As Daniel Craigâ€™s character in the film â€˜Layer cakeâ€™ said â€“ â€œThatâ€™s a very expansive questionâ€. And to be honest "what makes a well designed office" is not an easy question to answer.
And to be fair â€“ they are all correct.
You see, there are so many elements to consider when looking at an office. You need a designer that is realistic in their approach, whilst also being creative and thinking of ways to combine practicality and interesting features. There are good office furniture companies that will do most of this for you â€“ and save you the interior designer charges. They will even manage the project for you to ensure it all looks as it did on the plans.
There are basics to consider:
1. What do I need from the space? Do I need anything specific such as boardroom, cellular offices, a canteen, or a large reception area?
2. Will I have high foot traffic areas â€“ such as call centres, or training rooms? Have we allowed good corridor space?
3. Have we considered where natural light is coming from, and what is done to make the most of that?
4. Have we looked at noise levels? Is it wise to put the accounts department beside the sales team? Will the inevitable sales noise be a distraction? What can be done to reduce noise levels?
5. Is the company planning to increase staff levels in the future? Will we need to be able to increase the capacity in the future with minimal disruption?
Of course there are many more factors to consider, but these are just a few.
The key to a well designed office is that there is no 100% correct answer. That is â€“ there is not a â€˜one size fits allâ€™ solution. Every business is different, and every building is different too. The most important element of a well designed office is that it does what itâ€™s supposed to do for your business. Of course there are basic parameters that must be met in terms of health and safety and legal observance â€“ but ultimately an office should reflect company values, and look after itâ€™s customers and staff.