The Development of Office Management Environments to Current Designs

Changes in the labor market have brought most of the workforce from the industrial floor to the office environment. The focus has shifted from poor physical work conditions to concerns about the psychosocial work environment. Other aspects that contribute significantly to changing the way we work are developments in construction, fluorescent lighting, ventilation, and information and communication technology (ICT). Advances in construction techniques make it possible to build larger offices with fewer load walls. Better fluorescent lighting has reduced our dependence on natural lighting. As a result, it is possible to build a more spatially open office environment, rather than a four-walled office room and cell office, which is often a one-person door. In buildings where a small number of interior walls have a weight-bearing function, space can be created to meet the needs of existing tenants or be quickly modified to meet the needs of new tenants. Therefore, the office environment can be more easily adapted to suit different uses. Creating a good office environment shows how much environment matters for anyone that will be working in the field of office management.

These reasons, along with attempts to use space more efficiently as well as the benefits of communication, could explain why open-plan offices are becoming increasingly popular today and why many organizations in the private and public sectors use this office design. The impetus towards flexibility does not end with how space is constructed but also includes how the work is carried out. Advances in ICT have made jobs less dependent on location, and many professionals can work anywhere in the office and outside the office, such as in a cafe, library, or home. When the occupancy diversity factor is calculated, i.e. the percentage of an office occupied at a given time during office hours, this assessment shows that office occupancy is a whole peak. To read more regarding this issue, click here.

Self-study desks are a little busier, which encourages organizations to take ideas on flexible working methods. Today, many organizations have used a variety of solutions for flexible work methods where it is common for employees not to have desks assigned separately, but to choose desks in an office environment with an open plan, depending on available tasks.

The environment depends on the task at hand. Unlike traditional, homogeneously equipped open-plan offices that once portrayed an open office environment, this flexible office environment is often colorful, modern ergonomic, and aims to provide a creative work environment for employees. Often, organizations that use this type of solution also allow employees to work outside the office and see the office solution as attractive for the younger workforce. Some examples of organizations that use flexible working methods in Sweden are private companies that market health and personal care products, as well as public companies such as the Swedish Social Insurance Agency. Thus, an open-plan office environment and flexible working methods attract more people. Although little is known about the impact of office type on employee health and performance, concerns have been raised about its impact on employees. Less differentiated classification can be considered a problem, for example, if there is an optimal number of a person to share in an open plan office and having fewer or more people working in such places has a negative impact.

Written by Valerie