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The Good, The Bad and Open Plan Offices

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Open Plan Offices

Are Open Plan Offices Important Post Covid?

The modern office has evolved to adapt to the different ways that individuals like to work. Many companies have been re-evaluating their position on open-plan offices to consider whether this type of office layout is the best overall for workplace productivity. Even though for some employees this means a favourable working environment, others find that the noise levels, endless distractions and lack of privacy can affect their work performance. Post Covid this concern is more evident as employees make their way back into offices and employers seek to redesign their workspaces to attract and keep new talent.

How to Make Open Plan Offices Work for You

There are many ways in which some problems linked with open plan offices can be mitigated so that employee satisfaction and productivity is not affected.

Create separate spaces for different tasks

To minimise disturbances and office noise, separate areas is a must for functions requiring collaboration and group work. This way, those who are focusing at their desks can proceed to do so and those who are involved in a collaborative project and merely wish to socialise can assemble and exchange ideas in a meeting room, lounge or specially designated area of the office.

Empowering employees the use of empty meeting rooms

If a worker needs a few hours of quiet reflection to complete a certain task, then it can be helpful to grant them the use of certain office spaces when not in use. Take into account the reality that everyone has a peculiar working habit – some require background noise and activity, whilst others require complete silence. By allowing employees to use workspaces they need at any given point boosts productivity, as they will be able to focus and complete tasks at hand promptly in an atmosphere that satisfies them and enables their best work.

Lay down the (Open Plan) rules

Create a noise guideline for the workspace. Employees have ways of indicating that they do not wish to be disturbed. It is essential that workers know when they may or may not disturb co-workers, and what constitutes an acceptable level of noise. Some companies may find that background music can be helpful in decreasing other distracting office sounds, whilst holistically designed offices which incorporate integrated lighting and refined acoustics with low level audio are making their appearance in some quarters.

The Benefits of Open Plan Offices

Open-plan offices can be be a boon for employee collaboration, as long as specific guidelines are in place. They can also foster improved employee relationships, and create a good sense of office morale. Open plan offices really never left, they are now more in tune with post-Covid workplace strategies than we may have thought. Indeed, the open-plan layout can embody what its early creators intended it to be – a flexible work space where collaboration is encouraged and people can produce their best.

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