The 7 Most Common Office Planning and Design Mistakes

Jan 11, 2022

Redesigning office spaces periodically is an essential part of ensuring your team remains happy and your company culture is protected. Whether you’re looking to upgrade a few things or are changing office locations entirely, the right design can increase productivity and overall team satisfaction. However, this process is a bit more complex than many think, especially when proper planning takes a backseat. Keep reading to learn the seven most common office planning and design mistakes you should avoid during an office remodel.

Lack of Breathing Space

It’s no secret that space is everything when it comes to an optimal office layout. But you don’t want to conserve square footage at the expense of your team’s comfort. Breathing room is vital to ensuring each individual stays relaxed, focused, and safe at their desk. Placing people and furniture too close to one another can create a boxed-in atmosphere, increasing stress levels and making it harder for your team to work.

It’s important that while you try to conserve space in crafting a new office layout, you also know where to add some distance. Open floor plans are a good way to ensure there is adequate square footage between team members. Tearing down non-essential walls will make rooms feel larger creating an airy atmosphere. Open floor plan designs are also great for increasing collaboration.

Too Many Distractions

Utilizing an open floor plan can come with a few drawbacks such as distractions. Your team runs the risk of becoming distracted by the increased noise levels, conversation, or even gaudy decorations on the wall. It’s important that you incorporate ways to increase workplace focus within an office design. One easy fix is to select workstations that come with temporary dividers that create better defined personal spaces when needed. This makes it easier to focus on work during periods of time throughout the workday but still reaps the benefits of collaboration with coworkers. Dividers can also help with controlling noise and promoting safe social distancing practices. Using a neutral color palette and large artwork with calming colors and movement is another way you can infuse a tranquil vibe at work.

Poor Traffic Flow

Failing to focus on the flow of traffic in your new office design is a common yet problematic design flaw. Whether it’s individuals walking to and from their desks or visitors getting a tour, every kind of movement throughout the day needs to be accounted for. For this reason, several clear pathways should be available to ensure there is always has an efficient route. Carefully plan out where your furniture will be placed ahead of time to create the best possible flow for everyone in the space. Working with a tenured designer will ensure nothing is missed—it’s vital to remain organized when space planning as even the smallest item overlooked can hinder the overall flow of an office.

Overlooking the Reception Area

Another common office planning and design mistake to avoid is forgetting about your reception area. While this part of your office doesn’t directly impact your team, it’s vital for the visitor experience. Reception spaces are hubs of hospitality where visiting clients and prospective employees should feel welcome. They’re also a great way to create a positive first impression of your company. With a strategically designed reception area, you can ensure your guests feel comfortable and accommodated while presenting the best features of your brand. Don’t miss out on this chance to draw clients in and show them how you can be of service.

Unaccommodating Breakrooms

Just like you should have an accommodating reception area for visitors, it’s also important that your has a spot to unwind and mingle. Breakrooms are the perfect spot for members of your team to kick back and relax for a few minutes before returning to work. This time to decompress is vital for minimizing stress and helping individuals find the mindset to focus. You’ll want to devote as much time to planning out this area as you do to the other areas of your workspace. Here are a few key factors to consider when designing a breakroom:

  • Comfortable and ergonomic seating
  • Healthy food and drinks
  • Areas for communication
  • Games and activities
  • Not Enough Storage

    Make sure that you set aside ample space for additional storage as well. Though advancements in modern technology have slowly eliminated the need for physical records and files, offices still require a place to store crucial pieces of equipment. Not everything can fit out on the floor, and keeping equipment that isn’t used every day organized is essential to creating an organized workspace and ensuring there is a proper place for everything. Designating a spacious storage room—and having a plan for keeping it orderly—can go a long way in improving office operations.

    Even if you don’t have the room for a large storage area, you can still incorporate ample storage within design plans. Clever furniture like rolling filing cabinets, for instance, can move to any part of the office you wish and hold loads of supplies. Compact workstations can be programmed with their own built-in storage capabilities and bench seating with storage can hide unslightly office supplies.

    Failing To Hire a Professional Designer

    One of the biggest mistakes you can make when it comes to designing a new office is managing the process on your own. Deciding on a layout and flow for your office space can be an incredibly tedious and frustrating experience if you don’t know what to look for. Hiring a professional design team is the best way to ensure you are creating an intuitive workspace design. There are so many steps that go into designing a space that truly works for each unique company. While it might be tempting to design your own workspace to save some budget, using a tenured team of designers who have experience with space planning in addition to furniture selection will ultimately save you money in the long run.

    When it comes to designing the best office possible for your team, you want only the most experienced designers on the job. Rework’s Chicago-based interior design team will work with your company’s specific needs to craft the perfect layout, furniture list, and even color scheme for you. With years of office design projects under our belt, we’re confident that we can develop the most optimized plan that is aligned with your company’s goals. We also offer fast furniture delivery and installation services to ensure minimal downtime. Reach out today—your new office is just a call away!

    The 7 Most Common Office Planning and Design Mistakes