Agile Working – Implementing A More Fluid Workstyle

Implementing A More Fluid Workstyle

More often, businesses are hiring workplace designers to blur the line between the work/home lifestyle by designing workplaces that are more user-friendly, tailoring offices to its users in an effort to implement a more fluid work style that resembles how we interact with our homes than with the typical, outdated corporate office.

At home, we have a place to eat, a place to sleep and watch TV. We must navigate our workplaces in a similar way, and enable employees to move from a desk to a meeting room, to a breakout space, and a tea-point. Agile working may sound like a modern work style, but most of us do it naturally whether we realise it or not, but what is new is the way workplaces approach and encourage it.


How can we design offices that encourage agile working?

Workplace designers approach the contemporary office with agile working in mind. By respecting the integrity of the building structure, regardless of its shape or size, they can create zones, allocating the right amount of space and resources to each individual.

Workplace consultants analyse how organisations are already working, their styles and trends, and then gather an understanding as to how they would like to work. Together, with the concept of agile working, they create a unique design which implements the ‘sit, stand and walk’ philosophy to help maximise the use of any workspace. This gives individuals freedom of choice. By allowing people to choose an environment that supports them in any given activity, it boosts employee engagement and thus, productivity.

Agile working is a by-product of giving people choice.

Individual workstations

Individual workstations have been the norm since the beginning of office design. Way back when Frederick Taylor designed the open-plan office in the 1920s, each employee had their own workstation and that was that. Nothing more, nothing less.

Despite how greatly office design has evolved, individual workspaces are still a necessity that allows for uninterrupted, concentrated working.

Individual workstations are most effective in private spaces, like cellular booths and cubicle partitions, for people to concentrate on tasks with undivided attention and little to no distraction.

Informal meeting spaces

Informal meeting spaces, otherwise known as collaboration spaces, are often adaptable to small or large groups to exchange and develop ideas. Collaboration spaces are unrivalled in their ability to encourage group work and bring a team together, but the effectiveness is dependent on the task at hand.

These areas are less formal than traditional meeting rooms or conference rooms, and are perfect for quick brainstorms with a team, or a one to one.

Formal meeting spaces

Formal meeting spaces include meeting rooms and conference rooms, and are often an offices designated space for presentations and important meetings with clients, guests and/or staff.

These more formal spaces are often where presentations and pitches are made, big company decisions are discussed and plans are put into action; for these reasons, these areas must be thought out in the design approach to ensure the aesthetic aligns with a company’s ethos, and helps you to bring out the best in people, and win your pitch.

Shared resources and storage spaces

These shared areas can include a design lab, a printing room, or a studio space. These shared areas are often in constant use and are more beneficial when placed in a centralised location within the office to make them accessible to everyone.

By making creating these spaces as a separate hub, it encourages a more fluid work style because its users are required to engage with their environment as opposed to have it all beside their desks or in front of them.

Breakout spaces

Breakout spaces are one of the greatest assets to an organisations’ office. They are welcoming and open spaces that nurture the growth of work culture, and boost interconnectivity within the workspace; areas for people to interact, unwind and replenish their energy.

Breakout spaces can include tea-points, cafeterias, dining areas, arcade rooms and nap pods – small or large, they are designed with the purpose to take people out of their normal working environment and with an intention to relax or stimulate.