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Flexible workspaces

Work takes eight to 10 hours of our day. The workplace therefore can positively or negatively impact our wellbeing. Today as wellness has become a crucial factor in selecting jobs, companies need to pay attention to the desire for enhanced and innovative workspaces.

Let me share with you our experience in innovative workspaces at Ancilla, a training and consulting company. I remember in the year 1995, we occupied almost half of a floor in a building in Makati. Every person in the company had a cubicle.

We noticed then that half of the time, the space allocated for consultants was empty. When our lease expired, we decided to get smaller offices in another building still in Makati, giving us substantial savings from rentals. We found a comfortable room in an office condominium where we set up a training room after our own heart. 

Our workshops started to gather steam; we averaged 20-25 people per run. We rejoiced because we were optimizing the capacity of the facility. Then, the neighbouring offices started to complain about the additional traffic on our floor and that our participants were causing lines in the use of the toilets. We had to move out.

We opted to invest by buying pre-selling office properties at Filinvest City in Alabang as we realized that 23 of our 25 employees lived in the South. Moving our offices in the South meant shorter travel time and greater convenience for most of our employees. 

We also needed training venues for our public seminars that we can convert to meeting places for consultants and staff. Today we have a training room cum meeting room cum overtime room inside the SOHO (small office, home office) part at one of the hotels in Alabang, Muntinpula City. Since most of our clients come from Makati and Ortigas, we also decided to buy space in a condominium in Makati for the same purposes as our Alabang training room property. Today, we are meeting all our objectives. Staff and consultants have rooms and offices that fulfil their unique needs at reasonable expense to the company.

I liken our current arrangements to a comfortable house with a sala for meeting visitors. There, our training and/or consultant meeting rooms can accommodate 15 people at any given time. There are the regular staff offices which can be used for rest and relaxation. The informal spaces in our training rooms can also be the venues for spiritual meetings or used as exercise rooms, or even as napping quarters, when not in official use.

As a company, we desire to continuously work to improve our workplaces. Can we have a spacious workplace so one can move freely? Can we eliminate wires and clutter from desks and develop a neat look?  Can we bring in plants or colors to brighten up our spaces? Yes we can. By reinventing our workspaces, we are making these flexible for the wellness of our employees and clients. 

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