We find our clients want to explore more open and collaborative work environments.
For example, the Alternative Workplace (“AWP”) model. AWP is characterized by mostly open concept and an abundance of common areas commonly referred to as collaboration spaces. One of the cornerstones of AWP is that the traditional 1:1 ratio of office space to employees is closer to 1:1.3 or in some cases, ratios as aggressive as 1:2.
In short, employees show up at work and are assigned an available workstation. Typically, the employee is provided with a secure fi le cabinet or pedestal on casters for their personal work fi les that can be taken to their assigned workstation for that day. Since not all employees spend the entire day at their desks, this model sounds great as a means of reducing your real estate costs by not having to provide designated workspace for all staff.
However, there are some issues with this model. AWP does not appeal to everyone.
In order for some people to be productive, it is important for them to have their own,
private space. It is one thing to reduce your real estate costs, but not at the expense of
productivity. The second issue is that some work functions do require designated spaces. Unless you are a large Silicon Valley high-tech company where the AWP model typically makes sense due to demographic, cultural and work function reasons, you may only want to implement AWP for selected areas of your organization hence the term “Modified AWP”.
Our experience tells us that this model works well with teams such as Sales, Client Account Management and IT. A longer term benefit of AWP can result when other functions within the organization observe success with the initial test groups and warm up to the idea of the AWP. Over time, a cultural shift and greater acceptance of AWP could be achieved.
Excerpt of an article written by Scott Mulligan
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