Depending on the nature of your work, collaboration and interaction can be a large part of your daily life. Traditional cubicles and enclosed spaces are often part of office layout design, but can hinder communication and collaboration. It’s time to consider an office design that encourages interaction.
Adding open space, ample seating, and functional furnishings can encourage interaction among employees. Meetings and group interactions that once took place in boardrooms now take place in versatile spaces that are easily accessible to everyone. These areas are open and close to individual workspaces, but the office layout and dedicated partitions allow the spaces to be separated. Increasing and encouraging interaction between employees can improve collaboration and lead to a more enjoyable environment, but why?
Interaction makes a difference
It’s no surprise that human interaction is beneficial to morale and creativity. Effective office layouts and creative use of furniture encourage professional and social interaction.research done by mayo clinic and Harvard Studies on Adult Development Introduce the benefits of increased interaction in the workplace.
Research has shown that encouraging interaction leads to happiness, reduced stress, increased loyalty and engagement, and overall healthier lives. Building positive relationships leads to increased happiness. By building these human relationships and bonds, we have a solid system in place to support working people.
Encouraging interactions in the workplace can help build these relationships and create a more positive workforce.Research referenced by forbes It demonstrates a direct correlation between strong social ties and workforce productivity.
Facilitating interaction through smart office layout design greatly increases the chances of creating a collaborative and positive environment. Designating places to gather and collaborate can improve not only your office environment, but your business as well.
Collaboration in the hybrid workplace
Hybrid models are becoming increasingly dominant in evolving work environments. There are many reasons for this, but the way an office is designed plays a big role in the success of an employee’s work. The hybrid work model requires employees to come to the office part-time, allowing them to do most of their work from home. Employees are not always in the office, so their hours must be counted.
One problem with the hybrid model is the difficulty of collaborating on joint projects. This is why it’s important to provide areas for your hybrid workforce that foster collaboration and interaction. Proper office layout design gives hybrid employees the opportunity to interact effectively with their colleagues. Designing spaces that provide space for workers to socialize and work can meet their need for interaction. Collaboration spaces are resources for your hybrid workforce to communicate and interact.
Promoting interaction with furniture
When we think of traditional collaboration spaces, conference rooms come to mind. However, the ways in which interaction is facilitated are changing. Collaborative and co-working spaces create areas where employees can gather and work together. The layout and furnishings used in these areas allow you to create completely separate areas of the office to work in.
Seating solutions have one of the greatest impacts on employee interactions. You can create areas that are great for gathering, but employees are less likely to occupy the area if there are not enough seats available in the area. There are many forms of seating that can be used when creating these spaces. Less formal seating, such as sofas and other soft seats, provide more comfort. This can make the area much more desirable, but it’s not always the most practical.
Collaboration areas allow employees to get out behind their desks and connect with others.
Functionality is also important when providing seating. If the goal is to create a common area for working, the seating should be well combined with the work surface. If you have a large co-working space, seating functionality should reflect its use. Comfortable seating suitable for those tables may surround a long table. However, collaboration spaces aren’t always designed for large groups.
A work booth can encourage small group gatherings of four people or less. These booths provide a secluded place for employees to work. It also often provides an escape from the noise of other offices. Booths may not accommodate large groups, but are designed to provide a private his area for employees to gather and work together.
Choosing the right furniture
It’s important to keep functionality in mind when deciding which furniture to use to facilitate interaction. If properly designed, these areas have the potential for higher traffic and provide collaborative spaces for a variety of purposes. It may be perfect for a small group, but it may not be perfect for a larger group.
Most office furniture is modular. Modular furniture can be easily rearranged for different purposes throughout the office layout design. For example, you can use modular sofas and add or remove seats. A modular work surface should also be considered.Easy to push and move tables provide employees with versatile collaboration areas for different group sizes and activities
Office layout design for interaction and focus
There are many things to consider when designing an office to foster collaboration. Employees need to feel comfortable, want to be in the space, and feel their needs are met. Don’t limit your collaboration space to just professional interactions. It should be a place where employees enjoy spending time and talking to others.
As hybrid models become more popular in the ever-evolving workplace, fostering interaction and collaboration is critical to maintaining relationships and maintaining communication.
Collaboration areas should not be enforced. If employees are likely to work at a conference table, they should not be forced to use comfortable seating such as sofas. Employees and offices have different needs. What works as a collaboration area in one office may not work in another.
One of the main considerations when designing a collaboration area is its intended use. Used for brainstorming? concentration? learning? How you use the space has a lot to do with how it looks. Employees who need concentration and concentration may find a private seating area to be the best fit. Brainstorming and creative sessions may benefit from comfortable lounge seating. By building collaboration spaces based on employee needs, employees can make the most of their space.
collaborative but flexible
Designing a collaboration area can be difficult. Giving your workers the tools they need is important, but make sure you make the most of your area. Some offices don’t have the luxury of designating an area for brainstorming and another area for presentations. Offices often have to make do with the space they have.
Flexible furniture that can be easily moved and rearranged serves multiple purposes and helps employees make the most of their space. Nest modular desks to create a larger work surface, use partitions to create private areas, and moveable office furniture to quickly and easily convert areas to new uses. But designing a functional and collaborative office is more than just choosing the best furniture.
Creating a gathering place can be a distraction at work. Therefore, it is important to prevent or limit the impact of collaboration and socializing on the rest of the office. Conversations and additional noise can carry over to the rest of the office and distract people working in traditional workspaces.
A specially designed partition solves this problem. Acoustic panels and furniture help attenuate and absorb sound. These noise solutions help limit the amount of noise that emanates from your collaboration space. These partitions make it easy to create collaborative spaces. This can create seemingly separate areas for workers to congregate.
A collaboration space should serve multiple purposes. Choosing the right furniture for your workers creates a solution to their needs. Creating flex spaces and using flexible furniture is one of the most effective ways to encourage interaction and collaboration.
Is It Worth Redesigning Your Office?
More interaction between colleagues improves not only the work environment, but also the performance of the company. Sometimes work requires a co-working space, and sometimes it simply makes it easier. As hybrid models become more popular in the ever-evolving workplace, fostering interaction and collaboration is critical to maintaining relationships and maintaining communication.
Eliminate the loneliness of cubicles and telecommuting offices by creating dedicated areas for employees to gather and work together. Collaboration areas allow employees to get out behind their desks and connect with others. Adding comfortable seating, strategically placed acoustic panels, and a large work surface are the first steps to improving performance and morale. Encourage interaction with others and create the necessary areas to do so. Creating a space that promotes such exchanges is necessary not only for workers but also for business.
Looking to improve collaboration at work? Then check out StrongProject’s collaborative furniture collection.