An increasing number of companies are demanding activity based offices, which should be constantly evolving and feel like a second home. Creating an activity based office is a strategic management issue that requires conscious and purposeful change work with regard to culture, working practices and technology. It doesn’t suit everyone, but companies that are implementing the entire process have much to gain.
“Nowadays it’s important to create an appealing workplace where employees are content, but also an office that attracts new staff. Premises need to be adapted to the company’s business. You can’t copy someone else’s concept; you have to find your own solution. The importance of spontaneous meetings between colleagues is something you have to consider, but also the need for individual rooms and quiet zones to provide opportunities for focused, productive work,” says Désirée Walkenström, Letting Manager at Fabege.
Open and social offices
Offices are becoming more and more like our second homes, and they should preferably have open working areas and allow scope for social meetings. The trend is towards eliminating the difference between who we are privately and who we are at work. Our colleagues are often also our friends, which is why it can be appropriate to hold workshops in café-like settings.
“Our customers want their employees to enjoy being at work and it’s having a positive impact on the office environment. One of our customers, for example, employs a full-time barista, while another has chosen to install a playroom for its employees’ children,” says Désirée.
Reuse of furnishings
Even approaches to furnishing are changing with the advent of the activity based office. Groups of sofas can section off rooms and become a setting for relaxed discussions. Another trend is reusing and furnishings that can be simply adapted.
“Ten years ago, entire offices were destroyed when companies moved. These days we try to save things like electric fittings and rugs. Companies are more open to change, which demands flexible solutions such as movable walls or lighting fitted in a way that enables desks to be moved,” says Susanna Elvsén, Market Area Manager at Fabege in Solna Business Park.
Persistent focus on health and sustainability
Health is continuing to gain significance, and several of Fabege’s customers are choosing to make stairs more appealing, to inspire employees to take them instead of the lift. One customer has gone a step further and does not allow its employees to book meeting rooms on their own floor, to encourage them to move around more.
“Our customers want sustainable solutions when it comes to offices and the surrounding environment. We work according to the Citylab Action sustainability model, which gives us access to studies that can inform city district development, for example how we should design plaza areas,” says Susanna.
About Citylab Action
Fabege participates in Citylab Action for the Solna Business Park area. Citylab Action is a forum for sharing knowledge of sustainable urban development, organised by Sweden Green Building Council (SGBC).