Space planning helps create effective and comfortable work and visitor spaces, while making the best use of valuable university space.
Workspaces can be at normal density, but units should try different space planning and collaboration options as employees and managers work together with flexible work arrangements and hybrid models.
Space Planning Guide Contents
- Consider needs of a hybrid-remote workforce
- Evaluate your on-site space needs & set specific schedules as needed
- Establish ergonomic shared workstations and hoteling space(s)
- Update meeting rooms for both on-site and off-site attendees (display screens/monitors, mics, cameras, etc.)
- Consider the space release incentive program
On-site Space Planning Considerations
1. Consider needs of a hybrid-remote workforce
Some employees will be uncomfortable with the on-site workplace and some of that discomfort may arise from concerns about illness exposure and sanitization.
Some recommendations on this front:
- Advise employees to speak up if they have concerns about quantities of people in a space, distances, sanitization or any other potential safety concerns in the physical environment.
- Update meeting rooms for on- and off-site attendees (display screens / monitors, mics, cameras, etc.)
2. Evaluate on-site space needs (e.g., staffing and meetings) & establish schedules
When a remote employee works on-site, a workspace (potentially shared and/or non-dedicated) will be made available to them. Schools, colleges and divisions should establish/update policies that ensure consistent provisioning of space and resources.
- Evaluate your on-site space needs and establish specific schedules as needed.
Specific parameters will vary by school, college and division - check with your supervisor or Flexible Work Liaison for your unit's guidelines.
UC Davis recommends:
- Employees on-site more than 60% of time: assign a workstation or office, a ratio of 1 employee to 1 workstation/office (1:1)
- Employees on-site 20% to 60%: provide a shared workstation, with a ratio of 1 workstation for every 2 employees (1:2)
- Employees on-site less than 20% of time: provide drop-in “hoteling” space, with a ratio of 1 workstation for every 10 employees (1:10)
- Document the number of people you plan to have fully on-site, fully remote or in a hybrid-remote arrangement.
- Establish core hours of coverage and specific schedules for on-site time wherever possible, in order to:
Ensure coverage of core services and on-site needs/responsibilities/goals
Optimize employee time on-site for tasks best done in-person such as collaboration, connection, face-to-face service. Make sure the reason for on-site is reasonable, clear and communicated (creative brainstorming, customer assistance, campus climate and connection, technology/tools/supplies and equipment). In today's work environment it is paramount to avoid having an on-site requirement that seems arbitrary and not task/need/reason based.
Ensure any remote/hybrid-remote staff who work on-site can access an ergonomic workspace that aids productivity
Departmental storage ideas
Can items be digitized in order to provide access for both on-site and hybrid or remote staff? Are there legal or policy requirements to keep hard copy files?
Do shared equipment or supplies need to be stored in a different way?
3. Design Shared Workspaces
You may need to establish shared workspaces and hoteling spaces, and both should have docking stations, monitors, keyboards, mice, power cords and cleaning supplies.
- Shared Workstation: Workspace that is assigned to 2 or 3 specific staff, with a schedule for usage.
- Hoteling Space: Workspace that is available to any remote staff, with means to reserve space as needed.
- Key Recommendations
- Designate storage for employees
- Provide necessary and ergonomic equipment
- Establish sharing / scheduling etiquette and system (e.g., Outlook) to reserve space
- Ergonomics: employee workstations and equipment must meet ergonomic standards
4. Update meeting rooms and meeting protocols
The nature of flex work means that teams may have some remote participants. Review which meetings will take place in conference and meeting rooms, which will take place via teleconferencing, and which will be a blend of both. Best practice is to avoid this blending, so aim to have either all in-person, or all-online.
- Ensure your conference/meeting room(s) can accommodate meetings with both remote and on-site participants, if needed
- Work with your unit’s IT representative to figure out the equipment needed for conference rooms (e.g., hardware, connections, cameras, monitors, microphones)
- Meeting Protocols
- Moderator should review any on-site health and safety regulations, if any
- Clarify options for attending the meeting
- Consider off-site employees' needs and whether they can fully participate in the meeting
5. Space Planning Incentives
Campus teams who permanently release 2,500 assignable square feet (ASF) or more will earn $10 per ASF for up to three years. This means a budget credit of $25,000 or more per year for three years, which could be used at the discretion of a dean or vice chancellor. Additionally, up to 60% of standard per-person moving costs covered centrally
- Consider the space release incentive program