How to redesign your office for better space utilization
Designing an office isn’t a one-time event. Today’s office spaces have to be fluid. With the expectations of today’s modern workforce and increasing advancements in technology, it’s important to continually evaluate your office space strategy to ensure it supports your workforce in staying motivated and productive.

5 signs it’s time to redesign for better office space utilization

Here’s when to consider a refresh, and the office design ideas you can use to give your spaces an effective makeover.

1. In-office focus and productivity are low

Have you noticed more and more projects aren’t getting completed on time? Or your star employees who used to hammer out a task in an hour now take three hours to finish the same work?

These are all signs it’s time to minimize distractions to improve office space utilization. This could mean updating your current color schemes or bringing in natural light.

If you currently have an open-office layout, consider getting desk partitions or building small breakout meeting spaces so employees can focus and get their heads-down work done distraction-free.

While the color of your walls and office artwork might seem minimal, color has been proven to positively impact mood. Incorporating blue, green, and yellow shades can boost focus, productivity, and creativity. And adding plants has been found to increase productivity and reaction time by 12%, according to a study from Washington State University.

Lighting is another area that can have a positive or negative effect on office space utilization and productivity. Poorly lit offices cause eye strain, headaches, drowsiness and boredom — none of which are ideal for your employees or workplace performance. The solution is natural light. As a study found that people who work in environments with this lighting sleep better at night and therefore show up to work better rested and ready to be productive.

2. You want happier, healthier employees

In addition to the influence of color, natural lighting, and greenery on wellbeing, consider incorporating areas for employees to recharge, such as rooftop gardens, individual pods for gaming, an on-site gym, or even a break room with social activities.

A balanced work environment that offers ways to work as well as socialize helps workers be more relaxed and happy, which ultimately ramps up innovation and productivity.

3. Teams or departments need more space flexibility

Having a total open-office layout may not be the answer. Creating more flexible workspaces might be as simple as rearranging furniture or putting in a few adjustable walls. Consider creating “neighborhoods” tailored to each team’s needs, or incorporate bookable touchdown spaces with a desk hoteling solution.
When employees have the flexibility and freedom to move as their day or current task calls for it, they will perform better and be more satisfied in their work.

4. You’re experiencing growth

Business is booming, and you’ve recently had an influx of new hires. This is where the workplace design trends of desk hoteling or activity-based working come into play.

Desk hoteling is a good fit for improving office space utilization during times of company growth. It supports a hybrid workforce by providing reservable spaces for those who choose to come into the office while allowing you to reduce your ratio of workstations to employees. Activity-based working is similar to desk hoteling in that it provides a variety of workstation types (e.g., standing desks, couches, open tables, conference rooms, etc.) so employees can work how, where, and when they are most productive.

Effective office space utilization for your growing workforce means providing a range of work environments that facilitate different working styles.

5. You want to attract new talent

A company’s reputation matters in recruitment, but so does office design. One study found that a company’s workplace design has a bigger impact on attracting employees than salary. Another showed that Millennials and Gen Z expect a best-in-class tech stack in the workplace.

It might be time to consider offering additional physical amenities, like an in-house gym, yoga studio, or childcare services. Make your office more modern by updating to the latest tech and adding colors, textures, and furniture that creates a modern environment while encouraging engagement. The U.S. General Services Administration found that flexible workspaces help companies hire and retain talented workforces. To gain these benefits, ensure your organization provides a workspace that gives employees options to choose how and where they work best.

Improving office space utilization with an office redesign

With office space utilization software, you’ll be able to track metrics as you make changes to the amount and types of space within your workplace, so you can measure the impact of redesign on your occupancy patterns.

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Jonathan writes about asset management, maintenance software, and SaaS solutions in his role as a digital content creator at Eptura. He covers trends across industries, including fleet, manufacturing, healthcare, and hospitality, with a focus on delivering thought leadership with actionable insights. Earlier in his career, he wrote textbooks, edited NPC dialogue for video games, and taught English as a foreign language. He hold a master's degree in journalism.