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Office talks: Coworking offices, hybrid spaces, desk-sharing – flexibility in the office

How to arrange a modern office? There is no single recipe. Which is why we invited experts from various disciplines and countries to talk on this topic. Poland, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, France, the United Kingdom, Austria and Slovakia – specialists from these markets are going to discuss the different European office trends and the varying needs of businesses. We also invited our customers and partners to take part in Office Talks and share their own experience in arranging offices.

How do organizations understand flexible workspace?

Yilmaz Boduk, Sitag, Nowy Styl Switzerland

Flexible workstations for me means desk-sharing and coworking spaces. And especially in Switzerland we know in the bank sector they are using one desk for 2.8 persons and this is something I believe in Switzerland that is going on.

David Barlow, Nowy Styl UK

The office space, the co-working space in the UK has almost doubled in the last year. Manchester and Birmingham have been the highest in the increases. We’ve supplied a number of co-working spaces, Adir – we’ve done three spaces for them. And people find the flexibility that it gives them. Whether it is five people, they can increase as they need to, they can decrease as they need to, it gives them control of their cost and it’s encouraging spaces. There is coffee shops, there is shared desking. Co-working is really becoming a big thing for companies, for individuals, for start-ups, and we can only see an increase in the UK year on year.

Working nomads - how do flexible offices attract employees?

Dominika Feckova, Nowy Styl Slovakia:

While talking about flexible office we should not talk only about desk-sharing. We should also think about the whole office concept. We should divide office into zones. We should think about having a relaxation zone, having a canteen and a standard working space. Why? Because people do talk about business even when drinking their coffee. Having such a flexibility in the office brings more comfort to the office and people are then more effective to work, more motivated to work.

Axel Ueberschär, Ueberschär Büroeinrichtung in Stuttgart

The other thing is that flexibility also allows to perform the work in many different places. It is only thanks to the technology that makes it possible. But this also means that we no longer see workplaces in the offices as the only workplaces, that we may just need spaces that we can see here too, where we can meet people, exchange ideas, where we can spend time together in small groups. This is no longer the workplace as we know it – rectangular, square, practical, good – our workplace can now be in a lounge zone, at a bar table, we can work anywhere we enjoy it and anywhere we like it.

How can we make office a flexible workplace?

Michiel Eggens, Nowy Styl Netherlands:

When designing a flexible office space it is important to take the following three aspects into account. First of all: having a flexible floor plan, second: using the right technology. And third: using the right furniture that can easily be moved and can be used in different office areas or purposes. If these three aspects are taken into account in the design of the floor plan, employees can be much more productive during the working day.

Marc Olivier-Leroy, Nowy Styl France

The latest trend in office environments is hybridization, hybrid arrangement of space with furniture that is mixed across different work areas, such as open space or relaxation zones. Space organisation seems rather free.

You might also like to read our article Acoustics in the office - functionality and design, which gives a deeper insight into acoustics in the office.

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