Activity based working or ABW is a new generation of working that is based around a colleague carrying out their work in an active manner. This is generally away from the main station they usually would work from.
Is it effective?
It is extremely effective in the way that it encourages trust, exercise, and environmental stimulation. It is also effective by decreasing the amount of ‘anchor desks’ required. This frees up your capacity as you could have 15 people working in different zones and also have your anchor desks full by natural rotation. Therefore your real-estate footprint increases inhouse. Most of all it generates opportunities for collaboration and culture within your firm.
Does it work in New Zealand?
I would be honest here and say so-so. I say this because we have the tendency to do a lot of things half assed here. Excuse the bluntness! So many companies approach me wanting some hot desks and a breakout. They think they will achieve ABW. But really they need to commit to the whole office rather than a segment as colleagues become confused and feel guilty using those breakout areas to work from when other people aren’t around the office. Therefore they will only be used for lunch or informal conversations.
What do you need to make ABW successful?
1. You need a series of ABW spaces. Not just one.
2. Consider going fairly paperless
3. Up the technology stakes. Are you on Wifi, is your system accessible by logging in? Can you have skype calls in various places instead of traditional meeting rooms
4. A mixture of anchor desks and floating desks. This will cater to people that are chained to their desk all day, or people that can work freely such as marketing, HR or sales.
5. The willingness to be unique. Purchase new furniture, and be open to an inspiring space overhaul.
Overall I think every business is unique. And it really is important to engage a professional to guide you through this process. There are lots of advantages and disadvantages to ABW. There are ways which we can implement elements to provide a collaborative culture within your business that will work specifically for you. Contact Pocketspace today for a consultation!