Coworking spaces have grown in popularity in recent years, as freelancers and telecommuters look for different ways to enhance their business productivity. However, the average Coworking space is more than simply an open space for office efficiency. These solutions are a response to the need for more bespoke working environments, tailored to the needs of unique workers.
Today’s companies are beginning to realise that there’s no one-size-fits-all environment for worker efficiency. Increasingly, we’re looking for new ways to keep workers happy and introduce new forms of working.
Introducing the “Agile Workspace”
The agile workspace is a blend of science and creativity. An environment that’s productive, space-efficient and effective, agile workspaces are a culmination of all the features that modern office workers need to achieve success. They’re neither the wide-open spaces dependent on creativity or the private cubicles intended for productivity. Instead, they’re an answer that walks the line in between both options.
So, what are the elements of a truly agile workplace?
1. Open Plan Areas
An agile working environment should include at least some open-plan areas, intended for broad communication and inspiration. These spaces are great for project teams and admin workers, but they’re not necessarily the best for productivity, as they can be highly distracting and noisy. In other words, while some open-plan space might be necessary for some companies, it’s not something you want to commit to at all times.
2. Breakout Spaces
Breakout areas are a kind of multi-purpose space designed to provide simple and accessibility meeting areas for teams and clients. These locations are ideal for brainstorming sessions, as they can offer a more creative setting than the standard closed-off meeting room. Of course, like open plan areas, they also suffer from the noisiness of a large, open space.
3. Quiet Zones
A critical part of any productive agile workplace, quiet zones allow workers to enjoy the privacy and silence that they might need to perform tasks that require intense concentration and confidentiality. In some cases, quiet zones can also work as small huddle spaces for meetings. These solutions offer an all-important oasis from the noise of the average workspace, but they can sometimes be difficult to manage if rules for use aren’t put in place.
4. Touchdown Points
Touchdown points are office areas that simply provide additional workspace for any worker who might do most of their tasks from home but visits the office occasionally. They’re intended for small, short-term tasks like checking emails or following the progress of a task. These areas provide flexibility for changes in occupancy levels, but they shouldn’t be relied upon as a space for completing long-term projects.
Storage and resources like printers, phones, stationary, and more are all vital to the average agile workplace. They might not be the most exciting part of the mix, but they’re crucial for making sure that workers can get the job done efficiently. Just make sure that you set up your resources to allow for the maximum level of productivity, and a minimal risk of distractions.
Rob is Founder & Publisher of UC Today, a leading news publication specialising in Unified Communications & Collaboration technologies.