Furnishing office space is expensive. To make it easier for employees to collaborate and work as teams without too many barriers, open office benching systems have grown in popularity.
If your employees need areas to interact with coworkers, configure your space into zones where they can relax, concentrate, collaborate, socialize and create. While benching systems may look like low-walled cubicles, they have no paneling that divides the working areas, which means you’ll be able to accommodate more people in a work space.
Benching works particularly well in offices where workers spend most of their time working in teams, e.g., marketing, engineering, IT project teams, research and development, product development, consultants, architects and designers.
If you would like to explore benching and other options, we encourage you to check out the online catalogs of companies like EthoSource in Morgantown, PA. The company specializes in high-quality new and used office furniture systems and can supply you with a wide range of design ideas, no matter whether you prefer benching, cubicles, or a hybrid.
Advantages of Benching Systems
- Benching encourages group interaction and teamwork, improving departmental communication.
- Benching accommodates more workers in the same amount of space, reducing real estate costs per square foot.
- Many benching systems are modular and can be easily relocated or reconfigured to meet the needs of the individual users.
- Hybrid solutions allow for power and data distribution along a center spine, and can support long horizontal worksurface spans.
- With lower (or no) partitions, natural light and views increase, which have been shown to dramatically improve productivity and mental alertness.
As today’s workers request more open space, moveable desks, standing desks, and other less formal styles of seating that can be rearranged quickly for sharing work, benching has helped create a new, improved version of offices once filled with high-walled cubicles.
They are an excellent solution when your business has outside salespeople, telecommuters and other transient workers who spend more time on the road than in the office. The bench provides them with a place to plug-in, work and collaborate with colleagues, but the space isn’t wasted when they’re not in the office.
Benching may not be the best choice if your employees need a lot of quiet and privacy in order to be productive. However, you can still create a functional and aesthetically beautiful state-of-the-art environment by combining benching systems and their cubicle counterparts.
To thwart complaints about too much noise, overheard phone conversations, no individuality, or no privacy, consider adding phone rooms for private calls, and provide small meeting rooms where they can concentrate on a project without interruptions.
A combination of low- or no-wall benches and higher-walled cubicles with acoustic or high-acoustic panels can absorb the sound. Make the panels tackable with materials like cork so your employees can pin their work to the walls, or install marker tiles or whiteboards to promote creativity.
Open office benching systems may result in happier employees and are a very effective way to maximize your use of space.