The work environment is shifting rapidly, resulting in new challenges and opportunities for companies in the UK and around the world.
This evolution has seen an end to the traditional ways of working, as the landscape of work is redefined by advanced technologies, changing demographics, new societal values and rapid globalisation.
With buzz words like agile working, flexible working and activity-based working making headlines these days, we thought it might help to break each one down and figure out what it all really means.
Agile working is all about creating a flexible office and productive environment. By creating different working areas within the office you can ensure your staff have the complete freedom and flexibility to work where they want, when they want.
Rather than forcing individuals to undertake all their work at one setting (usually a desk), agile working allows people to physically choose a work setting where it is most suitable for them to complete their task.
The agile office is designed to create flow from intense, focused work to impromptu meeting areas and formal meeting rooms, depending on the work an individual is undertaking.
It allows flexibility in working style. This gives employers an exciting opportunity to shape how people work in an enterprise workplace and to reduce real estate costs significantly.
Agile working is all about connecting processes, people and technology in order to create a dynamic workforce. By providing a variety of areas where individual needs and collaboration can come together simultaneously, you can increase the productivity and performance of your business.
“Agile working is all about connecting processes, people and technology in order to create a dynamic workforce.”
Flexible working is about bringing people, processes, connectivity and technology together, allowing for flexible working patterns and office space. It’s about letting people work from home if they need to, during the hours that work for them, and with the equipment they need to stay connected.
Finding the most appropriate and effective way of organising your office space into a flexible working environment allows your employees complete agility with access to a workspace that has been designed to include all the equipment and space they need, when they need it.
“80% of workers say that flexible working options are important to them.”
Activity Based Working
Activity based working is a philosophy to make work more effective and efficient, but also more enjoyable for both the organisation and the employee.
This vision is realised by focusing on the employees and giving them the freedom (within boundaries) to decide for themselves how to work, where to work, when to work, the tools to use and with whom to collaborate to get their work done.
Activity based working recognises that through the course of any day, people engage in many different activities and that they need different types of work settings to accommodate these activities. Generally speaking, fixed workplaces are actually used for only 50% of the time, and that’s a huge waste, not just in terms of square metres and sustainability, but also in operating costs.
This style of working says goodbye to unnecessary rules and procedures, permanent workplaces and to rigid working hours. Activity Based Working promotes knowledge-sharing, faster and better collaboration and personal accountability. These aspects make work more enjoyable and more challenging – ultimately, improving productivity and professional service.
“Generally speaking, fixed workplaces are actually used for only 50% of the time, and that’s a huge waste”
How can Office Principles help?
Our office interior design team work in tandem with you and your employees to fully understand the nature of the flexible, agile and activity-based office environment you want to produce.
We find that by focusing on the tasks and functions required in the working environment rather than the office space itself, the opportunity exists to replace the rigidity of the conventional office with a flexible workspace designed to encourage individual choice.
Take a look at some of the agile working spaces we’ve created and get in touch to start your office design journey.