As the world evolves, so must workspaces. Technological advancements have revolutionised the business landscape at an unprecedented rate; from e-commerce to automation. In the workplace, this translates to increased flexibility and mobility in the way we work.
To improve workplace productivity and motivate employees, businesses must adopt office practices that complement the ongoing trend in the labor market; flexibility and mobility.
“We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us.”
– Winston Churchill,
A growing number of organisations are realising the importance of flexible workspaces. Startups, SMEs, and Fortune 500 companies are embracing the changing tides in the industry. But what are the benefits of flexible workspaces? What do businesses stand to gain from flexible serviced offices.
What Exactly is a Flexible Workspace?
A flexible workspace is basically a fully-serviced office that requires little-to-no set-up costs, and minimal time to set up. It offers the features of a conventional office, but without the hassle of designing, set up, and long term leases.
The idea of flexible workspaces is rooted in the concept of co-working. Co-working spaces offer a centralised shared area, surrounded by small or large private offices. The shared area typically houses various amenities, lounges, and conference rooms. This gives employees flexibility and mobility throughout the day.
What are the Benefits of a Flexible/Collaborative Workspace?
Regardless of your company size, flexible workspaces offer value to both the employees and the business.
Market expectations and consumer habits are constantly evolving. As priorities shift, organisations must align their workforce to correspond to the changes. This fast-moving world demands a certain level of agility; which is offered by flexible workspaces.
One of the main benefits of a serviced office is the flexibility offered with contracts and leases. Businesses no longer need to be tied to a fixed lease,meaning they can enjoy greater flexibility as market conditions change. For example, a company can deployer a project team closer to a target market for a short period and relocate immediately after finishing the project.
Flexible workspaces significantly improve the bottom line by allowing businesses to cut costs. Businesses only pay for what they need now, on a month-by-month basis, rather than what they may need two years down the line.
For example, if you’re setting up a regional office and you have around 10 employees, renting a long-term full-floor office would result in unnecessary costs and wasted space. But if those employees were placed in a flexible workspace, they would still enjoy the perks of dedicated office space, minus the costs of a traditional model.
- Foster Connection and Interaction
In an increasingly virtual world, characterised by improved connectivity and remote working; does working from an office still offer benefits? Or is working from home the new normal?
The truth of the matter is that people who thought working from home would be great are now recognising that the office plays an important role. An article appearing in the Harvard Business Review notes that “face-to-face interactions are by far the most important activity in an office.”
Employers also have to consider the needs and preferences of employees
- Employees Comfort and Motivation
Flexible workspaces are designed for activity-based working that aligns to the employees’ working style. This gives employees greater flexibility over how and where they work thereby increasing their productivity, work quality, and satisfaction. According to a study by Herman Miller, worker comfort affects operational efficiency by increasing job satisfaction, retention, productivity, and well-being.
- Improved Scalability
Looking to expand your business? Planning to build a team in a test market before entry? Serviced offices allow you to scale, regardless of your company size. Setting up an office is fast and moving in is easy, especially since operational tasks are catered for.
Flexible offices offer a ton of benefits that can improve the bottom line, while fostering employee satisfaction. Businesses no longer need the kind of real estate they once did, and can therefore reduce costs.
In other words, flexible workspaces are the future! In an increasingly dynamic and fast-paced world, businesses need to adopt practices, policies, and office designs that align with the changing times.