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A Facility Manager’s Guide to Planning and Managing Office Space During COVID-19

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By Amit Prasad on July 20, 2021

As people all over the world endeavor to adjust to the uncertainties of COVID-19, office space planning, control, and supervision have become a crucial part of effective business management. Here is a complete space management guide for facility managers to help them embrace the ‘new normal’ in light of the pandemic-induced challenges.

How COVID-19 Has Changed the Need and Management of Office Space

The onset of the pandemic compelled many companies to switch to remote work options that have now become the staple of the modern work culture. Prior to the pandemic, work from home was often a perk offered to attract and retain the best talent. But now, with more than 2/3rd of the companies worldwide planning to reopen their offices this summer, hybrid onsite and remote work may become routine, resulting in a need to re-think your existing space management strategies.

Why Space Management Matters?

Being a perfect facility manager is not an easy task in today’s competitive business world, where your company or organization is trying to achieve the maximum results with the optimal utilization of the available resources.

Whether it is office space planning or complete infrastructure control, a greater degree of accuracy is required at all levels for efficient space and workplace management. An advanced space management solution proves to be a perfect savior for facility managers that takes care of each aspect of space and facility management.

What Is Space Management?

Space management can be defined as a practice where an organization manages its physical space inventory by tracking, controlling, planning, and supervising the utilization of the available space.

Whether it is a business enterprise, retail chain, industrial factory, financial institution, educational hub, or even a government facility, every organization relies upon its physical space to support its core functions and ensure a smooth workflow. Even though they may implement different techniques and strategies to manage their workspace, the effectiveness of the same depends on the tools used for implementation. Expert facility managers always rely on an advanced space management software solution for managing their organization’s infrastructure space.

What Are the Essential Components of Space Management Planning?

The four crucial components of space management planning are:

  1. Insight Data

    The first component of space management is the availability of insight data about space management, planning, and utilization. It includes insights into space costs, usage, and other capital investments into space utilization.

  2. Real-time Records

    The second component focuses on the availability of real-time space data and records for quick move management and efficient tracking of space utilization in an organization.

  3. Space Utilization and Optimization

    This is one of the most crucial aspects of space management planning. Ensuring an efficient space utilization is only possible with a solid space optimization plan.

  4. Reducing Costs

    This is a basic need of any space management plan. Reducing capital investment on expanding space availability and focusing more on optimizing the current space inventory is the basic component of a space management plan.

What Are the Three Basic Elements of Space Management?

The three basic elements of efficient space management are:

  1. Strategic Planning

    It is a well-known fact that space and workflow management is an important part of your business planning and strategy, as both of these are closely interlinked. Business organizations need an efficient system to track their physical space inventory as a part of resource planning. Space management gives them an in-depth insight into when their existing facilities can support their workflow, and when they need to expand. Space management supports your business’ strategic future planning.

  2. Resource Optimization

    Any business organization’s workflow plan is incomplete without an effective resource optimization plan. Any available resource must be optimized for its best utilization to ensure that the organization gets the best output of its investments. This is a basic element of a space management plan. Any guide to facility management will focus on an efficient resource optimization plan.

  3. Workflow Automation

    Workflow automation is the need of the hour! Managing space and workplace is a tedious task, which further engages manual resources. A well-planned space and workplace management strategy will automate various day-to-day processes, which require time and resource engagement. A space management solution will help you automate your space and workplace management practices.

Planning and Managing Your Office Space During COVID-19

  • Assess your needs

    With the emergence of hybrid workplace culture, you need to assess your spacing needs in light of the COVID-19 guidelines to ensure employee protection and a safe work environment.

  • Create a strategic plan

    Once you have assessed your needs, create a strategic plan to make the most of your available resources, thus saving on costs. You can use desk booking software and similar software solutions to ensure a flexible, easily reconfigurable, and safe working space.

  • Manage your existing space

    Regardless of the size of your enterprise, your financial resources will always be limited. Instead of having a specific seat assigned to each employee, invest in seat-booking systems that allow your employees to reserve their seats in advance. This way, you will have the right mix of spaces, avoiding unnecessary maintenance costs for unused spaces.

What Is the Purpose of Facility Management?

The primary purpose of facility management is to ensure an efficient work environment by integrating people, objects, processes, and technologies for maximum results. The word ‘facility’ encompasses the physical working space and everything around it, including people, objects, and resources. It is the facility manager’s responsibility to ensure strategic office space planning and optimum utilization for the smooth functioning of the business organization.

Choosing the Right Space Management Solution

As a facility manager, you need to choose the right space management solution for your organization. At QuickFMS, we offer advanced facility management software that allows you to manage your organization’s physical space inventory with ease. Our cloud-based software can be integrated with any ERP, HR, or CRM system, allowing you to track space utilization in real-time, thereby empowering you to take quick space movement and allocation decisions. For more information, schedule a free, personalized demo with us today!

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