Designing operations of the workplace smartly by
- planning who does what at the workplace and how
reducing overlapping work, meaning same work done by several employees
- improving flow of information within the workplace
- ensuring that personal, team, and organizational level goals are clearly set and communicated
- advancing leadership considering which matters each employee should focus on so that they canreach their best possible performance
Favouring a fast-forward (clockwise) rotating shift pattern, in which there are
only 1−3 consecutive night shifts, and avoiding short (< 11 hours) shift intervals,
such as a morning shift following an evening shift, promotes recovery between
work shifts and good work-flow among shift workers.
Involving employees in designing their working environments (digital, social, and
physical) and the rules that apply in them.
When creating a functional environment for activity-based working*, careful design process in which employees are involved is essential. The designing process
should be founded on the goals and operations of the organization, and the demands and behaviours of the employees. Types of working areas could be: open
work space, assigned workstations for employees that need permanent, personally adjusted workstations, unassigned workstations for employees that do not
need fixed workstations, soundproof phone booths, silent areas for concentration,
areas for group work, official meeting rooms, and areas for unofficial collaboration and socializing.
Compiling the rules on how to use the various areas of an activity-based working environment* together with the employees. Monitoring the feasibility of the rules and how well they are followed, and adjusting them when needed. Informing all employees about the rules via multiple channels, such as face-to-face, via email, and by setting the rules visible in an easily noticeable place in the working envi-ronment. Different types of working areas can be indicated with colours and/or with signs so that everyone knows how to use and behave in a particular area.
Providing employees the possibility for
- flexible working hours
- remote work
- adapting work schedules, for example by working 9-hour days Monday through Friday and only 4 hours on Friday
- adjusting personal workload to meet physical and mental resources
- reduced working hours when life situation requires it
Saving time and increasing productivity by arranging meetings only when necessary, by setting clear objectives for each meeting, and by inviting only employees that need to be involved
An ergonomics professional together with immediate superiors visit each employees' personal workstations with certain intervals to check that employees have
appropriate tools and sufficient knowhow for working ergonomically, and that
their workload and work tasks fit their work ability. Possible problems are solved
with tailored solutions. Superiors are recommended to be involved in these checkups so that they become aware of how each employee works, and develop skills to
plan work tasks smartly.
Promoting job mobility by rotating work tasks, or by providing employees an opportunity to gain work experience in another job for a period of 3–6 months with
the possibility to return to old job.
*In activity-based working no employee ‘owns’ or has an assigned workstation. Rather, the workspace provides employees with a variety of activity areas designated to specific work tasks, such as learning, focusing, collaborating, formal meetings, and socialising. The aim is to give the personnel an opportunity to choose a place in the workspace where it is most suitable for them to complete their work tasks.