How do you increase employee productivity & efficiency? There are many ways to do that. One simple answer could be to keep your employees happy. An agile working environment makes your team comfortable, making them happy and ultimately generating maximum output.
Read on to learn what is an agile working environment, how to create it, it’s characteristics, benefits and challenges.
What is an Agile Workplace?
Agile working allows maximum flexibility in the workspace. It increases staff productivity by giving them complete freedom to work from where and when they want and how they want. An agile business environment creates a relaxed futuristic vibe at your workplace.
As an employer or a workforce manager, it’s your responsibility to equip them with all the tools and technology they need to work efficiently.
You can execute agile working successfully to increase the quality and quantity of your work with the information provided in the upcoming sections.
What are the Options of Sitting Arrangements for Agile Business Environment?
In an agile working environment, there can be designated workstations or clusters but not assigned desks for maximum employees. The staff can choose to work from any of these sitting arrangements.
- Seasonal covered and uncovered outdoor workspaces.
- Iso-stations for quick logins or emailing while passing through a work area.
- Standing workstations for increased focus and physical fitness.
- Soft seating areas for informal discussions/meetings and break time.
- Small and large meeting rooms for formal meetings and presentations.
- Quiet spaces for writing, complex works, and study purposes.
- Lounge tables or dining-type tables for small project meetings/discussions.
What are the Characteristics of an Agile Business Environment?
So how to create an agile working environment? It’s simpler than you thought! Add the following characteristics of agile working to your workplace.
An agile work environment can never be confined. Keep the barriers like doors and walls limited and the flow easy to move in and out of space. It’s human nature to feel uncomfortable when confined, especially if your workforce is dynamic and active.
Comfort is one of the prerequisites for increasing staff productivity. If team members feel discomfort in the office, they spend more time and effort adapting to the environment than doing actual work.
It’s challenging and contradictory to bring peace and less commotion into an agile business environment. But peaceful and quiet ambiance is crucial for employee efficiency and a significant part of agile working. You may need to make efforts to increase every employee’s privacy.
The everyday needs of employees should be considered while designing your workplace. For instance, the furniture can be rearranged easily, enough electrical outlets all over the office, provision for a standing desk, etc. Your team must be able to adapt to the workspace quickly by making small changes here and there.
What are the Benefits of Working in an Agile Environment?
Although agile working is advantageous in many ways, the following are its 3 key benefits:-
Flexibility is the core value and most prominent benefit of agile working. Your employees can create a bespoke workflow that spells their rhythm and manages their task load and challenges. Also, working remotely on their own time whenever possible allows employees to maintain a work-life balance.
An agile working environment is set up so that employees know about each other’s schedules and tasks irrespective of hierarchy. The sitting arrangement is such that the team can easily reach their managers. This clarity and transparency increase employee efficiency and productivity.
The agile sitting arrangement and working culture allow the team to collaborate rather than everyone working in isolation. The employees can exchange and work on ideas on a real-time basis. This form of work is more efficient than communication between meetings and through emails only.
What are the Challenges of Agile Workspace Conversion?
Before you reach the “happily ever after,” you may face some challenges while converting your workplace into agile from traditional. It involves a company-level mindset change. You need to bring new talents on board to make this transition successful. And the most critical aspect is your employees.
Employees sometimes feel confused and anxious because of the changes being made to the workplace. It will help if you make this transition smooth as this entire exercise aims to make your employees happy. Another challenge during such a conversion is that managers are not skilled in this regard, It is better for managers to get agile project management certification to manage these conversions.
In a Nutshell
In a way, the agile working environment is the new pop culture of the corporate world. And it’s here to stay as it makes your employees happy and efficient. You can gradually adapt the characteristics of agile working as suggested in this post and transform your workplace for better productivity and output generation.