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5 ways to create the perfect agile working experience

Agile working is a highly effective framework for product teams and is one of the most popular ways of working. Despite its roots in the tech world, agile (small “a”) ways of working can be found in a wide range of industries across the globe. Agile methodologies excel when a team works as a cohesive unit. And to encourage true cohesion, businesses need to offer teams a suitable environment to help them thrive. For agile teams to work well, they need to work in an agile environment.

An agile workplace is a work environment designed around complete flexibility. That includes flexibility in working locations, hours, processes, physical spaces, and more. Let’s look at how companies can create an agile working experience for their teams.

5 ideas to create the perfect agile working experience

An agile work experience focuses entirely on creating flexible systems for employees. The idea is to create more flexible workspaces, policies, and company culture. Here’s how to do it.

Build flexible policies

Introducing a flexible work policy can help workers to embrace flexibility by offering flexible rules surrounding how, where, and when they work. This will mean that when it comes time to communicate and collaborate, they can do so anywhere they are.

Every business will have a different idea of what their flexible workplace policies will look like, and that’s a good thing. Flexible policies should be just that, flexible. This could include exploring hybrid work models, taking a more hospitality-focused approach to employee experience, or any number of other things. The most important thing is to encourage employees to find new ways of working that promote collaboration and productivity.

Build a culture of agility

For teams to work agile, they need to feel comfortable when attempting something a little out of the ordinary. Businesses need to make sure they’re actively seeking diverse perspectives and voices to ensure the workplace is somewhere everyone feels safe. 

Shifting an entire company’s culture is a tricky job, and it doesn’t just happen overnight. There needs to be an active and dedicated effort to bring the benefits of an agile work experience to everyone in the office.

One of the best ways to help introduce a culture of agility is to talk to your workers. Find out what an agile workplace means to them and create a personal connection to the transformation.

Make it clear that during a transition to a more agile experience, mistakes will be made — and that’s okay. Building a culture of trust and creating psychological safety for your employees is key to agile working.  

Keep spaces flexible

The traditional office policy of “here’s your desk, you’ll sit here all day” is over. Much like we celebrated the move away from cubicles and desk partitions, workers in hybrid offices prefer a much more open workspace that can cope with whatever the job throws at them.

We often see policies like hot desking or desk hoteling used in agile work environments. These are great starting points because they allow workers to choose the best place to work depending on their mood, workload, and activities. This helps to create a sense of empowerment and autonomy amongst the workers, as they can focus on getting the job done. 

To ensure everyone has a space to work their way, it’s a good idea to create your office in a way that offers different spaces for different work styles. Think about the different workplace personas. Each persona has a different preferred workspace type, and it’s important to cater for everyone’s needs.   

Implement activity-based working

Activity-based working (ABW) is a work style that empowers workers with choice. Much like desk hoteling, it allows someone to sit at a workspace that facilitates the activities they need to perform that day.

Unlike desk hoteling, activity-based working gives a purpose to different areas of the office. Think of it like splitting teams into different departments. Each department has a different and specific function. The difference here is that ABW is far less rigid. Workers aren’t forced into a specific area of the office and, in some cases, aren’t even forced to stay in the office at all. 

Activity-based working supports employees by viewing work as a fluid activity that can change regularly. This helps keep things fresh and promotes different ways of thinking and working.

Give employees the tools they need to stay agile

Of course, you can’t create an agile work environment if your workers struggle to get to grips with the new processes. You need to make everything as simple as possible for everyone. Otherwise, you’ll get pushback from disgruntled workers who thought everything was “working just fine” before.

This is why technology is so important, from communication software like Slack or Microsoft Teams to apps that guide you to your desk. Most project management platforms offer cloud-based software to allow workers to access their work anywhere in the world.

A workplace scheduling solution is one of the most important tools you’ll need for an agile working environment. Workers need to easily and quickly see available space in the office before they get there. This will save a lot of time, letting them head into the office and get straight to work instead of figuring out where they’ll sit that day.

Workplace scheduling software like this also helps workplace experience managers better manage their office space. They can see real-time analytics that allow them to identify low-traffic areas so they can be repurposed to create an optimized workspace that’s truly agile. 

Smartway2 has the tools you need for agile working

Ready to get started on your journey to an agile workplace? Get in touch with us to try a demo of Smartway2, our powerful workplace scheduling solution that can help you create truly agile workplaces.


Hannah Cresswell

Last updated September 23, 2022