Work is increasingly moving into the digital world, and at the same time there is a growing need for a more humane work experience.
Companies realize that the allocated space remains unused during 30 to 50 percent of the workday, as new technologies and innovative office designs give workers the freedom to work wherever it suits them best based on their unique needs. Today’s professionals are results-oriented, dynamic and not tied to a single desktop.
The success of telecommuting encourages us to rethink the ways and places in which work is done.
Managers and employees share the view that the post-pandemic future of the office brings much more flexibility, but few are willing to give up office space altogether.
That’s why an increasing number of companies are turning to hybrid workspaces where large numbers of office workers rotate in spaces designed to share jobs. This model provides the flexibility that many employees (and some employers) desire after months of working from home. This is a complicated way to organize the work week, which will surely transform the internal life of companies, employee activity, business processes and the way of using office space.
The decision how to approach the organization of business and office space is one of the most complex issues facing today’s managers.
Employees today expect more from their workplaces than ever before. Standardized models are no longer relevant because workers are looking for environments that are more mobile, flexible, and personalized according to individual preferences. Offering carefully designed offices and other workspaces is a great way to attract and retain top talent while fostering good health, involvement and employee productivity. Companies that ignore these trends are put at risk, and those that adapt to new and logical circumstances are more likely winners in the “talent race,” and can expect more significant growth.
The most innovative companies provide a wide range of employee-friendly spaces, such as well-designed “quiet oases” with a focus on technology, shared workspaces, short break spaces and socialization spaces.
The office remains, but its role changes.
Less than a fifth of managers want to return to the classic office spaces we knew before the pandemic. The rest of them are thinking about how to extend the possibility of working remotely. Most managers expect changes in their real estate strategy over the next 12 months.
The plans include consolidating office space in the best locations and / or opening more satellite locations.
Spatial needs will now be defined by the number of workers who will be in the office each day, the amount of space needed for workers to be productive, while taking care of health safety, and companies’ decisions to reduce their existing “real estate footprint” by moving to models of working remotely or to use office space flexibly to meet fluctuating space needs.
These findings suggest that many companies are taking the opportunity to become creative with the workspace in the next few years.
The goal of going to the office is to create an experience that improves the company’s relationships and culture.
Activities to this end will include improvements in office equipment and decor and an increase in the area of cooperation and socializing areas – but also the return of some assigned “private” offices and “quiet oases” – in a deliberate move away from cubicles and large offices for many employees (so-called “open space” offices). Companies recognize that some employees, in addition to places for socialization, need or prefer a separate place for focused work.
The shape of the new workspace ecosystem
Organizational culture is a subtle but powerful current that directs worker behavior and consists of objects, assumptions, and values. It is a set of leadership styles, procedures, goals, and many other characteristics that make an organization unique.
One of the strongest symbols of an organization is the spaces it has built – the spaces through which it communicates its values.
The changes we have seen in the last eight months suggest that the office – as we know it – will change. The trend is to work in an ecosystem consisting of office, home and third places. But the office will remain a central place for the work and development of corporate culture.
The office is evolving into a place to hang out with colleagues and clients, with more collaboration than ever. It is the epicenter of the organization’s culture in which it is embedded and from which it develops. With the continuous adjustment of the office of the future, it becomes a center of group work and interaction as well as a place well equipped to prepare and hold meetings and analyze their results.
So far, mostly by force of circumstances, we are already well acquainted with teleworking and our workplace at home. The home office will continue to evolve to support activities such as concentrated work, reading, scheduled calls, and virtual meetings. The home also plays a role in the balance of private and business life when employers support flexible working hours of employees.
The spaces between the office and home – third places – will become much more important as people look for additional places to work focused work without distractions (like colleagues, partners, children or pets). Third places give a new dimension to our work and allow for temporary concentrated work or shorter activities in a different environment from the office or home.
