When designing office space, one of the decisions interior designers and facilities engineers have to make is choosing between an open floor office and a cubicle workplace. While the open floor layout continues to become a trend in office interior design, eliminating walls and boundaries and fostering collaboration among employees, many businesses still choose to keep using the traditional cubicle layout.
Below are some of the reasons why cubicle workstations are still used in many companies.
Cubicle workstations make use of office furniture such as partitions or dividers, offering privacy especially when the employee is working on confidential information such as employees’ salaries and payroll processing. Cubicle walls serve as barrier, preventing other employees from seeing the computer screen or documents on the desk when they walk by the person’s cubicle.
Cubicle workspaces also provide a quieter work environment, allowing employees to make phone calls without disturbing other employees while they work. Because cubicles reduce noise and distraction, employees can focus on their tasks better, which may lead to increased productivity.
At some point during the day, employees may feel stressed out or frustrated. Cubicle workstations will allow employees to vent their feelings and recollect themselves without displaying their emotions to everyone on the floor.
Open offices are known for fostering teamwork and collaboration. However, since open space layouts make it easy for employees to talk without leaving their desks, it also allows the chance for idle chats. On the other hand, cubicle workstations are found to encourage shorter and more purposeful communication.
When conversations need to be kept private, cubicle workstations allow communicating parties to be more open about discussing what they really think or feel, without worry that what they say can be overheard by other employees.
Cubicles provide employees with a sense of ownership, allowing them to decorate their work areas according to their preference. Because employees can put their personal spin on their workspaces, they can transform it into an environment where they feel more comfortable while working.
Compared to a private office, cubicles are more accessible and smaller in size. Employees tend to feel more responsible for keeping their desks clutter-free and organized because of the small space they have to work on. They also grow more conscious about leaving personal items or confidential documents on their desks, which also helps in encouraging them to minimize clutter. When employees work on a cleaner, more organized space, they can concentrate more, finish tasks faster, and be more productive.
Cubicle workstations, because they have no walls or doors, are less expensive to install and maintain compared to private offices. Cubicles also take up less space, allowing businesses to add more workstations when the need to recruit more employees arise because of an expansion or acquisition.
While cubicle workstations may not be applicable to all businesses, they still provide many benefits. They offer a semi-private and customizable space that contributes to greater efficiency and more effective communication.