Think an open office layout is perfect for your business organization? You may need to rethink that idea.

In recent years, due largely to the increased prominence of tech companies and start-ups, open office layouts have increased in popularity among small- and medium-scale enterprises. According to some experts, an open office layout can foster creativity, productivity and open communication in the workplace. And what business organization would not want to reap such benefits?

However, a study conducted by researchers from the University of Queensland in 2013 encourages business owners to think twice about opting for open floor designs in their offices. According to the study, 15 percent of respondents got into arguments with co-workers, 12 percent felt frustration at work, 8 percent reported job dissatisfaction, and 11 percent said that the quality of their work can be further improved.

Business People having a meetingBut why should business owners pay extra attention to office design and layout? You and your workers spend a third, or even more, of your waking lives at the workplace. Optimal office design can boost productivity and, further down the line, increase profit. The right work environment can also improve your reputation among clients and even allow you to lure and retain top talent.

While there is no one office layout that promises the optimal performance of an organization’s staff, you can design your workplace to suit your business’s needs. In order to do this, you need to be aware of the different types of work performed by your personnel. This may include tasks that require focus, collaboration, networking and learning. Talking to your staff members also helps you determine which layouts work and which do not.

But what can you do if you find that your current open layout does not fit your organization’s working style?

Here at Commercial Systems, operable partitions are some of our more notable specialty products. Also known as acoustic walls, operable walls are versatile solutions used in hotels, convention centers, meeting rooms and educational facilities.

In the workplace, they can be used to optimize office space, allowing you and your staff members to seamlessly transition from an open office layout to a more structured office layout and back again.

For tasks that require focus and learning, you can use these partitions to segment a portion of the office and provide workers some seclusion from the rest of your staff. Once done, you can revert back to an open layout. The great thing about this is that you do not have to make a sizeable investment on your part, and the installation of these features require only minimal disturbance on your and your staff’s end.