Increase office productivity with workplace planning software

21 November 2019 4 min. read

Managing and running an office can be tricky. Not only are managers responsible for ensuring their employees are happy and productive, but they also need to make sure the office space is managed properly. These two elements are intertwined, given the importance of office space as a tool for employee inspiration, engagement and productivity, as well as it being a venue to impress and host clients.

However, a big challenge is to ensure that expensive office space also remains economically viable. This could be challenging because as businesses embrace new-age working patterns like flexible and remote working, it often leaves expensive floorspace unused for prolonged periods.

The advent of co-working spaces, driven by the need for flexibility, is transforming the way people work – but what can they teach us? While they may not have set the stock market on fire, they do offer plenty of design cues and innovative ideas to put all the space to use. Whether it’s installing a café to attract more people or using real-time data to optimise unused space by removing or adding desks, meeting rooms or break-out areas to ensure a better return on investment, all are useful tips – especially when embracing a flexible workforce.

Increase office productivity with workplace planning software

The fact that real estate prices are high is not news. However, with the average desk in a London office costing more than £8,000 a year, failing to utilise the space properly is effectively like pouring money down the drain. While moving to a co-working space may appear to be a tempting option, more businesses are realising how turning to technology and data will help them make more of the space they already have. 

Understanding the space first

The key is to know how your workspace is being used. Businesses need to equip themselves with detailed Management Information (MI) about desk and meeting room utilisation – the same kind of data that co-working companies use to keep rooms booked, spaces filled and workers happy and productive.

Embracing flexible working can allow office space to be customised and used to its best potential. It has the ability to brighten-up the space and make it employee-driven. If this is managed digitally through a software system such as HotDeskPlus, businesses can quickly capture space usage and identify trends. Used for a longer period of time, this data can provide useful information on workforce dynamics such as employees that prefer fixed spaces, working with their consistent set of people versus employees who like to experiment and would prefer different seating areas as per their ‘mood’ or availability / task in hand.

This data can be vital when organisations are faced with crucial decisions and need to make alterations that can help them utilise their real estate better.

Making an office space work for you

Whilst small changes in office space can have benefits, using real data can help organisations justify bigger changes, such as turning redundant space into a big meeting area or social space. Also, renting or selling out the area, depending on its potential, can invariably help the organisation in optimising costs and making money.

However, it is not just about the money. It is widely accepted that happy employees, and in particular those whose workplaces meet their needs, make for better, more productive workers.

“When used optimally, a workspace management system can transform the way businesses use their real estate.”
– Christopher Burke, CEO of Brickendon

While shrinking or changing workspace layouts may seem daunting, the worry of people not having enough space when the office is at full capacity can also be tricky. However, these fears can be easily allayed by using a workplace management system that enables employees to reserve everything from desks and meeting rooms to bike and car park spaces.

And of course, in the glorious scenario of demand out-stripping supply, the real time data at hand will simplify the decision-making process for organisations.

Workspace management

Businesses are always looking for ways to reduce additional costs. Optimising workspace can seem like a lucrative yet daunting prospect to most organisations. However, it has been proven to increase desk utilisation by almost 60% and reduce real-estate costs by as much as 55%. In a recent case study, a large investment bank enhanced desk usage following a cost-saving move to a new building with fewer desks than people, significantly reducing its real-estate spend.

When used optimally, a workspace management system can transform the way businesses use their real estate. From providing evidence for an immediate reduction in the real-estate footprint to repurposing the unused space or simply aiding decisions about where future growth should be targeted, the potential can be huge.

An article by Christopher Burke, CEO of consulting firm Brickendon and of HotDeskPlus, a workplace planning tool developed by Brickendon’s Digital division.