Less is more
Our last office provided desks for 30 persons, our new office has 15 desks. So did we downsize our team? No, not at all! We have even added new talents to our team! But with the changed post-pandemic work environment we have become used to working from home. During the pandemic we have switched to full-time remote work for our daily business. So switching back to working full-time in the office feels like a waste of the investments made in our home offices. Therefore, when the lease of our office came to an end, we decided to evaluate how we wanted to organise our teams. We wanted to provide the most suited environment. The solution required a whole new way of organising our desks, but in return we needed less desks than before.
Our solution was a flex desk environment in a smaller office. A drastic change from what we were used to before the pandemic. In a pre-covid world we all had our designated desks. But with the introduction of part-time home work after the height of the pandemic we often had a half-empty office. And we can assure you, working in an office surrounded by empty chairs isn't the most motivational place to challenge yourself. Therefore we decreased the amount of desks. But doing so removed the personal desks we all had in our previous setup. Changing from a personal desk to a shared desks system proved to be the hardest part in our move. To ease this transition we provided every desk with a fancy ultra-wide monitor over USB-C and a common setup over all desks. The screens are height-adjustable so even the biggest height differences between the team members could be accounted for. When you arrive at the office in the morning you can just choose a desk and get started. No struggling with connecting or sharing your laptop. Just take a seat, adjust your screen's height and get on with the workday.
Thoughts after one week
After one full week in our new office we have discovered some new things and have seen a few predictions about our new work environment confirmed. First of all, seeing people work motivates you to concentrate on your own work. There are a lot less empty seats so the atmosphere feels a lot better. Secondly, the switch to shared desks is manageable. We had prepared a lot for this before our move: new screens, a personal locker for everyone and a one size fits all desk. And even though you see many returning to the same desk in the office, we don't experience any struggles with getting started in the morning. Humans are animals of habit, but a lot less territorial than you might think. A last thing we noticed is a lot less predictable, many people come to the office on a regular basis since the move. With the fresh atmosphere and the great desks we saw an improvement in engagement at the office. The office feels like a new start, a welcome change from our home offices. And most of all, a suited clubhouse for our team.
But 15 seats for a team of 30+ members? Hasn't it happened that there are more people than desks in the morning? Well, no. During the pandemic we developed a platform for desk reservation called Wolfplanner. Every time you want to come to the office and use a desk you can register it on Wolfplanner. Wolfplanner manages our workspaces. The Wolfplanner app was an in-house project we ran with our previous interns and we are happy to enjoy the fruits of a successful internship, even when most of them have become permanent team members! Would you be interested to switch to flex desks with your team? Or are you in need of a post-pandemic planning tool? Let us know and we'll get in touch!
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