Five considerations for space management optimisation in the modern workplace

2 August 2022

The modern workspace must be collaborative, productive, and inclusive for all.This concept of space management may seem simple enough, but there are aspects that require careful consideration before you can truly harness the power of your workplace.

What is space management?

Space management consists of evaluating, planning, and managing the tangible floorplan of your workspace. 

At Kerr Office Design, our designers use data to make informed decisions on floor planning, collaborative space design, and desk/hot-desk allocations.

By understanding the benefits space management can provide your team, and adopting effective space management principles, you can build an optimised space that your employees will be proud of.

Start with a solid plan

You’ll need to nominate a project manager to research the task and lead as the primary decision maker. Planning the workspace internally will be less expensive – but highly time-consuming. Not quite sure of the best approach? A thirty-minute conversation with a member of the Kerr team could help bring some perspective to this critical planning phase.

To ensure you are an advocate of an inclusive organisation, consider the individual requirements of your employees. 

You may want to run an online survey, arrange lunch meetings to share potential designs, or conduct team huddles to find out what kind of space various teams want and need when working in the office. 

Should you be considering a new office space, the Kerr team would suggest that you initiate the planning phase at least six months before your targeted move-in date. 

Consider your furniture selection

Before you start rearranging the furniture, consider whether a fresh look would be a better option. 

Many start this process with the task to find the perfect ergonomic desk chairs. The modern workplace favours those that feature; height, width, and depth adjustments; attention to lumbar support; and armrests with padded fabric. You can easily find yourself spending a little more than you initially budgeted, but it will benefit your employees’ wellness in the long run.

Consider port, power, and tech requirements

Critically,  the location of plug sockets, ethernet ports, printers, proximity to Wi-Fi routers, and the required space for rooms with large display monitors must be considered carefully, based on the needs of your workforce.

If you have an IT department, involve them in this part of the process. Before moving your workspace around – what are the limitations and opportunities around tech?

Build your workspace around collaboration

Since the pandemic, the Kerr team have found clients are dedicating more than half of revised floorplans for areas dedicated to collaboration. 

The use of collaborative spaces can take many shapes – from formal meeting spaces designed for presentations or group meetings, to the modern informal social spaces that allow staff to unite in a more comfortable and organic style.

The key objective is to foster an environment of open discussion – a place to connect and build relationships.

Save space for headspace!

Reserving a percentage of your floorplan for team members to escape for a few minutes of headspace is considered a best practice in the modern workspace. 

Plan to offer a work-free area that allows employees to feel comfortable and recharge for a few minutes away from their desk.

Plan for team expansion

Involve your human resources department when considering projected employee growth. How many team members do HR plan to hire in the next year? 

Will they require workspaces? How many team members will adopt hybrid or remote working? Will meeting rooms be congested as a result?

With many companies now promoting hot-desking in the workplace – would it be possible to have seven desks for every ten employees? Assuming at any one time, team members could be on annual leave, sick leave, working from home, or travelling for business?

In summary, planning is key to space management. The ability to course-correct your project with learnings from your various team departments is paramount to ensuring the office design you settle on is optimised. 

Planning your next office design and fit-out is a huge task, especially while running your day-to-day business. Agreeing upon designs, sourcing materials and contractors – while managing deadlines – is a full-time job. 

Let Kerr Office Group take your fit-out aspirations and make them a reality. Contact us today to discuss your requirements in a no-obligation session.

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