How Activity-Based Working Will Affect Office Spaces in Brentford
The post-COVID working environment is poised for transformation as employers and employees increasingly realise the benefits of flexible working. Here we explore the emerging trend for ‘activity-based working’, with a look at how office spaces in Brentford could meet the grade in many ways.
It is safe to say that the pandemic has been life-changing, not least in terms of how we work and our attitudes to it.
Transformation is happening everywhere, and activity-based working (ABW) is becoming something of a buzz phrase as employees start demanding more flexibility and the ability to choose when and where they work. Employers, too, realise the benefits of providing such a creative working environment.
What is activity-based working?
Activity-based working empowers employees to choose how, when and where they work.
For those who spend some or all of their working day in an office, ABW means providing a choice of work settings, each suited to a specific type of task. These settings could be workstations, breakout areas, collaboration spaces or concentration zones.
For remote staff, activity-based working is all about making it possible to work anytime, anywhere, whether that’s from home, in a coffee shop or on the beach. Of course, technology plays a pivotal role in making this happen.
What are the benefits of activity-based working?
The theory is that employees will be more productive and creative when their work conditions better suit the task at hand. Being able to concentrate when they need to, collaborate when it matters, and hold a one-to-one conversation without interruption means staff can power through tasks in the most efficient way possible. And with the flexibility to work away from the office when it suits them, employees feel a great deal more trusted and valued.
For employers, this all ultimately means getting the very best out of their staff which, of course, is a golden opportunity to become more competitive, with business growth the result.
For staff, the benefits of activity-based working are manifold. With more flexibility, workers can enjoy an improved work-life balance and increased job satisfaction. Sickness absence is reduced as a result which, of course, spells more good news for employers.
New talent tends to be attracted to a flexible and creative working model. And existing staff are more likely to stay when their workplace is more adaptable to their needs, both inside and outside working hours.
“As long as the work gets done”
As far back as the 1990s, Interpolis, one of the biggest insurance companies in the Netherlands, implemented activity-based working throughout its offices. Out went fixed desks, and in came autonomy for staff to choose when and where they worked and for how long. The flexible nature of this new way of working infiltrated the company’s culture, and the phrase, ‘as long as the work gets done’ became its motto.
When done well, ABW can prove an exciting opportunity to instil valuable change across the working environment.
With so many people having experienced the benefits of working from home during the pandemic, and employers realising that yes, the work does still get done wherever staff are or whatever hours they work, this transformation in working habits and the inevitable adoption of activity-based working will surely become the ‘new normal’.
How to accommodate activity-based working?
When looking at office spaces to rent or buy, employers should consider how they might be adapted to suit the new working generation and accommodate activity-based working.
So, how to go about creating a work setting that’s suited to activity-based working? What needs to be factored into the office layout design, and are there any particular considerations?
An ABW workspace combines an array of different types of spaces under one roof.
From private zones for quiet contemplation and concentration, and collaboration areas for brainstorming to conference rooms for team get-togethers and telephone kiosks for quick calls to a colleague, the idea is that there is somewhere within the workspace layout to suit every task. And if there isn’t, then it is acceptable for staff to work remotely, wherever they may choose.
Looking for ABW-friendly office spaces in Brentford? The Mille could be the answer
For companies sold on the idea of activity-based working and seeking centrally located office spaces, Brentford makes a very tempting offer, not least because it is home to The Mille, a recently refurbished landmark building ideally located on the Great West Road.
Exceptionally well-connected in terms of transport, with Waterloo just half an hour away by train and Heathrow Airport just 15 minutes by car, Brentford makes an excellent choice to locate for work. But that’s not all. This area is a magnet for those looking for a vibrant, appealing place to live, too, thanks to its riverside walks, its popular Arts Centre and a thriving social scene, as well as plenty of affordable housing.
The Mille is a feature-rich, fully refurbished office building offering all the modern conveniences that today’s workforce demands. Occupants benefit from TREND controlled air conditioning, DALI controlled lighting and superfast fibre-optic broadband, as well as onsite car parking, covered cycle racks and free Brompton bicycle hire. The building has its own café, together with 24-hour access and security.
In terms of office spaces, this Brentford-based building offers fully fitted options, as well as blank canvas spaces ready for you to make your own, with activity-based working in mind if that is the route you wish to take.
Looking for office spaces in Brentford? The Mille could be the answer. Why not discuss your workspace vision with one of our sole agents and arrange a viewing at The Mille?