The Challenges of Creating a Collaborative Workspace
While an open and collaborative workspace can help increase collaboration and communication, it can pose a negative impact on individual work and work that requires focus. Individual work still accounts for a large portion of a workday.
While an open and collaborative workspace can help increase collaboration and communication, it can pose a negative impact on individual work and work that requires focus. Individual work still accounts for a large portion of a workday. Here are some of the challenges it can impose on the workplace:
The noise level can be more vulnerable in collaborative open-plan spaces. Group meetings, co-workers talking nearby and phones ringing, it can become a great distraction and decrease concentration and productivity levels. According to a study by Kim and de Dear at the University of Sydney, 25% of employees are in partition-less offices were not satisfied with the noise levels at work.
More Time Consuming
While working as a team, there will be different opinions and working styles. This may slow down the progress of tasks and additional time may be spent on resolving conflicts and by the different working approaches. More time is also consumed on decision making when more people are consulted and involved.
To support collaborative efforts, there will be an increased investment through system resources and technology such as conferencing, coordination and collaborative software. There will also be higher costs in training and travel for relationship building. The total cost of ownership (TCO) on subscription costs are easily left unattended. According to a survey conducted by Lifesize and Spiceworks, 56% of IT professionals didn’t know what they were spending on for subscriptions and licenses for collaboration solutions.
Although there are challenges with working in a collaborative environment, there are methods to combat the negative impacts. To reduce noise levels, create private working spaces using partitions and select acoustic furniture. The ultimate goal is to create a balance between a collaborative space and an independent space.