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Shared Workstations

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Have you considered using shared workstations in your office to save money?  Going with an open office layout has its advantages and disadvantages.  Here are a few things to think about when deciding if a shared workstation is the right choice for your office.

 

A shared workstation can better utilize the space in an office by having desks condensed into mini enclosures instead of spread about the office’s main floor.

 

A shared workstation works best in a small office where frequent verbal communication is a key factor in getting the job done efficiently.  Instead of employees taking the time to e-mail, make a phone call, or walk to a co-workers desk, they can simply spin around in their chairs or lean over their monitors to ask the question that needs answering.  A shared workstation set up can help to further the sense of friendliness and camaraderie among employees.

 

A few downsides to shared workstations are the possibility of unnecessary conversation and interaction, which of course can become a big factor in jobs not getting done in a timely manner.  It also offers employees very little privacy from one another.  For example, if an employee gets a phone call from her child’s teacher, everyone else in the area is going to know said employee’s personal business.

 

One of the biggest things to consider about a shared workstation is the noise factor.  Will all of the business related conversing among employees in a bull pen upset other nearby employees’ abilities to focus and work?  If you decide to go with shared workstations, it may be a good idea to consider providing your employees a separate room shared by all where they can make personal phone calls, in-depth client phone calls, or simply duck into to get some work done in peace.

 

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If you are really cramped for space and have different shifts for your employees, you may want to consider a shared cubicle option.  In this setup, one employee would utilize a desk on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and other would use the same desk on Tuesday and Thursday.  This setup would also work for a morning shift and evening shift.

 

The shared cubicle is a space saver and it allows employers to cut down on office product expenses.  Each cubicle can have one stapler, one phone, one computer to be used by two employees.

 

The biggest downside to a shared cubicle is privacy issues.  The first employee may have work done and saved that shouldn’t be seen by the second employee, and vice versa.  There are also personal belongings and valuables to consider.  If anything comes up missing, naturally the blame will fall on the other person in the workstation.  This can create a bit of a headache for a manager.

 

If you decide to go with the shared cubicle, consider giving the employees sharing the workspace and it’s computer separate passwords into your business’ main system.  Doing so will allow both employees to protect the privacy and content of their work.