Short on Office Space? 5 Space-Saving Tips for Small Offices
As businesses, we’re always trying to expand — our profits, our goals, our team — but we don’t always have the room to do so. Just because you’re limited on office space doesn’t mean you have to be limited on creativity. Even if you have a small office, you can make the space feel bigger and introduce other elements to make workers more comfortable.
Try out any of these five ways to maximize your current office space so you can manage your office design and space, and improve the overall feel of your workplace.
1. Maximize light and open space
Most workers spend their days indoors. If you currently have anything that blocks natural sunlight from entering your office, try to rearrange the layout to let this light flow into your space. Natural light has been shown to increase the overall mood of your workers. It will also make make the room feel bigger and brighter, helping with space management. If you have windows in your office, try to orient your desks to maximize the time spent in front of them. Bonus points if your office has any sort of view or access to the outdoors.
When you’re rearranging office furniture make sure you not only give your workers enough individual space to work freely, but you also leave enough space between desks for people to move around. A crowded workplace feels stuffy, and having people bump into desks will only disrupt the workflow.
2. Reinforce your workplace culture through design
You want to give your workplace a distinct feel to help your workers feel connected to the work they do. Branding shouldn’t stop at your website and business cards; it needs to extend into your physical workplace as well. Especially if you have a small space, little touches can make your workers feel more comfortable in what room they do have.
Your workplace should have a distinct identity that gives your workers a constant reminder of why they’re here and why they should feel connected to the company. Simple additions, like motivational posters or painting your office the same colors as your logo, can have a positive effect. Just be aware of the psychological effects of colors if you go that route.
3. Introduce flexible work spaces and schedules
If most of your workers work independently throughout the day, consider introducing breakout spaces where they can get together and discuss large-scale strategy. Even something as simple as a set of stackable desks that can be rearranged into a large table will do the trick.
These kinds of spaces are crucial for enhancing collaboration and even giving your workers a more informal place to hang out and chat. This will improve creativity in your office as it will feel less rigid.
If you have too many workers for your small office, consider instituting a mandatory work-from-home policy a few days a week. You could alternate your workers to give them the freedom of working from home while making sure your physical office is always populated.
4. Prioritize cleanliness
Messy offices seem busy and out of control. If you have a small space you’re going to want to maximize every bit of it and promote a calm environment. Even simple rules like not allowing coats or bags at desks will go a long way towards preventing the messy pile-up that often occurs.
If you have a lot of paper documentation and other clutter, you might want to invest in office furniture that has extra storage space like filing cabinets and benches. This way, you can improve the appearance of your office without having to get rid of any necessary documents or supplies.
5. Invest in comfortable, functional furniture
Even if you’re an early stage company who’s strapped for cash, you don’t want to scrimp on furniture. Most of your workers will be sitting the entire day so it’s important to maximize their comfort whenever possible.
Balance comfort and function by choosing furniture that maximizes the space while providing your workers with everything they need. Consider standing desks if you're tight on space since they take up little real estate and are also a healthy option. Investing now will mean a happier workforce later on.
Just because you have a small office doesn’t mean you can’t make it comfortable and productive for your workers. Proper space management in a tight space just requires you to be more creative, and the above tips will help you get there.