business people working at desk
Hybrid work
Space optimization

Office space optimization guideline for thriving and people-centric workspaces


May 20, 2024


May 21, 2024

Only 11% of businesses use all their office space, and nearly 45% use less than half. Office space optimization is more important than ever. This guide gathered insights from deskbird and other industry experts to help you create a dynamic and efficient workspace for your flexible teams. When you tackle hybrid models’ unique challenges, like your workplace layout, both productivity and employee satisfaction improve.

Optimizing working space starts with understanding how to adapt to new working styles and technologies. Incorporating tools that support efficient management and use of physical spaces is a big part of this. You’ll learn how to make your workplace more conducive to higher attendance and better performance with strategic changes.

This article covers how to maximize your floor layout, from gathering data on current space utilization to implementing changes that reflect the latest in workspace setup. We share office design best practices to make sure your business is not only functional but also a great place to work in person.

What is office space optimization?

Office space optimization means designing and utilizing workplaces to maximize efficiency and costs while meeting employee needs. During this process, every square foot is used in a way that contributes to your business objectives and people’s satisfaction. Data-driven insights can help you make the most of floor space by adjusting layouts, reducing unnecessary expenses by minimizing lost space, and enhancing productivity through better-designed work areas.

The key to optimizing working space is understanding how your staff interacts with their environment and leveraging technology. For example, tools like IWMS (Integrated Workplace Management Systems) can help businesses make informed decisions about where to allocate resources. This helps design workspaces that foster collaboration and efficiency.

🎬 Watch this less than two-minute video about the features of the deskbird app to learn more about our mission and how we can support your hybrid work environment!

office space
Optimized office space

Why is optimizing your office space important?

Adapt your workspace layout to the new ways of working

Workspace layouts have to adapt to the evolving workplace of today. As a modern business, you need to support a variety of work modes, from deep focus to collaborative projects and remote work. Flexibility lets your employees choose the environment that suits their tasks at any given time, boosting productivity and satisfaction.

A flexible setup design helps accommodate fluctuating team sizes and the on-site attendance of staff, which is crucial in a hybrid work model where people divide their time between remote and office days. As a result, the workplace can adapt quickly to changing business requirements and worker preferences, not just maximize physical space.

When people can efficiently switch between different working arrangements, your physical workplace becomes more functional and attractive. This enables you to foster a dynamic, agile work setting that can adapt to future demands.

Increase office attendance 

Creating a workspace that surpasses home comfort and convenience can also play a key role in improving on-site attendance. Therefore, space optimization can make your office more attractive to your employees by enhancing the setting around their needs and preferences. For example, you can do this by implementing ergonomic furniture, wellness areas, and aesthetically pleasing designs that boost morale.

Adding workplace technology to the physical environment can also make it more appealing for work. A home office can be replicated with video conferencing, quiet pods, and flexible workspaces. It motivates people to return to the office (RTO), not out of obligation but because it’s an awesome place to work.

Reduce your costs on unused spaces

Reducing unused space is the key to optimizing office efficiency. Using tools like deskbird, you can identify areas of your workplace that are often unexploited or underutilized. Implementing a flexible workspace strategy, such as hot-desking or shared spaces, can lower overhead costs associated with rent, utilities, and maintenance.

Embracing a hybrid work model can also minimize the need for extra floor space since people can work from home and in the office. Saving on real estate costs and offering a balance of remote and in-person work leads to happier, more productive employees. 

Leverage the work environment to boost employee satisfaction, experience, and performance


Lastly, office space optimization can also boost employee satisfaction, experience, and performance. It creates an environment that supports and enhances daily activities. A workplace that considers workers’ physical, mental, and emotional needs can improve their job satisfaction. An ergonomic setup can prevent body strain. Relaxation areas can promote mental well-being. Aesthetic upgrades can make the space more inviting.

Biophilic design elements, like natural light and plants, can also improve cognitive function and reduce stress levels, making your staff more productive. Additionally, technology that makes communication and collaboration seamless makes workers feel connected and supported regardless of their working location.

💥 Discover how deskbird helps you boost hybrid work productivity and maximize efficiency!

What are the key steps of office space optimization?

Identify your current office space challenges

Identifying the current challenges in your office space is the first step towards optimizing it. Assess your physical on-site environment to pinpoint underutilized, overcrowded, or inefficient areas. You can do this by reviewing floor plans, tracking space use data, or using sensors.

You should also engage directly with your team to find out what they think of the current setup. Encourage open feedback to determine how the space affects productivity and well-being. With data-driven analysis and employee input, you can develop optimization strategies that meet your business and staff’s needs.

Focus on creating ROI more than cutting costs

Instead of calculating the amount of money you’ll spend to optimize your office, focus on the return on investment (ROI) it will create. Long-term benefits come from high-quality furniture, advanced technology, and well-designed spaces. Therefore, strategically investing in your workspace can increase profitability and growth. 

To foster collaboration and well-being, it might be necessary to invest in ergonomic furniture and modern communication tools up front. Low turnover rates and greater productivity can lead to higher ROI when improving employee performance and satisfaction.

When you invest in improving the work environment, you’re not just saving money. You’re building a more sustainable and profitable business. This isn’t an expense. It’s a trigger for success.

Make data-driven decisions 

Forget about assumptions. You need solid data to maximize your workplace efficiently. Integrate employee feedback to pinpoint inadequacies in different areas. Also, by tailoring optimization efforts to actual necessities, meaningful improvements can be made.

Sensors and analytics can also provide continuous data, giving insight into peak usage times and space efficiency. With this ongoing data collection, you’ll be able to make informed decisions and adapt to how your workspace is used. This maximizes both space utilization and your team’s satisfaction.

