Flexible Workspace

Flexible Workspace

How to create a flexible workspace that employees will thrive in

Just a few years ago, it was rare to see companies adopting hybrid work schedules. Daily commutes and in-office meetings were an expected part of the workday. Times certainly have changed!

These days, more companies are offering hybrid schedules with a combination of in-person and remote work. Rather than taking a “one size fits all” approach, they're experimenting with flexible workspaces that allow employees to build a schedule that works with their unique needs. This model can go a long way in keeping employees happy while also demonstrating that you value their autonomy.

Flexible schedules require flexible workspaces. We’ve rounded up 10 flexible office space ideas, practical products, and inspirational tips that will make any office a place team members can thrive in — whether they work a hybrid schedule, visit from remote locations, or work in the office every day.

First, what is a flexible workspace?

A flexible office space is just what it sounds like. It allows employees to take more ownership over where they work and, sometimes, when they work. This can look like offering a hybrid schedule with some days in the office and other days working from a home office. It can also look like giving employees the option to choose where they work in an office, whether that’s at a desk, a communal table, or a couch.

Ergotron WorkFit-T/TL Standing Desk Converter

What are the benefits of flexible workspaces?

Flexible workspaces are becoming more popular because they’re shown to improve employees’ productivity, happiness, and overall work satisfaction.

Here’s a deeper look at some of the benefits of flexible work spaces.

●    Builds Trust With Your Team

By showing you acknowledge your team’s ability to work in different environments, you’ll build trust with your employees. This will in turn help your team feel more satisfied, seen, and heard.

●   Helps Retain and Recruit Top Talent

You’ll be more likely to recruit and retain top talent by giving them space to juggle other aspects of their life with their career. Rather than sticking to a rigid schedule, flexible workspaces give employees options to do their job in a way that’s effective for them.


●    Gives Employees a Place to Focus Solely on Work

While home offices serve an important purpose, a flexible office workspace also gives employees a place to focus on their work outside of the home. At home, there are dishes to wash, kids to care for, and pets to play with — distractions in every corner! Offering employees a dedicated office is a way to help your team build connections, stay focused, and brainstorm new ideas together.

●    Fosters a Healthier, Happier, and More Productive Workspace  

Most employees want a balanced life, which is easier with flex workspaces. Ultimately, when employees feel good, they’re healthier and more productive at their job — and everyone wins.


10 flexible workspace ideas for your office

There are so many ways to make your workspace ideal for employees who transition from their home to the office. Keep in mind that the key to a flexible and intentional environment is not just what you put in the space, but how you design it.

1.   Blend Individual and Shared Workspaces

For teams that prioritize flexible work schedules, you’ll likely have a fluctuation of employees in the office each day. Some days, you may have a full house; other days there may just be a few employees.

One way to create a comfortable and flexible workspace that accommodates both is to feature a combination of private and shared workspaces. So, rather than having only a collection of cubicles, we suggest integrating a large desk or table where multiple employees can work, along with individual workspaces.

A large desk and communal workplace “hub” will not only maximize space, but it will also create an inclusive environment, whether it's a conference, a staff meeting, brainstorming sessions, or just another work day.

Plus, communal spots in your office will encourage conversation between employees — a huge benefit of in-person office time. Studies show that colleagues who are friends perform better at work and are more likely to stay at their job for longer.

Tip: If you’re not ready to commit to a large desk, consider putting smaller desks together to achieve the same communal effect.

2.   Carve Out Private Areas

If you have teammates who will be working from home regularly, there’s a good chance you’ll have employees on various virtual-hybrid meetings throughout the day. Private areas will allow team members to take calls without distracting coworkers, and the calls will feel more focused.  

Private areas, such as separate rooms or distinct nooks, will also give employees space to meet for one-on-one meetings, small conferences, or deep-focus work.

Tip: Don’t have enough space for separate rooms? Use dividers and bookcases to create a feeling of separation.

3.   Set the Mood With Good Lighting

Studies show that the right lighting is associated with a boost in mood and productivity. One of the best ways to create a room that feels bright — but not too bright — is to layer your lighting. Use a combination of overhead lighting and task lighting in addition to any natural light your space offers.

Depending on the size of your space, you’ll want to invest in a few pieces of statement lighting, such as ceiling lights and larger floor lamps, like our Lana Floor Light and Echo Floor Lamp. Then, be sure to add task lighting with table lights, lamps, and lanterns. These smaller lights have a huge impact on both aesthetics and workflow.

