Shared workspace can foster collaboration, creativity and a sense of community. Though an open floorplan and the accompanying noise and disruptions may impact productivity, it can also be argued that increased visibility of others working in the same space may encourage efficiency and creativity.
According to Rightsize Workplace Solutions Director Shannon Filo, the key is to strike a balance. “Companies require multiple areas and a variety of spaces, some open, some private, some collaborative, and some lounge,” said Filo. “Everybody is different and likes to work differently. Several different sized rooms can accommodate people who are going to utilize shared offices. You also have small lounge areas where some people prefer to work in a reclined chair or sofa versus sitting at a table or desk.”
Some ways to strike a balance between collaborative space and private space include setting aside rooms for teamwork and conversation, identifying particular times of day when more noise is acceptable, or introducing headphones to minimize noise. Enclosed and open office space should be in close proximity so employees can easily switch between spaces as a task or situation requires.
If a company has employees who are frequently out of the office, private office space can be shared between several individuals on an as-needed basis. Furniture in a shared space needs to be comfortable, durable and meet the needs of multiple employees. For example, fully adjustable desk chairs, ergonomic keyboards, sit-to-stand desks that can be adjusted by whomever uses them, and ample storage space for all using the space.
Open space can be divided by sound diminishing privacy screens that can be moved, rather than fixed cubicles. There should be ample space for company growth, with rooms to meet the changing needs of employees.
Shared workspace can take on a variety of forms – open space that is shared simultaneously by multiple employees, a space that is used at different times by several employees, and space that utilizes technology allowing workers in different locations to collaborate virtually.
“One thing employees in shared office space like to have is a space they can call home,” said Rightsize Account Executive Heather Conard. “It’s helpful to have some personalization so employees know it’s their own space. It establishes a little bit of ownership.”
Call Rightsize at 800-815-8592 and turn your office into a stylish and efficient shared space.