New Year, New Office
Well, 2019 is here! It’s a new year and a new you. Our new year’s resolutions vary from personal health goals to dramatic lifestyle changes, making this as great a time as any to move on from the old and start fresh again (in whatever aspect of your life this pertains to). So, after rummaging through your pantry and throwing out all the fatty, sugary snacks, setting aside the pile of old clothes for Goodwill, and scrolling through your contact list deciding which names it’s time to delete for good, consider this one last proposition for upgrading yet another aspect of your life...a new office space.
What better place to start progressing towards your work-related yearly goals than with a fresh workspace? Whether you work from home or have a professional office space, I have a few suggestions to help you update either.
OUT WITH THE OLD
First, we need to start by clearing out your old, unsturdy furniture. Say, “goodbye,” to that beat up wooden desk and the chair that might fall to pieces if you lean back too far. If you’re clearing out an office space, it’s probably time to get rid of those ugly, old cubicles as well. No one wants to be hidden behind gray panels anymore. We’re moving towards the office space of the future; and the future of workplace design is not 5x5 fabric-covered cubicle panels. In order to revamp your workspace, you’ll want to begin with a clean, fresh slate.
IN WITH THE NEW
After you’ve done the grunt work, it’s time to have some fun with your new workspace design. I understand that completely starting from scratch can be a little intimidating; fortunately, you have people to help you with this office transformation process (wink wink).
We’ll start by planning your new layout. If you’re redesigning a home office, this step is probably not necessary since you’re working with only a single workstation and layout options are limited. A major trend in workplace design and a feature that many modern workplaces have today is a flexible office space. This means that the office includes a variety or working environments. From open floor plans to private cubicles and quiet group or meeting rooms. You should try to fit as wide a variety of workspaces as your space allows.
However, keep in mind that if all your employees are performing a similar task which requires the same type of work environment (which is unlikely), you may only need to provide one type of workspace. For example, if every employee completes only individual tasks such as writing or data entry, only private cubicles to work in should be sufficient. You may also require minimal variety if you have a very small space with less than 20 employees.
Now that you’ve created your floor plan, with the help of a few professionals, we can dive into selecting your office furniture. For an office space, you’ll want to outfit your workplace with a variety of cubicles, offices, and desks to fit your flexible environment. I recommend investing in modular office furniture, especially for growing businesses expecting to expand or move in the future. Modular furniture and cubicles are adjustable, easy to add on to and take away from, simple to unmount and reinstall, and can serve a variety of purposes, making them the optimal solution for many workspaces.
Additionally, you have a few other decisions to make. Considering that many cubicle systems are now customizable, you are able to choose panels heights, colors, accessories, cubicle and office dimensions, and more. Choose features and elements that fit your brand and something your employees will also appreciate. Glass cubicles and offices make the space feel clean, open, and professional while allowing natural light to flow throughout your space, but without eliminating anyone’s privacy.
If you’re redesigning a home office the guidelines are slightly different. You probably won’t be cubicle shopping anytime soon. Set a theme for your space (one that flows with the rest of your house) and customize a design and choose furniture that will work for your space and provide everything you need to efficiently work from home. Check out these home office design tips for the ultimate workspace for some inspiration.
Now that you have a new layout and new furniture, it’s time for a new, modern design and decor. Again, choose accessories that fit your brand, but make sense in your new space. For example, if your workplace is large and open, incorporate acoustical decor and privacy panels. Include a variety of seating options to compliment your flexible environment and diverse workstations.
A new year means a new beginning and new goals. Start the year off right with a new office as well. Whether your new year’s resolutions include a promotion, reaching a new sales quota, receiving the quarterly bonus, expanding your business, or even starting your own business, a new office space is the perfect place to start.