Office Layout: Cubicles vs. Open Space

Office Layout: Cubicles vs. Open Space

Everyone has their own opinion on open office layout vs. cubicles. The extroverts who love talking and chatting might lean towards an open office space, whereas the introverts might lean towards the cubicles. Some say open office space leads to more company collaboration whereas others say it’s more disruptive. About 70% of US offices have switched to an open plan concept. The office layout you choose also depends on what your job entails. Read our blog to see if you should invest in cubicles or an open office layout for your company.

Motivation & Concentration

With an open space layout, motivation and concentration are compromised. A study from BBC capital has shown that there is a 15% decrease in productivity in an open office. Phone calls are a huge disturbance factor along with the coworker that loves to talk about their weekend. Open spaces are more inviting for people to talk to you whenever they want, without respecting your personal privacy. Some may argue that this plan invites creative thinking because coworkers can shout out their ideas or brainstorm whenever ideas come to them but are all conversations work related? It’s easy to get carried away with off-topic subjects during work hours. Everyone has a different way of working. It’s important for managers to understand what layout works best for the growth of their employees.

Employee Sick Days

A study from NCBI found that employees in an open office space have significantly more sick days than employees in cubicles. This statement makes perfect logical sense. If you have someone who gets sick with an open plan layout, they are more likely to spread their germs quicker to everyone else in the office. With cubicles, there is still a chance of employees getting sick but significantly less of a chance since employees have their space and they’re not touching or as exposed to other peoples desks.

What Your Job Entails

Some argue that an open office layout depends on what your job entails. If you’re in finance or accounting, it’s essential that employees get their privacy when talking to clients. However, if you’re in the marketing world, an open layout can invite creative thinking and brainstorm sessions. Before finalizing a layout, think about if it would be beneficial for your employees to sit closer together in teams to have brainstorm breakouts or sit separately. Remember, even if they do have cubicles, this doesn’t mean your team will never collaborate. It just means if they want to have brainstorm sessions, they’ll book a room or talk to their teammate in their cubicle instead of yelling out ideas across the room.

Multi-Tasking & Focus

As humans, we like to think we’re master multi-taskers. Yes, you might be good at it once in a while, but can you multitask every day? The truth is, small distractions can cause us to lose our focus for 20 minutes at a time. Someday’s we might wake up thinking we can conquer the world. And yes some days our minds are a lot sharper, but what about the days when you’re stressed or tired. During those times it’s important that we have an enclosed space at work to rid our mind of excess distractions. It’s stressful if you have to multitask every day at work while trying to regain focus. It can be mentally exhausting for your brain after a while. Even if you do have an open space layout, think about creating small rooms for your employees where they can get away and work if they need to focus or get an assignment done.

Team Collaboration

Employers think there is more collaboration with an open office layout, but our collaboration isn’t about work-related stuff, it’s more about what we’re doing this weekend or after work. When you sit in conference rooms to brainstorm instead of an open space layout, our brains switch over to a thinking mode, because we physically have moved in a room where thinking and business-related talk is supposed to happen. If employees are in cubicles, they are less likely to shout across the room about what they did this weekend, and more work is expected to get done. However, as discussed previously it all depends on your job title. If you’re in a market where team collaboration is necessary to grow your business, then an open space is perfect for your team.

Open Office Layout vs. Cubicles

Once you’ve analyzed the pros and cons, and narrowed down what floor plan you’d like to create for your team shop at Office Furniture Plus! We have a variety of cubicles and open floor desks to choose from. Our team of experts can also sit down with you to decide which office layout would be the best fit for you and your team. Contact us today so we can help you find the perfect arrangement that meets the needs of your team.

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