Workspaces suffer from wear and tear just like any other real estate, though what makes a big difference between living quarters and those meant for working is that offices are supposed to be much more formal, but also shared. This puts a certain pressure on their design as we try to make them not too bland or sterile, but also to keep them professional. And what better opportunity to achieve all of this than when you start renovating the space?
But before renovation begins, you have to consider many factors, can’t just start swinging a sledgehammer around the place and throwing paint until it all falls into place. These 8 things listed are the basics of any office renovation so read through them carefully.
How to Secure Social Distancing
It is likely you will not yourself be in charge of, or working on the reconstruction itself, but rather a licensed construction company will be doing it, but thinking of social distancing in this age is twofold. For starters, during the reconstruction itself make sure that construction workers have enough space for everyone to keep apart, and to have a disinfectant at hand, but more importantly, to plan the office so later on you can keep the required distance and privacy of everyone in the office.
Planing desks with at least two meters between them, as well as the possibility of dividing the office into cubicles should be a top priority.
Organizing the (Re)Construction Site
This type of project needs careful planning of the construction site itself. Is the office in a private residence, or a busy corporate building? How loud can you be? Where will you dispose of your waste? All of these questions need to be answered before you call in the workers.
Concerning noise – there isn’t much you can do but try to use hand tools instead of power tools, or work in shorter periods so you don’t disrupt others too much. This has been a prevalent issue in most parts of Australia. For waste management consider a skip bin hire Perth, one of those large containers that are later carried away by trucks. As there is a lot of dust and debris from this kind of work – normal trash cans are not enough and will start overflowing soon.
Make a Detailed Plan
As any architect will tell you – you need a plan, on paper, of what you want before you start renovating. Renovating “on the go” will only lead to missed deadlines, ugly solutions, and a higher cost. That is why several copies of what you have in mind have to be handed out to everyone beforehand so that you know that everyone working on the renovation is on the same page and that there will be no unneeded improvisation.
What Is and Will Be Popular?
A fresh start for a renovated office sounds nice – but how long will you and your colleagues enjoy this environment? Such large projects need a lot of thinking ahead to secure the investment made – will those materials, furniture, colors, be stylish in ten years too? Or will they be worn out and in need of another major renovation?
Consulting home decoration magazines and talking with architects is your safest bet here, as they should give you good ideas on how to treat this delicate matter.
Making a Pleasant Environment
One thing is certain, and that is that the old-timey cubicle office was generally a depressive idea. Today we are smarter and know the benefits of indoor plants for the office, the importance of leisure rooms in work productivity, how it is better to have natural light instead of bland LED lamps, etc.
Therefore one should strive to renovate their office in this way – to make it as pleasant to work there as possible. Motivational posters are one thing, but making the space so that you feel welcomed and motivated is another entirely.
How to Furnish
Office furniture is sometimes recycled into the new, renovated space, but more commonly is sold and new furniture is brought in. There is a huge selection of styles and options to choose from today, most of which are premade though some workshops still do custom pieces for a bit more money.
The most important thing to consider here is size, where certain pieces will be able to fit, and how large they need to be. Only after that do you start looking at their color and shape, though it is best to keep them uniform in style. That way the whole office appears more elegant and well planned out, and it is possible to move pieces around and replace them with one another with ease.
The modern office has one problem that older buildings and spaces didn’t have to solve – the increasing number of cables that need to be placed somewhere. Cable management has become a sort of an art form, presenting itself in the form of neatly organized, zip-tied, and color-coded lines that run behind desks and on walls. The long-term solution is to get rid of all the cables and embrace wireless technology, but we haven’t reached that point yet, to have cable-less office spaces.
In the meantime – make a blueprint of where you will need wires around the office and make a route for them in a logical order. The easiest solution is to staple them to the wall and floor, but if you can get by bypassing them through the ceiling and along existing electrical wires – even better.
Conference and Leisure Rooms
Larger offices and business buildings will always have a conference room, a centerpiece of the show known as the company meeting. As those are meant to be used by everyone they shouldn’t be particularly decorated but rather left bland and neutral, so as not to distract from what is being discussed.
Common rooms and leisure rooms (with magazines, video games, coffee machines) are to be lightly decorated or left with the possibility to be decorated by employees and colleagues themselves. Couches and bean bags are especially popular in this type of environment!
It’s a real shame if you have to come to work 8 or more hours a day in a place that makes you feel depressed and unproductive. Taking care that offices are clean, good-looking, and pleasant should be one of the top priorities of any manager or employer, even if it means doing a full renovation