A great office doesn’t need to be large; in fact, there are plenty of benefits to being a little on the smaller side. Whilst it’s important to be smart about reducing clutter and finding storage alternatives, designing a great space requires a bit more insight and planning. Here are our top tips for designing a small office that facilitates communication, brings in business and keeps everyone happy.
- Use a layout that reflects your organisational structure
You should consider the flow of internal direction when designing the office – it’s not just about the business model, it’s about how you plan on running the business. The positioning of each employee matters – their placement reflects the flow of direction of the business. A manager, for example, may sit in the middle so that they can see what everyone is working on and give employees ample opportunity to approach them.
- Create a flexible, open environment
Research has found that open, small-scale offices actually increase the exchange of information, create a positive social environment that supports learning, accommodate greater flexibility, and don’t hinder the ability to work productively. In other words, cubicles don’t always work – they can actually make employees less productive. Although privacy will be a problem, this can be met through the addition of private spaces.
- Reflect your businesses’ attitude
If you see clients in your office, it should be an accurate reflection of your business objectives. Try to understand how customers might view the business and ask yourself what sort of image you want to represent. If you don’t see clients, you should also consider how the space represents itself to both current and future employees. The architecture itself reflects an attitude – how you choose to practice and communicate, for example.
- Use frugality to your benefit
Do you have any existing office furniture, such as a couple of workstations or couches, that you can continue to reuse? This can help you to save money on replacement pieces, allowing you to invest in more expensive pieces that you don’t already own. What sort of atmosphere are you looking to create? The furniture doesn’t all have to match and the comfort of your employees should come before everything else.
- Create small perks for big impact
It is important to address whether you should spend money on little perks (such as a decent coffee machine) or whether you should just pay your employees more. Having a small office actually gives you the opportunity to offer these sorts of perks, as they’re not that expensive to keep replenished and they’re something employees appreciate. Having access to a coffee machine all day every day is highly valuable.
When dealing with a small office, we hope that the tips outlined above have enabled you to come up with the perfect design. We do, however, understand that knowing how to use the space effectively can still be a challenge, which is why we hope that you’ll take advantage of our space planning services. We can create an effective fitout for offices of all shapes and sizes, even the small ones.