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Aug 31, 2017

Industry insights,

Designs for maximum productivity

If you take a typical office environment, it’s likely that the office design and layout has been aimed at reducing costs by maximising the available space, and more often than not, you’ll have your desk, in your team and you might not move for years. There’s a new way of designing office space that has started to reach our London and City based locations, and it centres on helping people to do better work and to work smarter by creating inspirational environments, rather being confined to one area.

These office spaces focus on discipline and creating the right environment to support different types of tasks. A great example of such a building in the making, is the recent unveiling of the plans that surround the new luxury £1billion London based HQ for Google.

Complete with sleep pods, sports pitches and a rooftop running track, and areas they are calling ‘pause areas’, Google really have every aspect of work life balance covered off. For the more active there will be an Olympic size swimming pool, a well-being and fitness centre that includes a gym and an indoor sports hall for all sorts of games. Even the roof top gardens has a 200-meter running track.

Google has always been renowned for creating offices that push the boundaries with environments that generate great performance.  In their current offices in central London, they already offer an array of additional working areas, with one likened to the inside of a pub and the other, your Nan’s flat! Furnished with comfort in mind and completed with floral wall paper, they provide staff with an alternative to the stuffy meeting room and inspire great productivity.

Ok, so we are not all going to be able to build an office to the same scale and comparability, however, there are some significant things that Google put in place that would be easy to replicate and improve the learning, the productivity and the overall wellbeing of your staff.

Think about the discipline

Different tasks require different environments. Consider how you might be able to create a few separate areas of the business that are just for creative thinking, or collaborative ideas. A perfect example of this, was discovered last week by our UK Sales Director when he went to a client’s meeting. They had created an Ideas shed, which provided their staff with the perfect place to get away from the grind and generate the big ideas.

For the more serious of workers, it might be wise to create spaces where hot desks can be set up and individuals can work in a quiet space that allows them to fully focus on their tasks.

The social element of work can also be one that’s sometimes overlooked. Think about what space people have to eat, drink and be merry (metaphorically speaking). Our breakout area has a blackboard for thoughts, an X-Box and a darts board for the more competitive among us to use. It definitely helps to have an area that’s just for relaxation.

The shed of ideas

 
We are going to be reaching capacity soon at our current office, and plans are already in place for the next year or two to create a 25,000 square foot office, that can equally provide our staff with the right work-life balance, with leisure facilities and plenty of breakout areas perfect to get away from it all. I doubt we will have an Olympic size swimming pool, but you never know maybe one day.