Considering An Open Office Floorplan? Here Are 5 Things You Should Consider

Posted by Norma Anthony on Feb 29, 2016 11:30:00 AM

As workplaces increase their efforts to facilitate employee collaboration, there has been a significant shift from private, traditional offices to open office floorplans. Employers are eliminating physical barriers and opening up lines of communication across the office.


While open office floorplans can spur collaboration, maximize your use of space and create a trendier atmosphere, you need to think on several factors before changing your office layout. Before you tear down cubicle walls, check out these 4 things you should consider before implementing an open office floorplan.

Offer Creative Workspaces

There will be times when your employees require a quiet space to think and concentrate on a problem or work project. Or your staff members may need an area to bounce ideas off of each other. Everyone works differently, and it’s important to offer each employee a place where they can work comfortably.

An open office plan doesn’t mean packing as many desks into a work area as you possibly can. You should offer diverse workspaces for employees to reflect on their work and to devise a solution to a challenging problem.

You could build small, private rooms for phone calls or quiet work. Or maybe, include a breakfast nook with couches and comfy chairs so employees can brainstorm and discuss current projects. Make sure you clearly define the purpose of each room, whether it’s for eating lunch, small group conversations, large co-working sessions or focused work.

Movable Furniture

An open office plan can be ideal for extroverts, but introverts may find it incredibly distracting. This is where movable furniture comes in.

Certain desks and cabinets can be adjusted to allow employees more privacy when they wish to work individually and then changed again to encourage collaboration. This enables employees to reconfigure their office furniture for different work modes.

Seating Alternatives

Sitting at a desk for eight hours a day can grow tiresome and wreck your health. Some healthier alternatives to the traditional desk chair are yoga ball chairs, kneeling chairs or even treadmill desks. Another option is using adjustable standing desks, where employees can easily transition from sitting to standing, depending on their preference.

These non-traditional seating options can lead to a boost in productivity and a healthier lifestyle. According to a study conducted by Business Insider, working at standing desks resulted in up to 10% more productivity. Standing can create a sense of urgency where employees are more inclined to finish the task at hand.

Remove Assigned Seating

Flexible seating arrangements allow employees to find where they work best in the office. Some people may prefer working in a quiet corner, while others like to be in the center of the room where they can actively participate.

Some employees may want to sit next to a quieter employee for better concentration, while others may want a more sociable neighbor to discuss new strategies. Unassigned seating gives employees the ability to sit wherever they feel the most inspired, leading to an increase in productivity and morale.

Bring In An Office Furniture Dealer

Moving from a traditional office space to an open office layout can be a time-consuming process. Working with an office furniture dealer can save you time and headaches.

An office furniture dealer will work with you to maximize your office space and create an open office design that addresses your company’s and employees’ needs. They can provide task chairs, desks, multi-purpose seating, work accessories and other office products that accommodate your employees’ various personalities and improve staff efficiency.

Changing over to an open office design can be a difficult feat, and, therefore, requires some consideration before you make the plunge. Be sure to design a positive work environment that will motivate employees, foster communication and increase work productivity instead of hindering progress.

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Topics: office redesign, office design