How workspaces will adapt to various types of work cultures
The physical workplace should reflect organizational goals and values. People will certainly come together to inform each other, socially connect, think strategically, and work together to achieve goals, but parts of the organization will have different preferred ways of working together. Understanding and designing with these preferences in mind will prepare the ground for your people to do the best they can.
The workplace culture is invisible, but it leaves a mark on every aspect of the business. Culture is shaped by the values of the organization, and it affects where, how and when we work. As we adapt to the new workspace ecosystem, it is crucial to consider how culture affects spatial planning.
The way organizations adapt to a new ecosystem depends on the primary value underlying their work culture. Research from various business environments has highlighted four types of work culture of an organization focused on: Collaboration, Creation, Control and Competition. Each of them approaches the questions of how, where and when it is done in a different way.
An organic workspace is our perspective and process for understanding the work environment and how employees use it.
In this new work ecosystem, workplace arrangements need to respond to challenges by creating environments that enable connectivity and interaction, and adapt to required occupancy levels. The answer to these challenges is the “Organic Workspace”.
An organic workspace is our perspective and process for understanding the work environment and how employees use it. We begin by analyzing the entire ecosystem – where interaction and collaboration takes place – all the way to an individual work unit – whether in the office, home or in third place. We then help our clients develop solutions that ensure employees achieve their maximum, that support organizational culture and use their existing resources, while enabling easy reconfiguration and reduced costs.
In a world changed by COVID 19 – which is still changing – we are sure of one thing: workspaces must be flexible.
They need to enable change as quickly as people and organizations need it. Individuals and teams will choose the right workspace based on the task at hand and will look for places where they feel most productive.
Premises designed before a pandemic may not be the best solutions for the future. As we move into a new ecosystem, we carry with us a better understanding of what worked before, but also during extraordinary circumstances, what didn’t. Using this new perspective will allow us to have a different view of office, home and third place design to maximize their potential for future work.
The office is the epicenter of what makes people work, what helps people achieve the best results. Starting with the office, we will explore what the right balance is for your ecosystem.
We can offer solutions that will ensure continuous operation in several environments, supporting productivity and efficient use of space.
DEFINING THE SCOPE AND OBJECTIVES OF THE PROJECT, ANALYSIS OF WORK ORGANIZATION, BUSINESS PROCESSES AND CLIENT NEEDS
In the preparatory phase of the project, our task is to listen and understand the client, ie to look at the current situation, plans and business strategy of the client, and analyze his work organization, business processes and future needs.
This analysis is necessary for the quality implementation of the following phases – finding adequate space, its planning and design, and equipment proposals.
SELECTING THE APPROPRIATE OFFICE SPACE
Based on the needs analysis from the previous phase, we provide our client with consulting services in selecting the appropriate business space.
The type and scope of consulting services when choosing a space depends on the specifics of the project, and most often include a survey of the space, making a sketch of the organization of space to check whether the space meets the client’s needs, analysis of space utilization and the like.
Based on the analysis of the client’s needs and business processes, and the available space, we develop a detailed project for the organization of space in such a way that the accommodation of individual work units and teams enables an optimal level of interaction between them.
INTERIOR SPACE DESIGN
After accepting the concept of space organization, we approach the creative part of design – interior space design in such a way that all elements of interior design – floors, walls, furniture, greenery, paintings form a harmonious whole. Thorough consideration of the visual identity of business premises is necessary, both to define the image of the company that the client wants to show (modern, classic, design, etc.) and to create an environment in which employees will feel comfortable and be productive.
After defining all the parameters of the project, we present to the client a furnishing proposal – a cost estimate including all the prices of selected products and services. We offer furnishing in two or more variants, ie price categories so that the client can choose furniture that best meets his requirements, and offers the most optimal ratio of design, quality and price.
DELIVERY AND INSTALLATION OF EQUIPMENT, AFTER-SALES SERVICE
After defining all the details, we organize the delivery and installation of equipment to the full readiness and functionality of the space.
After installation, we provide after-sales service according to the needs of the client – regular checkups of equipment, project of a new organization and professional dismantling and installation in case of relocation to a new location.