Alternative office-space solutions are the fastest growing trends in the office space industry today. This growth is fueled by changes in:
1. Employees’ expectations of their workspace and workplace
2. The millennial effect within the workforce
3. Technology, which has made remote officing, flexible hours and telecommuting much easier to maintain workflows and information exchange
Depending on the industry, there is often an expectation of the workplace and workspace. In the past, an office or workspace was a symbol of status, achievement and position within the organization. The new generation of workers have different expectations of their workspace, partially because they are more accustomed to using technology – and to a lesser degree their education has changed their attitudes towards status and achievement.
The next generation of office workers changed what they valued, so they now use different symbols for status and achievement. An physical office is less of a symbol than it was in the past. In some cases, employees value not having an office more than having one! It is this adjustment in attitudes toward offices as a symbol for achievement and status that has enabled alternative workspaces to grow in popularity the way they have.
Technology has been a catalyst for employers to move to providing more flexibility in-office hours, telecommuting and remote offices. To a large degree, technology has made this possible by its ability to maintain workflows and information distribution. The cloud, the ease of building VPN’s (Virtual Private Networks) for remote workers and person-to-person communication using skype, Google Hangouts and more, provide a way to have face-to-face meetings when necessary.
Fixed offices and assigned work stations not only take a lot of space, but they can also be expensive. Having an employee who can work from almost anywhere (and only needs to come into the office space a few times a week or less) can free up a dedicated workspace for another employee that needs to spend more time in the office.
Big companies are leading the charge and opening up their office space by replacing cubicles with non-designated work areas and comfortable chairs where employees can literally use their “laptop” computer on their laps! So who says smaller companies cannot move away the walls and have team space?
Team Space is becoming more popular, because it is often more reflective of the needs of the team. The more your team is comfortable where and how they work, the more creative and productive they can become. Offices that are designed around activity-based working not only save space, they also promote a productivity-based culture.
Small businesses these days are more consumed with fulfilling the needs of customers. To get this done well, having happy and productive employees represents the best way to accomplish the needs of a business. Team space does not only help with keeping employees and customers happy, it helps with the bottom line.
Examples of who could benefit from having team space
Companies with an outside sales force often have salespeople come into the office for meetings, product sampling, to pick up printed brochures, and occasionally do some paperwork. Having a full-time desk for each sales person is a waste of space and money. Technology has changed the way we work. Gone are the days of needing a computer on every desk.
Technology-based companies such as software, app and game developers of all sizes are finding that team space is not only saving them money and increases productivity, but having a non-traditional office space can help a business attract the hot young talent it needs. Just look at companies like Google (who recognized this concept year ago). They have “Cool Spaces” to work from for their team.
Some low-tech companies who want to foster a creative and collaborative environment have found team space to be an asset. They get to save on how much space they rent, and they get to build teamwork in an inviting space. Collaboration and teamwork are not fostered in a walled or cubical office environment.
Even large companies that have a team working on a special project, will look at renting off-campus team spaces for a collaborative team to work independently of the rest of the company. Most often they will seek a team space in an already set-up office business centre – so that the infrastructure does not have to be built just for a particular project. Yes, no need to set up a telephone system or to purchase office furniture and office printers! A business centre provides those essential items.
When Sirius Satellite Radio entered the Canadian market, they needed team space for 30-plus workers. They were looking for a permanent headquarters, but needed to get down to work right away. So what did they do? They rented team space for over a year at Telsec Business Centres while they searched for and built their permanent home. Salesforce.com (the World’s #1 CRM) was also a tenant at Telsec, utilizing team space while they found a permanent new home.
Besides these examples, there are many types and sizes of companies and organizations that have used team space at an office business centre like Telsec. Why? Because team space works for them – and it can work for your business too.