By reading this post, you can tap into the different elements of what makes an effective office layout for your relatively small area and work out how to save space in a small office.We can assume that if you've searched for advice on how to organise small office layouts, space is limited in your workspace. But we can assume little else beyond that. Use these layout tips and ideas in your own space though and we are confident your small office will produce big results.
Our effective office layouts for small offices are:
- Plan Desks To Leave No Dead Space
- Encourage As Much Natural Light As Possible
- File Digitally And Remotely
- Keep Staff Together
- Don't Waste Working Desk Space
- Choose The Right Operator Chairs
- Encourage Team Meetings Amongst Your Desk Layout
Below is a little further explanation into how each of these layouts can be created. If you'd like some more inspiration and a little deeper theory into why offices need to offer certain things in order to be a successful working space - as well as lots of inspiration tech and furniture ideas - check out our free guide.
Or for effective layout practices, continue reading.
1. Plan Desks To Leave No Dead Space
Given the fact that floorspace is limited in a small office, be sure to layout your desks in a way which minimises or removes any dead floor space.
This means not having two regular desks form an L shape into the corner of a room. This setup leaves a large amount of space unable to be used because users' chairs will clash into each other or it will create a scenario where the corner floorspace is redundant. It's poor office design practice, especially in a small space.
As an alternative, you could used single desks designed to fit in the corner of a room, where the user is sitting facing into the corner instead.
2. Encourage As Much Natural Light As Possible
There are trusted studies and surveys that have found what workers want in order to work well and in a positive frame of mind is plenty of exposure to natural light. It helps to create a more natural, calming and therefore productive atmosphere in your office.
It boosts mental wellbeing in your office because it helps promote the link between your workspace and the natural environment. Read more on how to incorporate nature into your office layout design and how it helps here.
3. File Digitally And Remotely
Using digital cloud storage and filing services can dramatically improve the effectiveness of your small office space. Valuable space does not have to be taken up by physical storage and filing systems like cabinets, store cupboards and desk pedestals.
Having no at-desk storage for individual employees means you can afford to use smaller office desks because anything beyond their essential physical documents (note paper, for example) is stored electronically.
Cloud systems offer more physical space benefits than something like a server room because the "server" is accessed completely remotely and via an internet connection. This helps to promote off-site or remote working from home, which means you could organise your office to have less desks than employees because a set percentage will be working from home on any given day.
4. Keep Staff Together
But if remote working isn't practical for your business, you can save space in a small office by making sure all the team is together in the same space. Use a central bank of desks if your team is very small and keep everybody in the same room. If you need meeting space, that's what any additional rooms should be used for instead of giving certain employees their own private working space.
If you can't fit your team around one bank of desks easily, line the perimeter of the space with outward facing desks and have a central meeting table for collaborative working.
5. Don't Waste Working Desk Space
Make sure you only use desks which are as big as your team needs them to be in order to complete their tasks. If somebody works on a laptop with a notepad when in the office - maybe a visiting site manager or sales rep - there's no need to provide a larger desk with storage.
The same goes when it comes to choosing chairs.
6. Choose The Right Operator Chairs
Make sure you don't use chairs which are too large and over-engineered for purpose. Pay grade shouldn't equate to the value of a chair, for example. But that is a common misconception amongst our customers.
The people who never leave their desk throughout the working week need the chairs with ergonomic features, whilst somebody who visits now and then or is only static at a desk for short spells needs a more basic chair. It's important to choose the right chair for the job role and intended level of use.
Quite often, remembering this can also open up the chance to save space too.
7. Encourage Team Meetings Amongst Your Desk Layout
Making sure your small office has multi-purposes is a great way to make sure that you get the most use out of your limited space. Whilst holding team meetings and discussions within your small office might be a necessity due to a lack of alternative space, that doesn't mean you can't make this easy to complete through sensible furniture and layout choices.
Make sure the whole team can easily see each other. Keep lines of sight clear and unobstructed to promote easy discussion. Try and foster a culture of group discussions and quickly working together to resolve problems. This will mean staff are comfortable working in a collaborative space rather than feeling like a group of individuals cramped into a small office.
This means having mobile chairs and lightweight desks which can be reconfigured until you find a set up which suits your team and space.
Want To Know What Else Your Office Needs To Offer?
If you want an office which caters for employee morale and wellbeing as well as encouraging productivity as a by-product, take a look at our guide to what your office needs to offer in 2017 and beyond. Press the button below to get your copy and see all the latest furniture and tech, trends and design theory...