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A Fundamental Guide To Building A Functional Layout Plan

A functional working environment that is both flexible and comfortable for your clients, visitors, and employees alike is vital to a successful business. And while building a functional office layout plan might sound overwhelming, its concept has changed the game.

In this article, we will explore all that you need to know about building a functional layout plan for your office design.

What is a functional office design?

Functional spaces are built based on total flexibility. Unlike traditional office floor plans where every employee is given their own workstation, functional spaces allow everybody to choose and work in a space that best suits their working need, assisting them in being productive and completing their work efficiently.

The advantage of building a functional layout plan

Every organisation has unique working needs and personalised working culture. Hence, before adopting a functional layout plan in your office renovation design, it is vital to understand how making such a design decision will benefit your organisation.

●Improved collaboration

●Increased employee retention

●Raised employee satisfaction

●Increased motivation and productivity levels

●Maximised and optimised space

Types of spaces in a functional layout plan

To fully adopt the concept of a functional layout plan, it is vital when planning office space to include several collaborative spaces that your employees can move between freely depending on their tasks at hand or their individual preferences.

Here are some examples of collaborative spaces that you can consider:

Meeting rooms: Areas reserved for private and confidential discussions, meetings, or hybrid conferences. You can use movable glass partitions rather than fixed walls to open and close up the space when necessary.

Quiet zones: Areas where employees are able to disconnect from any noise and distractions in the office to focus on vital tasks.

Touchdown spaces: Informal areas where employees are able to quickly connect their laptops to attend a quick online meeting or reply to an email.

Resource rooms: Areas where employees can access key office equipment, such as printers and scanners, without disturbing the rest of the office with the associated noise.

Break rooms: Areas with comfortable and soft seating where employees can relax, have their meals, or even hold informal meetings with one another. You may also include things such as gaming consoles, foosball tables, pool tables, or even table tennis tables to encourage your employees to bond together and stay active at the same time.

Key principles involving a functional layout plan

There are no hard and fast rules when building a functional layout plan. However, certain key principles can help you get a better idea of how you can go about it.

1. Inter-department relationship

The degree of relationship between departments must be taken into account when allocating spaces. For example, if Department A works closely with Department B, the allocated area to the two departments must be close to one another. A functional layout plan is one that takes into accord what each department deals with and how they work with one another, encouraging better workflow.

2. Maximum utilisation of floor space

Office space is expensive, especially in a densely populated country like Singapore. Hence, maximising and optimising the use of available floor space is vital. However, it is more than just squeezing in as many things as possible. You still want to prioritise sufficient space for employee well-being and efficiency.

For example, using mobile pods that can accommodate up to four staffs easily can help reduce the need for meeting rooms, saving significant spaces. Additionally, using operable walls can increase flexibility should you still require meeting rooms for your office. Lastly, pantry areas can also be used as hot-desking and dining areas during lunch breaks.

3. Space for employees and equipment

Office congestion is a factor resulting in reduced office efficiency. Ensuring that there is adequate space provided between work desks allows for free movement. Other aspects of the planning of layout include having a designated space where office equipment, stationeries, and files are kept together and conveniently so that it is easy to access, clean, and service when necessary.

4. Expansion

A business will always plan to grow in size. Whether it is increasing the number of additional office equipment to cope with increased workforce or plans to change the office layout, a functional layout plan must take into consideration expansion plans.


Moving towards building a functional layout plan involves more than just a physical transformation of the office space. It also requires a total shift in organisational thinking and complete support from an organisation that is ready to accept those changes.

With that being said, if you and your company are ready to upgrade your commercial office designs, then do not hesitate to contact OSCA. As one of the leading commercial interior design firms in Singapore, our award-winning design solutions ensure that your office space interior design is not only functional but also reflects your company’s values and culture to your employees, clients, and visitors. Visit us to find out more about us today!

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