There are many valuable benefits when adopting an ABW plan which is why it is so popular. What is really important though is to understand why it is so good and what it actually is. Let's start with what it's not.

Some people who work in an open-plan office think they are in an activity based working environment. They are not. An open plan office is just a traditional office layout with fewer walls and pieces of furniture. An ABW workspace creates areas to maximise cooperation between workers and thus the overall productivity of the business. It is a flexible working environment.

In an ABW set-up you might have team desks, conference spaces, phone areas, quiet rooms, brainstorming areas, a lounge and working areas. There could be seated or standing work areas. Each design is unique to the business in question. And it is because the ABW design is so radically different to other officer layouts and designs which make it so popular.

So why has this new style of operation become so popular?

Productivity increases

Every business requires and desires better productivity. One of the primary benefits of an ABW setup is the boost it gives to productivity. Popularity of the new layout is guaranteed when productivity improves. It's a win-win situation for workers and the business.

Collaboration increases

Activity Based Workspaces often include collaboration zones.
Activity Based Workspaces often include collaboration zones.

Having your workers work better with one another is a huge benefit. Better communication, exchange of skills and new ideas eventuate. Collaboration is vital to the success of your operation. Positive and constant collaboration is the best of both worlds. Your workers collaborate far better in a specific work space using an ABW model.

You better understand your role

Just what is your role at work? Confusion as to your responsibility and your tasks makes for an underperforming worker. That makes them unhappy, unproductive and the consequence is that the business suffers as a result. If that lack of productivity spreads throughout the company, results will be poor even disastrous. With a clearly defined ABW setup, people know their role and are far better able to perform it and well.

You concentrate better

The work environment is so crucial to the ability of the workforce to concentrate; the better their concentration powers, the more productive the worker. If workers are 'locked' into their area with limits as to where they can go and with whom they can collaborate, the worker drifts in their thinking. It's easy to lose concentration. Having workers move freely within the space and mingle in a structured way gives them new energy and aids their ability to concentrate. No wonder an ABW setup is so popular.

You remove sedentary lifestyle at work

The mental and physical wellbeing of your workers is a key to the success of your business. Having people sitting for long periods in their own little world is not good for their health and not good for business. All the well-designed furniture in the world is not the total answer. People may often be happier and more productive standing than sitting. That's the beauty of an ABW approach. It is flexible and is designed to suit your specific needs. You can improve the health of your workforce by changing their environment. And let's face it; a healthy workforce is by far the better option.

Work becomes more enjoyable

A happy workforce is always welcomed by management. If your workers are keen to come to work and find being at work a fun or enjoyable and challenging experience, you are running a business which is far more likely to succeed than if your employees are decidedly unhappy. An ABW design is popular because it makes the workers happy.