Activity Based Working

As an employer, you are facing increasing pressure to attract and retain talent in an increasingly competitive and global job market. Amidst this hustle, it may be hard to take a step back to reevaluate how you manage your team and workplace. That’s where activity-based working (ABW) comes in.

What is ABW?

ABW is a management model that recognizes that all employees are different and provides different ways to manage and interact with each individual. It’s a management style that shifts employees away from traditional desks and allows them to choose where they do their work, as long as they meet their daily goals.

Be it small or large, businesses need to be accommodative and employee valuing to retain the employees and to walk on the path of success. It can be done by availing HR services for small business enterprises. As one of the many challenges that many small businesses face is finding a way of working that is more effective, as well as more efficient; it is advisable to effectively apply the ABW model.

Pros of Activity Based Work

Better Communication and Knowledge Exchanging

ABW has proven to improve communication by increasing the frequency of interactions between team members, which makes it easier for teams to work together. It also makes it easier to share information and ideas (even from co-workers outside of your team), as people aren’t just talking to their desk mate, but to other people in the area as well. They don’t feel restricted and thoughts and ideas easily flow from one person to another.

Lucrative for Employees and Candidates

ABW is a philosophy that encourages companies to get rid of their desks and give employees the freedom to work wherever they feel most comfortable. Many companies and their employees have embraced this idea wholeheartedly because this shows the members that they are valued for their work.

A little freedom goes a long way and an ABW model certainly builds responsibility and boosts the morale of the employees. The candidates who want to apply also find this highly lucrative especially in these trying times where the pandemic has caused so much uncertainty.

Increased Productivity

many companies have moved away from the traditional cubicle-based office environment to a more open, activity-based design because of the proven increase in productivity. Many companies, since the introduction of activity-based working, have measured the levels of physical activity and interaction between colleagues on each floor, as well as the number of meetings the employees have had with clients and colleagues, and the number of emails sent and received. There is an exponential rise in everything!

Cons of Activity Based Work

While in theory, ABW might sound like an ideal setup for employees. However, there are some significant disadvantages to it that you need to keep in mind when considering moving to this type of office space. For instance, imagine the complete absence of desks! It can make for a messy and disorganized workplace, and it might not be very practical in many office configurations.

People Like Regularity and Routine

As humans, there is a certain need for regularity and routine in every one of us. This maintains a sense of calm and does not provoke anxiety and alarming responses. We like our habits and that is why we end up developing them in the first place!


For people who require quiet and need to be in their silent zone to work efficiently, this model can prove to be fatal. Someone randomly coming up and talking to you when you were just struck with an amazing idea for your work can be very disturbing and counterproductive. Sounds o people walking, chatting, and coffee machines whirring may leave employees disturbed and agitated.

A Sense of Disconnect

When there is such an environment where disturbances are inevitable, a lot of employees might want to stick to their earphones to focus on their work. This ultimately beat the purpose of spontaneous collaboration among team members and idea generative communication.

Also, there won’t be an emotional connection with your desk or your place in the office that an employee considers as a second home. The attachment also tends to reduce and this might result in haphazard work.

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Sana Vohra
Sana Vohra is a Marketing and Technology enthusiast who loves reading more than anything. She is a writer in equal measures: passion and profession. She enjoys being a writer as it makes her read more.

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