In today's changing world, agile working and flexible working are an operational benefit that organisations can’t afford to ignore.
Agile working and flexibility are supported by having the right technology, the right culture and the right office environment. Activity-based working means that people can perform their tasks from anywhere, autonomously which in turn drives increased performance and results. However, agile working can only be achieved with high levels of trust and a culture based on empowerment and management by output. This involves having new management skills which allow teams to work more effectively, communicate better and maintain high levels of commitment and performance.
These factors have contributed towards the creation of “the agile workplace”. The benefits for companies who have adopted it are wide-ranging:
1. Increased productivity and efficiency: by giving more power of decision; flexibility and autonomy, responsiveness, efficiency and productivity increase.
2. More innovation: teams empowered to decide where are how they work are usually more motivated and more creative.
3. Higher commitment: having a two-way trust and sharing a common purpose drives commitment.
4. Higher job satisfaction: a healthy work-life balance, along with the empowerment and autonomy needed to accomplish individual and team goals creates higher job satisfaction.
5. Greater talent retention: working conditions offered through agile working helps retain talent within organisations
6. Lower operational costs: agile workspaces make a more efficient use of the footprint available. In any typical workplace, only 60% of the space in occupied at any one time, therefore hot-desking practices mean less space is required, which in turn means lower operational costs.
7. Guaranteed business continuity: the possibility of working remotely reduces interruptions due to bad weather, seasonal illnesses, traffic, potential natural disasters, etc. Thus, normal business activity is not compromised.
We should not underestimate the benefits of this strategy. When it comes to implementing agile working, organisational culture can be the main obstacle therefore it is essential to take into consideration the wide range of activities that take place within the space, but also communicate the rationale behind the change. A change management programme will help ensure a smooth and successful implementation as change can be daunting. In today’s fast-changing workplace, each company needs to find a formula that best fits its goals and aspirations and design a workplace that acts as a central hub and guardian of culture...
The right environment will inspire people, clients and visitors alike.