You’ve built your dream team and established yourselves with some great work; now it’s time to ensure your office environment is up to scratch.
Here at Powwownow, we think remote and flexible working is a hugely beneficial aspect of modern work. However, when you have a team working on projects together, it’s important to have a functioning base for everyone to meet and get some great work done.
Invest in the right tech
If you’ve ever worked in an office and been supplied with outdated, slow and cumbersome equipment, you’ll fully appreciate why investing in the right tech for your staff is money well spent. Providing fast-working and fully-functioning gear will streamline every process, from the mundane to the essential.
Likewise, if your business has specific processes for various tasks in place, it’s worth investing both time and money into either finding or creating software that supports it. Ian Monk, founder of Bathrooms.com, believes it’s essential for his staff to be able to access any and all information wherever they are. He invested in the best mobile technology to facilitate exactly that:
“Staff can bring laptops into all meetings, run reports and slice data in real time in response to questions raised,” explains Monk.
“We find that time and energy is saved when our team are able to communicate on the go and from anywhere. Access to emails, the internet and calls in and around the office are key to the way we work. It allows people to work in a style that suits them and really drive the business forward.”
The open plan office debate
Open plan offices; some workers love ‘em, some couldn’t think of anything worse. Many start-ups and newer businesses in general automatically opt for the open plan layout, but it’s ultimately up to you to weigh the pros and cons of each design.
An indisputable advantage of the open office is both its cheapness and its ability to adapt to growth. If you’re planning on expanding your workforce substantially, you can save a huge amount of time, effort and money by adopting an open plan style; with fewer walls to contend with, you can fit more desks into the same square-footage.
Many open plan aficionados claim the layout helps encourage collaborative work, especially when managers are working in the same place as the general workforce. After all, you might only have to shout up to ask a question, not walk up and knock on an office door. However, those who dislike the structure claim it rather breeds a sense of anxiety and competition between workers, as they have no privacy.
Don’t neglect the basics
When you’re busy deciding between PC or Mac and, of course, which conference call company to go with (hint: choose Powwownow *wink*) it can be oh-so easy to forget about the basics. You’ll stop preaching the benefits of your chosen operating system when your workforce is complaining of backache thanks to uncomfortable chairs.
You could scrimp on things like chairs, storage, printers, etc., but if your workforce is unhappy with them, the small problems that result can really put a dent into the productivity of the average day.
There’s no need to spend big bucks, but before you get lost in the joys of tech spec, make a list of all of the basic requirements to keep your team happy and comfortable at work. Take suggestions from your colleagues about what they’d like – a thoughtful desk plant can mean the difference between a happy worker and a miserable one.