The way we approach work and workplaces, is ever-changing. Technology, pandemics, and new ways of thinking all contribute to progress, and it’s important for businesses and people to keep up with these changes.
One new trend in office work and design is the personalised approach, and we believe that is here to stay. Essentially, this means prioritising and learning as much as possible about how each of your people works best, so that their experience in the workplace is as personalised as possible.
Ask the question, how do I make work and the workplace as comfortable and productive for my own people? Let’s take a closer at how to achieve these aims, below.
Why a personalised approach?
Before we do delve into maintaining a personalised approach to work and design for employees, it’s important to understand the benefits of this.
Employees want to feel valued, just as anyone does. A personalised approach to design will ideally meet the differing needs of each of your employees. They will feel valued, and in turn, output and productivity will inevitably improve. This study discusses the need for personalised workspaces and design in offices, and suggests myriad benefits for staff.
Happier, more comfortable and more productive employees create a better working environment, and in turn, a more productive business.
Experiential design is all about how your employees experience their workplace and therefore, their work. Many businesses simply design their workplace based on a template, or copy what another organisation has been doing. However, this fails to take into account the specific experience of your people – every organisation is different.
Employees must feel fulfilled in the workplace, and this often comes back to their experience in your office. A positive experience involves elements such as:
- Hardware and software that works well, without bugs
- Comfortable furniture with ergonomic features
- Ample light and fresh air
- An aesthetically pleasing space, in good condition.
These elements, among others, affect the way your people think about their workspace. Ensure their interactions are positive by addressing these components of your office and your peoples’ working experience.
The digital and the physical must be intertwined
These days, the common perception is that we’re more connected than ever. And we are, through the magic of the web, and the technology that allows us to utilise this connection. However, many businesses are not utilising the connection between the physical and the digital as effectively as they can.
There are now millions of people working remotely around the world, with the figure being approximately 18% of the global workforce post-pandemic. During the height of COVID-19, that number swelled to roughly 80%. For these remote employees, technology is the glue that keeps them attached to the physical world of the office, and their colleagues.
Meetings are one example of the importance of technology. If there is a team in your business, with half on-site employees and the other half remote, communication can be tough. However, meeting rooms with large screens, perfect connectivity and a comfortable layout will make meetings much easier for those in the office.
For your employees at home, comprehensive and easy-to-access IT support is critical, along with the right hardware and software, and training. That means providing high-quality computers, webcams and mics and ensuring that your people know how to use them. What’s more, ensure that management understands each employees needs, so that even when working remotely, they feel the effects of personalised design and workplace experience.
Maintain open communication with your people
It’s important that you’re always talking with your staff, and that there is no chasm between management and general staff. You simply must know how people are feeling at any given moment, so that you can make changes to your workplace or working experience, where necessary (and possible).
For example, it may be that noise in the office is an issue for many of your staff. As a manager, you’ll need to ensure that there are avenues for employees to mention these concerns. And when that’s possible, a receptive manager will be able to make impactful changes that improve the experience of employees.
There are a number of ways to combat noise distraction in the office. For instance, working with an office design company to install partitions and rearrange the layout of your office can go a long way towards minimising unwanted sound. In fact, certain elements such as plants can improve acoustics, by absorbing noise.
Fresh talent is crucial
There must always be one eye set on recruiting new talent to your organisation. New thought processes, creativity and fresh perspectives are always important, and help to ensure your company is continuously innovating.
The way your office is designed and the way your existing employees work has an impact on your ability to attract and retain new talent, even if this may not appear to be the case. Potential employees will take it all in when they arrive in your office, and first impressions are therefore, so important. The first few moments could be make or break.
Working with your people to tailor personalised approaches to work and design creates happier staff and a pleasant working environment. Both of these elements are sure to have a positive effect on recruiting and retaining talent.
Maintaining flexibility in terms of how you design your workplace, as well as how your people work, has great benefits for an organisation. Flexibility means being adaptable to change, and being able to implement changes quickly makes your workplace truly dynamic, and able to provide an exceptional experience for your staff.
Everyone works differently. Some employees enjoy working in near silence, with dim light and few colleagues around. On the other hand, some may prefer a busy working environment, with plenty of chatter. Therefore, it’s important to provide flexible working options, so that your people can choose the environment best suited to them.
Working with an office design and fit-out company comes with a host of benefits, including flexible solutions that many businesses do not take advantage of. For instance, adaptable rooms and work areas that can easily be reconfigured for varying employee numbers, or styles of working.
Speak to a Sydney office design company
At Niche Projects, we have an in-depth understanding of personalised office design, and how to create the best working environment for you and your people. Our design experts have an immense amount of experience and knowledge to draw upon, so we can deliver the best design solutions to fit your business.
To discuss your Sydney office fit-out, get in touch with Niche Projects today.