Pros and Cons of Open Plan Offices
Open plan offices have become increasingly popular in recent years, with startups and medium-sized businesses adopting their designs due to their low cost. But do they fit your company’s needs? We’ll uncover some of the benefits and drawbacks of open plan offices, as well as some tips for optimising this type of office layout for maximum productivity.
What is an Open Plan Office?
The term ‘open plan office’ refers to a style of office design where several workers work together in a sizable, open area. They are intended to encourage collaboration and communication among employees, in contrast to traditional office designs that use walls, screens and cubicles to divide workers. Open plan offices often include shared desks, meeting areas, and common spaces where employees can work together on projects.
Are Open Plan Offices Good for Productivity?
So the big question – do open plan offices work? And are there any advantages or disadvantages when it comes to productivity?
Pros: On one hand, open plan offices can provide more opportunities for people to work well together, because they place fewer physical barriers between colleagues. They are free to move around more easily and work in different areas of the office as needed. This can be especially beneficial for companies with fluctuating staffing needs or for teams that need to work on different projects at different times.
Cons: However, they are not perfect for everyone. Open plan offices can also be noisy and distracting, which some studies suggest can lead to lower levels of productivity. Your staff may be distracted by conversations and noises from nearby coworkers, which can make it difficult to concentrate on work.
We think it’s important to try and understand what will work best for your employees. Some may thrive in an open plan environment, while others may prefer a more traditional office layout with more privacy.
Open Plan Office Acoustics – How to Manage Noise
If you’re planning an interior design project for your office, there are some features of an open plan office that should be taken into consideration. As we mentioned above, one drawback is the amount of noise that can be present in an open plan office. Ambient noise such as the hum of computers (or the sound of air conditioning) can pose a problem. Likewise, the generated noise from people talking can also be a challenge.
There are several ways to manage the acoustics in an open plan office. One effective solution is to use sound-absorbing materials, such as carpets, curtains, and wall panels. Another solution is to use screen dividers to create more private spaces for employees. Both ways can help reduce the overall amount of noise in the workplace, making it easier for employees to focus on their work.
Need any assistance? We have a team of specialists who can help you create an open plan office to suit your needs and requirements. We can offer you advice, expertise and invaluable experience to help deliver your project successfully.
Office Furniture for Open Plan Offices
Shared desks, modular seating, and mobile workstations are popular choices for open plan offices, as they offer flexibility and can be easily reconfigured as needed. We provide a wide range of open plan furniture in different designs, shapes, sizes and colours that can be used to build the perfect open plan office. Discover our full range online today.