Running a business isn’t as easy as it used to be, and we’re not even talking about the level of competition out there. Office real estate in cities like Chicago is increasing rental fees by at least 9% per annum. It has almost become impractical for many small business ventures to maintain an office space without downsizing or opening a part of it for coworking.
Your office can make use of industrial mezzanine stairs to add more space vertically, but this isn’t a long-term solution that you can employ for your office. Eventually, your workers will look for a more solid and work-friendly environment where they can do their jobs. Here are five ways to maximise the workspace that you currently have:
This might be easier said than done when it comes to an office. There are simply too many documents to put in a file cabinet somewhere, right? Take a day or two to reorganise everything. Put the documents in folders and label them accordingly. You can opt for vertical storage and shred documents that are no longer in need. You can also replace circular tables with long tables to accommodate more people. You will also need to clean up the furniture, retaining only those that your workers truly need.
Light It Up
Dim lights have that library effect, right? But this is not the way to make your workers more productive. Studies have shown that badly lit office spaces tend to make workers drowsy and lazy. Make sure that your office is well-lit by changing the lighting units. If you have access to natural light, that’s better because all you have to do is draw up the curtains or blinds to let the light in. You may also want to avoid heavy and traditional desks for something lighter such as foldable and lightweight tables in pale colours.
Consider Working from Home
Nowadays, telecommunication is not a problem. You can hold a meeting with a group of people using only Skype or some other platform. You can talk to an employee by calling, texting, and using other platforms such as Slack, Messenger, email, and Basecamp. You can also put up Trello boards to monitor the progress of each project. All of these means that you can allow some of your workers to work flexibly—possibly from their own homes. Technology has already made this possible.
Share Your Space
Have you ever thought of the benefits of coworking spaces? You can send your employees to coworking spaces available in your area if they prefer that setup. However, there’s another way to help you with office rental fees. You can offer your own office as a coworking space. For a minimal fee, you can create a separate zone where other workers can do their jobs. The best thing about this is that you won’t have to shell out additional capital for amenities such as coffee and the Internet. You already have those for your own employees.
Create an Open Layout
An open layout is more conducive to working. Tear down those walls and open up the whole look of your office. This will create more space for your workers. You can just have a small conference room with adjustable walls so that you can close them up if you need to have a serious talk with your team. Otherwise, you can have an open layout where your employees will have more room to move around.
When deciding what to do with your office space, gather your employees around and ask for their suggestions. You’ll be surprised by how great some of their ideas are. Take note of these suggestions and explain to them once you’ve made your decision about maximising their workspace.