Tip: Invest in LED lights to avoid harsh lighting. We also recommend adding mirrors that will reflect the light, which helps illuminate the space.

4.   Get Input From Your Team

Ask questions to find out what your team needs (and actually enjoys). When it comes to employees with different schedules, it’s wise to note practical information, like how much storage is necessary and what tech accessories they’ll require. You can also get a pulse on any stylistic preferences and ideas that you can use as inspiration.

Tip: Send out a survey with questions, so your team feels safe to share their thoughts.

5.   Add Pops of Personality

Yes, the office is a place to get things done efficiently and effectively. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be an inviting and joyful space to be in. Artwork, colorful office chairs, books, unique lighting, and plants will help bring personality to the office.

Tip: Consider how you can make these details a reflection of your company too. Perhaps decorate with books that align with your company mission or add photos from team events.

6.   Offer Plenty of Ergonomic Seating

Few things make someone feel more unproductive than not having a comfortable chair. Be sure to have a variety of ergonomic options, such as office chairs, stools, benches, and lounge seating.

Ergonomic chairs reduce distractions, enable concentration, and maximize efficiency, comfort, and creativity. They’re also professionally designed to offer lumbar and pelvic support, along with customizable features to make the chair feel as if it was made just for you.

Tip: Take a look at our collection of science-backed ergonomic chairs and performance seating, including our best-selling Fern Office Chair.  

7.   Add Standing Desks and Converters

Standing desks can transform your employees’ work experience. From improving posture to boosting moods, standing desks offer so many benefits that combat the risks and discomfort of sitting all day. For example, sitting for many hours at a time is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, and mental health issues.

By adding standing desks in your office, you’ll be showing your team that you prioritize their mental and physical wellness while also helping to improve their productivity.

Check out our collection of high-quality standing desks, including our Upside Sit-to-Stand Desk (Extended Range), our Upside Sit-to-Stand Desk (Standard Range), and our Ergotron LearnFit Sit-to-Stand Desk.

Tip: If you’d rather make the most of your current desk situation without buying new standing desks, take a look at our standing desk converters that offer the same benefits as sit-to-stand desks.

8.   Keep Chargers Handy and Clutter-Free

The list of things to be charged daily is long: smartphones, computers, tablets, headphones, and more. All of those cords can get out of control easily.

Luckily, there are plenty of options for functional and aesthetic charging solutions. For example, our multi-device wireless chargers, magnetic chargers, and wireless charger trays offer sleek options that keep your devices charged without looking cluttered.  

Even so, wires are pretty much inevitable in any office, so use a wire management basket and clips to streamline the cords you can't hide.

Tip: Keep extra chargers in a designated drawer in your office, so team members know where to go when they need to power up.  

9.   Make Organization Easy

Set up zones and give everything a dedicated space to ensure employees are on the same page about organization, whether they’re in the office once a month or every day.

Keep papers corralled in document trays, pencils in pencil cups, and books on side tables. Items should be easy to locate so that when something needs restocking, it's easy to reset and refill.

Tip: For an organization system that will last, avoid having too much stuff in the first place. Find out exactly what your team needs — that way, your office space will have all the essentials without any of the clutter.

10. Have Fun With It

Surround yourself with items that spark creativity and joy. This will ultimately help your team focus and will make your office a place they genuinely enjoy being in.

Tip: Take some inspiration from our Haworth showrooms, located across the world.

More practical tips for a flexible workspace

Beyond the design of your space, here are more tips to make your office seamless for all employees, no matter how many days of the week they work together in person.

●    Use Password Managers

Make everyone's life easier with a password manager that’ll keep track of log-ins. That way, team members won’t deal with frustrating situations where they can’t work because their list of passwords is at home.

●    Stock Up on Non-Perishable Snacks

You’ll give employees a boost of energy if they forget to bring along something to eat from home.

●   Provide Nice-to-Have Amenities

As the saying goes, a little goes a long way. Take your office up a notch by adding amenities in the bathroom (premium hand soap, mouthwash, lotion, etc.). You could also offer free coffee and branded notebooks to make your office feel like more than just a place to work.

Bring your dream flexible office space to life

Your workspace should suit your company's vision while accommodating your team members in a way that makes them feel appreciated and supported. With intentional design, comfortable ergonomic furniture, and a welcoming office environment, you’re well on your way to creating an office space that sets up your team for success for years to come.


Some things are too good to keep to yourself.