’t just be an acceptance of an office-wide trend that may work for some companies. Business goals should be clear and support the creation of a new type of office environment. Employers should put emphasis on understanding what activities and functions a space needs to support, and how their employees will work best within these spaces. A successful workplace strategy will be employee-centric. If an employee’s experience aligns with what they value in the work place, and friction is simultaneously reduced, chances are that productivity and satisfaction will rise. Addressing known wants and needs, and anticipating what’s to come must also be factored in. Access to healthy food and drinks, small private areas, open collaborative spaces, closed meeting rooms, small and large conference rooms, natural and circadian lighting, access or views of nature/greenery, placement of shared office resources, integrated technology, comfortable & functional furniture and more, will be aspects taken in to account during the design of a workplace strategy that will see success on the other side.
The idea here is to get as much input as possible from the people affected most by the implementation of this strategy – the employees. Involve every department that interfaces with the physical environment, and be sure to include HR and IT. Creating a workplace strategy using an employee-integrated approach will yield much better results for the business and the people within.
Curating Your Best Workplace Strategy
Depending on where you’re at in the process of designing your workplace strategy, there are a number of resources around to help you achieve success in aligning business goals with employee satisfaction. Many commercial real estate companies have departments within their organizations that are dedicated to helping clients design and execute on all things related to their physical office space. Architecture firms may have interiors departments that can work with you to design your newly chosen space. And furniture dealers, like Interior Solutions, are a great resource to help you plan your space, account for future growth, and help you select and achieve your goals for budget, functionality, and aesthetic for all the physical things that will outfit your space. Employees will interact with their physical environment, and their physical environment will interact with them in a symbiotic fashion if done right.
Curious about learning what you can do to create a successful workplace strategy? Call our offices to discuss your ideas.
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