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New Office : Office Size?

Our company is investigating setting up shop in a (for us) large office (12,000 sq ft).  We have present needs for 6 core workers and perhaps two administrators.  Long term needs over 4 years are difficult to determine (and by then we would likely lease the remaining 12,000 sq ft on the floor) but may be approximately 25 - 30 total workers (24 core + 6 admin).

We aren't software developers but rathers system integrators and developers working in the aerospace field. We need meeting rooms and colaboration areas as well as offices large and quiet enough to conduct detailed technical phone conversations on.

So we're trying to determine from the start how large our offices need to be - I've seen offices ranging from 8x8 to 8x12, 12x12, 16x12, to 16x16 and larger.  As we're a bit scattered at the moment across several locations we don't have any experience with the realities of offices this large.

Does anyone have any recommendations on how large we should make our offices to make them effective work spaces without overwhelming us with empty and isolating space? All feedback is appreciated - architects are suprisingly useless at this point as we need opinions and information to work from to get anywhere with them it seems.

New office new space issues
Monday, March 31, 2003

According to the fellas who wrote Peopleware, you need about 100 square feet of space per person.  So if it's a one person officel, 10' x 10'.  A two-person office, 14'x 14', and so on.

Monday, March 31, 2003

Look at the furniture. I'm betting that you'll be purchasing the same set of furniture for every office. So figure out several layouts you like. Pick the desk, See how it fits in the room. Add a bookshelf or two. Measure for big desks if you may need dual head computers.

After you do that, you should have a pretty good idea what kind of space a developer will use :)

Mike Swieton
Tuesday, April 1, 2003

Why don't you create a Mock office, and like Mike suggests, plug in your furniture , get a feel for things.

Different developers are bound to have different space constraints, so what works for you might not be comfy for someone else, and vice versa..

Prakash S
Tuesday, April 1, 2003

As a software developer, I have found that about 120 sq ft (say 10' x 12', but I have been in some odd shaped rooms, too.) works out quite well.  This is plenty of room for a desk, computer table, file cabinet and book shelves.  There is also enough extra room for an work table for equipment if you're integrating some hardware, or you'll have a little space for meetings with one or maybe two other people.

This should be good for most people working at a desk.  It provides a little extra for small hardware projects, but if your developers need a lot of equipment in their office you'll need to enlarge accordingly.

The advice to try a mock up is good.  That is what the Santa Teresa architects did.

Tuesday, April 1, 2003

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