Perhaps the biggest benefit of a shared desk is that you can fit a considerable amount of employees into a small space. In contrast, giving each employee an individual desk can take up more room – and cost more money.
The other benefit of a shared desk is that it lends itself to open plan offices. For a number of reasons, the open plan style is still among the most popular requests received by office designers. Creative companies, for example, may want to introduce an environment where employees can bounce ideas off one another, and sitting in close proximity can be great for this.
Shared desks can also establish an egalitarian ethos, where management sit alongside employees rather than being closed away in separate rooms.
While you may not have room or budget for a café in a small office, tea points are a practical alternative. They are compact, stylish, and are good for employee happiness.
Experienced office designers will plan the build so seating is included too. This creates the perfect environment for ad-hoc meetings, staff lunches or quiet working
Distracting noise can be ultimate thorn in the side of busy employees, and while larger offices are now adapting their interiors to include ‘quiet zones’, this is not so easy if your premises is small.
Acoustic chairs can provide the ideal solution. Not only are they able to fit in tight spaces, but are specifically designed for quiet working. The chair creates a cocoon around the individual and blocks out sound with acoustic panels fitted inside. You can even get pods with speakers to pump in some relaxing tunes.
Single chairs aren’t the only option either. You can also get larger booths which are great for collaborative working.
An alternative to bulky individual units, storage walls are a great way to maximise space in small offices. Due to the fact they are designed to fit around elements in the office, storage walls can save up to 30% of your office’s floor space.
In addition to this, storage walls are extremely practical and can bring a fluid, contemporary feel to your office design. Depending on your needs, they can be built to include everything from filing systems to chillers.
Less PCs inevitably means less room taken up, so from a space planning perspective wireless technology is very practical.
As technology is continuing to advance, we are seeing a surge in offices embracing a more wireless approach. The smart office, for example, allows staff to switch their style of working, whether it be iPad, laptop or mobile phone.
This is not to say that PCs should be removed completely, however. One of the other features of the smart office is integrated technology, where PCs can fold away into desks. This not only makes for a streamlined look, but hides away those pesky wires.
A fit out provides the perfect opportunity to bring more natural light into the office. According to one neuroscience study, workplaces with good exposure to daylight had a 3% – 40% gain in productivity and sales. The study also revealed that daylight is the most wanted natural element in workplace design.
Glass partitions can help to achieve a greater exposure to sunlight, and also give more depth to small office spaces. They can also maintain a departmental feel that many businesses prefer.
It’s a well-known fact that bright colours make rooms look bigger. However, many businesses like to include their brand colours in the interior design, which can be problematic if your house style is dark.
The solution is both simple and practical: combine your brand colour with a lighter shade. This will not only instill your brand identity, but prevent colour overkill.
If incorporating your brand colour into your office isn’t a priority, check out our top 10 colour trends of 2017. Research has shown that each colour has a unique psychological impact on staff (e.g. green is calming), so this is also an important factor when deciding.
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