Calculate your desk-sharing ratio

A hybrid work environment requires the right desk-sharing ratio. Compare the frequency of in-office attendance to the total number of employees to find a ratio that supports flexibility without sacrificing accessibility. Using this calculation, you’re able to maintain an agile workspace that fits your fluctuating presence.

For example, by using the deskbird hybrid office cost calculator, you can easily determine the best ratio for your office according to your hybrid work policy and the size of your workforce. This may involve shrinking the space, repurposing underutilized space, or setting up shared workstations. Also, make sure to continuously monitor how this ratio affects workspace efficiency and employee productivity so you can make adjustments.

💡 Check out our customers’ reviews to discover what our users think about the deskbird app!

Employees working at desk
Employees engaging in desk sharing

Align your office layout arrangements with your hybrid workforce’s needs and use

Your hybrid workforce requires versatile areas that support a range of activities and working styles. Using technology that facilitates both digital and physical communication, we recommend you design flexible spaces that can easily transition from individual workstations to collaborative zones.

Make sure the layout supports easy transitions and reduces bottlenecks within the office. Spatial arrangements can enhance collaboration while allowing for privacy, answering your team’s diverse needs, and fostering a productive work environment.

Have a closer look at office furniture optimization

Office furniture is important. Invest in modular and ergonomic furnishings that you can reconfigure for various activities and needs. This maximizes space and supports workers’ health and productivity by adapting to different tasks and preferences.

Analyze employees’ feedback and space usage data to adjust configurations. By focusing on adaptability, you boost comfort and ensure that furniture arrangements change as the workplace shifts.

Get support from space optimization tools

You can also make your workspace setup more efficient by implementing space optimization tools like CAFM or IWMS. These tools give you detailed insights into how your space is being used, helping you anticipate layout changes, allocate resources, and plan capacity.

Using analytics, a desk booking system like deskbird also allows facility managers to determine if their workspace is being utilized efficiently. With this information, you can downsize your office if necessary or reallocate resources to meet their employees’ needs. With this predictive approach, you can make sure any changes to your workplace layout are both strategic and beneficial.

Communicate and discuss the upcoming changes in the office space with employees

Implementing office space changes requires effective communication to increase your chances of getting the expected outcomes. Talk to your staff about planned adjustments, collect their input, and address any concerns. An open dialogue ensures that modifications are well-received and employees feel involved in the process.

Maintaining trust and buy-in from your team also requires clear and continuous updates about the progress and impact of these changes. This fosters a supportive workplace culture by showing transparency and valuing comfort and productivity.

Review your office space needs regularly and adapt to change

Maintaining an optimal work environment requires constant assessment and adjustment in response to changing business needs. Evaluate your space arrangements regularly to make sure they’re working.

This ongoing process allows you to stay on top of shifts in work patterns or organizational growth. This keeps your workspace functional, efficient, and aligned with your company’s goals and employees’ needs. Adapting to feedback and changes quickly enhances operational efficiency and fosters a dynamic and responsive culture.

📆 Start a free trial of the deskbird app to give your employees more flexibility with workspace booking and week planning while saving costs!

Employees in office chairs
Ergonomic furniture

How does deskbird support you with office space optimization?

Collecting workplace analytics

With deskbird, you can optimize your office space by collecting comprehensive workplace analytics. With this feature, you can see how people use the different areas in the office to understand occupancy rates. With these insights, you can better allocate space to match your team’s needs, boosting efficiency and employee satisfaction.

Data also helps managers make strategic decisions because they can implement changes based on actual evidence rather than guesswork. With this proactive approach, you can maximize operational efficiency and save money, preventing unnecessary space expansion.

Visualizing real-time office utilization

The deskbird interactive floor plan lets you see real-time office utilization so you can visualize how space is being used right now. With this visibility, you can adjust on the fly and better accommodate fluctuating on-site attendance and changing project needs.

Visualization tools also help with long-term planning by providing clear trends and usage statistics. By continuously  listening to team members, your work environment adapts to meet their changing needs.

Calculating your ideal desk-employee ratio

deskbird’s hybrid office calculator lets you determine the ideal number of workstations you need based on current and projected usage data. It helps you size your work environment without wasting space or resources on excess workstations. By accurately assessing use patterns, you can strike the perfect balance between flexibility and efficiency.

This calculated approach also enables you to monitor crowdedness and excess capacity, making work more comfortable and productive. Plus, maintaining this ratio keeps resilient and adaptable operations, which is crucial for modern companies.

Enabling efficient and smooth use of the office space

deskbird also enables you to streamline workspace reservations and management. Your team members can easily book desks, rooms, and other resources for a smooth use of the office.

Not only does this make daily processes easier, but it also gives people more control over their workspace. Thanks to our platform, you can make changes to space usage effortlessly, creating a more agile and responsive work environment.

Office space optimization is vital for modern businesses that aim to leverage the use of their physical workplace while cutting down costs and boosting employee satisfaction. By adopting office design best practices and investing in advanced space management technologies, you can create environments that meet the expectations of today’s workforce.

The above office design best practices and insights should help you optimize your workplace. With the right tools and approaches, you can then make your company a thriving place for your workers and your business. Request a free demo of the deskbird app to discover how our digital solution can improve your employee experience and get the most out of a hybrid workspace!

Office space optimization guideline for thriving and people-centric workspaces

Annabel Benjamin

Annabel is a hybrid work expert who combines insightful strategies with practical applications to help navigate the changing landscape of modern employment. Her writings provide a wealth of tips, best practices, and innovative approaches to boost productivity, foster team cohesion, and maintain a healthy work-life balance in hybrid settings. 

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