One of the challenges I am seeing with the many offices relocating back into central Christchurch as the new city centre develops post quake, is that the buildings are going up, the floors are all completed, lifts look nice and shiny, the reception area is ready for the first clients to arrive, but behind the scenes, where are the work is being done, the staff still have their well worn chairs because the building budget has blown over the expected amount. This probably sounds all too familiar for those of you who have had to do a repair or rebuild post quake or who have ever built a new house! And for those staff who were told they were going to be getting sit stand desks in the new office, this can be a real let down and affect your staff morale.
However, when it comes to planning for your business’ work space, ensuring that the people who work with you are still able to work comfortably, through having the right office equipment, is paramount in importance if you want your business to remain productive. It’s like building a new house then expecting that the occupants will sleep on the floor, or camp beds for the first few months. Chances are they won’t sleep that well, will get grumpy and not be productive either.
Interestingly enough, there are also companies who do the right thing and buy everyone a new chair, but that one chair may not suit everyone. After all, we’re not all built the same size are we? Many of the mesh backed chairs are hard to adjust or have limited adjustments anyway, so some staff go back to their old chairs preferring their comfort.
So, what’s the best way to plan and be able to achieve the best outcome for your new office space without blowing the budget?
Get some advice on a flexible chair which can easily adjust to suit a range of people. There are a number of chairs available which allow this. Don’t be swayed by the fancy looking mesh backed chairs, which often come with a hefty price tag, but don’t always deliver the comfort. Uncomfortable staff means reduced productivity.
Look at your staff numbers and how many people are in the office all the time – or out? Do you need desks for everyone? Could some sales staff use a hot desk? What are the tasks done by people? Do they need straight desks or L shaped. Again look at the options – there is a big range in prices so do your homework. Yes, you can pay a lot for European style and manufactured furniture, so is it a case of the smartest looking, or a bit of functionality and happy staff.
And if you’re really stuck with what to get or don’t have the time to choose, get some professional help.