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How companies can select an ideal office size in the age of hybrid working

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As more people return to offices, firms are keen to ensure they develop and retain a positive culture that promotes wellbeing and collaboration.

But the nature of work has changed as a result of the pandemic, with employers and employees focusing on making the most of time spent in the office.

Fewer organisations now expect or want people to be sitting at their desks from 9am to 5pm, with office space now seen as somewhere for people to come together.

This trend impacts decisions around what is the ideal office size for companies and what they want to do with that space.

Arena Business Centres provides private and customised offices which it says offer clients “a new way of working to thrive”.

Arena was founded in 2003 and therefore has years of experience of finding the most suitable office space for clients which range from SMEs to corporate.

It has 11 locations, including, to name just a few, Farnborough, Southampton, Poole and Reading. Its philosophy is to “provide space for businesses to perform and succeed”.

Find out more about Arena Business Centres >>

Key to this is ensuring that companies have an office that ideally fits their needs, and size is key to this.


Helen Deverill, marketing director at Arena Business Centres, has in-depth knowledge of what businesses should look for when choosing a space – and it’s not a one-size-fits-all. She says: “People work in different ways and it’s important that you take the space you need at that time. The space needs to fit around how you work, and how the team works.

Created for post-lockdown working, Arena Reading is a brand new, state of the art centre in the heart of Winnersh Triangle.

“We are generous with our office sizes because we take into account the wellbeing of the team, their productivity and providing space to collaborate. When people are looking for office space, they should bear those factors in mind.”

Ms Deverill has seen the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on what type and size of office organisations and individuals are looking for. “People are working in different ways. They don’t want to be sitting at a desk within the same four walls all day,” she explains. “We therefore encourage clients to move around. That’s why we really focus on creating beautiful collaboration areas so that you can work in different ways.

“We have sofas similar to those you might at home, so you can grab a coffee and sit there. We provide benches where you can move away from your desk, spread out and have your lunch. If you have individual calls to make, we have pods for privacy.

“Our approach encourages different ways of working. It also helps businesses encourage people to come into the office. Because people have been at home for a long time, many want to be at work for the social aspect as much as for the necessity. They want to collaborate again and have those lightbulb moments.”

Customisable, flexible office space in Southampton putting businesses first
Meeting room

In terms of desk density, Arena typically provides 43 square feet per person because it believes this is the right level of space for optimum productivity and wellness. Arena also places great importance on interior design as a way to enhance the workspace experience.

In addition, Arena is investing in meeting rooms and state-of-the-art technologies to allow for the likes of Zoom and Teams calls, partly in response to client demand.

Ms Deverill concludes: “Now, more than ever, the focus for clients is on employee retention to retain the best people. Creating a highly motivating environment will help by ensuring togetherness and inclusion.”

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