leadforensics Hybrid and agile office design – which method is best for your business? | Oaktree Interiors

As most office-based working has occurred from home throughout the last year, it has thrown up some interesting questions to ponder about the future of our workplaces – namely, how flexible and agile it can be to serve the needs of employees. However, 'flexible office design' has had a definition shift in recent years, especially due to the rise of the term 'agile office design' – but they are not the same.

agile office layout

Choosing between hybrid and agile office design

Hybrid office design is a type of flexible workplace; flexibility refers to the arrangements between the employer and employee over aspects like working hours and the accommodation of remote working to suit different needs. Additionally, hybrid means that the design will lend itself to these arrangements (such as containing meeting rooms that offer easy connectivity, for example).

On the other hand, 'Agile working' focuses entirely on the working spaces in the office. It means to change and remove the boundaries between staff and their goals to make the business as adaptable and efficient as possible.

So, if you are considering a change to how your own working environment operates, let's take a look at both hybrid and agile working in more detail. With more information about each, you will at least have a general idea of which may be suitable for your own business.

What does a hybrid working space look like?

Hybrid office space features a multitude of different working environments; from traditional desking to secluded pods, to meeting rooms designed for digital meetings with remote colleagues. Similar to what's present in an agile office design, having collaborative space and larger meeting rooms is a crucial part of a hybrid workspace. These are the spaces which ensure that teams have everything they need to let loose their creativity and teamwork skills when they are all together in one place.

Ultimately, all flexible working is about giving employees the room to tailor their working schedules to their working style. This in turn gives rise to greater engagement, improved employee wellbeing, and better productivity.

What does agile office design look like?

Workspaces that are said to be 'agile' will often include easily customisable features to ensure a fully futureproofed office space. This means they tend to include a wide variety of workspaces, especially breakout areas, amenities (such as cafes and kitchens), collaboration spaces, and domestically influenced environments. These spaces are designed to support multiple working styles and to optimise employee wellbeing and productivity – behavioural design features (such as hot-desking) can also be included to contribute to the healthy agile working environment.

Generally, agile working solutions aim to create an active working environment in which employees can stay alert, engaged and less likely to sink into productivity-effecting patterns of inefficiency.

A great example of an agile office design was our work for Brogan Group. Our main requirement was to offer a design that was able to accommodate all the company's current office staff, whilst also considering the possibility of future employee expansion over the coming years. Due to the nature of the business, Brogan Group wanted the office space to be as open plan as possible, whilst still affording employees areas away from any disturbances and noise. Our design achieved these aims, thanks to the combination of both solid and sound-proof glazed partitions, as well as the incorporation of the latest designs in office furniture solutions.

Which office style is best for your business? Why not ask the experts?

By now, you should have a general idea of which style fits your business best – we can help you to make the best-informed decision here at Oaktree Interiors. With over three decades of experience in the industry, we have assisted all manner of business types to create office interiors that work for them and their employees, rather than simply be 'a place to work in'. Why not have a look at our case studies section which contains numerous examples of the designs and resulting fit-outs we've created for our wide and varied client base.

If you would like to speak to us directly about anything hybrid and agile office design, get in touch with us directly by calling 034521 86955. You can also send any e-mail enquiries to hello@oaktreeoffice.com and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.

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