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What Is Workplace Consultancy?

Updated: Jan 15

Workspace Consultancy

Are you unsure about the future of your real estate strategy? Perhaps you need to decide whether to refurbish or relocate your office, but you're not sure which is right for your company. If so, you'll benefit from workspace consultancy.

 

But what is workspace consultancy? We've been helping companies across the UK with workspace strategy design & build since 2008, and this is a question we get asked regularly. Many companies know they need to make major changes to their real estate but don’t know where to start.

 

Workspace consultancy is a process that helps you to understand the role your offices play in your company's future and create a strategic plan to suit that role. In this article, we'll go through the different tools and processes that are often included in workspace consultancy. By the end of this article, you'll have a better understanding of what workspace consultancy is, what is involved, and how it might help your company.

 

What Does Workspace Consultancy Include?

Leadership Workshops

Leadership workshops involve speaking with your executive team, as well as leaders from other departments such as HR. They help to define your vision for the space. Using both group 1-to-1 sessions, your consultant will analyse the workspace challenges your leadership team are dealing with.

 

They will also help your leaders to build out a vision for the space. This is not about how many desks and the colour of the chairs, but what it achieves for your company. Whether this is improved collaboration, a smart building that positions you ahead of the competition, or whatever your needs are. Building a defined and unified vision will guide every decision throughout the project, so this is crucial.

 

Workspace Surveys

Sending out online workspace surveys to all your staff is an excellent way to include everyone in your workspace. Surveys gain a diverse range of perspectives, are quick to launch and convenient to complete. Many programmes run multiple rounds of surveys, building on the results from previous surveys.

 

Initial workspace surveys focus mainly on the way staff currently work. Common topics are space utilisation and role requirements. Later surveys focus on the kinds of environments that would help staff perform better. This enables your workspace consultant to understand how your people currently use your office. This covers how they work now, how would prefer to work, and most importantly, the gap between the two. This provides essential insights into how your office designs need to change.

 

Staff Engagement Studies

Staff engagement is well known to be a crucial part of personal and company performance. According to research by the Harvard Business Review, an engaged employee is 45% more productive than a satisfied worker. Yet gauging staff engagement can be difficult. The easiest way to measure staff engagement is through anonymous surveys.

 

Staff engagement surveys ask questions relating to your people’s satisfaction with their work in general, not their office. Common questions include “How do you feel about work today” and “Are you proud of working for [organization]”. This sort of question is very relevant to workspace consultancy. A Steelcase report has shown that “workers who are highly satisfied with various aspects of their workplace also demonstrate higher levels of engagement”.

 

Occupancy Studies

While surveys may be quick and inexpensive, they do rely on self-reporting, which isn't always accurate. Not all of your staff may respond to the survey, and others may not estimate their time accurately. Space utilisation systems, on the other hand, provide reliable, quantitative data on how your people work.

 

Using cameras, sensors and trackers placed throughout your space, regular snapshots are taken of occupancy levels. This builds up a detailed picture of exactly how your people use the office. This is incredibly valuable, as it guides how many desks, meeting spaces, etc. you need in your new office. It also indicates ways in which you can improve the productivity of your people.

 

Is Workspace Consultancy Right for You?

If you're unsure about your real estate needs, workspace consultancy can be very helpful. The process can help you understand how your workspace is currently performing, what your company needs from your workspace, and how to bridge that gap. However, it's not right for every company. If your upcoming project brief is relatively straightforward and you are happy with the current performance, then consultancy will be an unnecessarily expensive and time-consuming addition to your project.

 

Now that you know what workspace consultancy is, what is involved, and how it might help your company, you’re able to decide if workspace consultancy is right for you or not. If you're still not sure, you may want to speak to one of our workspace advisors for bespoke assistance in your decision. You may also want to read Do I Need Workspace Consultancy? To learn more about workspace consultancy, read Workspace Consultancy FAQs: Your Questions Answered.

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