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NFMT Day 3: News and Highlights

NFMT: That's a Wrap

Thank you everyone for a great show. Here's our wrap-up video:

NFMT All Year 'Round

(1:00 pm) Education for facilities managers isn't just a three-day event. It's what we do all year.

Open Offices: They're Not That Bad, Are They?

(11:30 am) Open office plans are the scourge of the devil! Open offices are the greatest design trend in the history of the world! There doesn't seem to be any middle ground in the raging debate about open offices. But Chris Walinski, building operations manager of Munich Reinsurance, showed NFMT attendees how open offices can not only be successful, but can also contribute to the health and wellness of occupants. 

Walinski has worked on more than 30 open office projects all over the world. He said that at the beginning of projects, at least 50 percent of occupants were opposed to the idea of the open office. "But in our space, after occupation, over 90 percent are happy with the space," said Walinski.

One of the key complaints about open office is poor acoustics -- that is, workers are distracted by noise throughout the space. Walinski provided some tips to overcome this concern: Acoustic treatments on furniture, soundmasking or white nosie, and using aisles for acoustic breaks. As well, he says, it's important to separate gathering spots from working space. Don't put desks right next to a copier, for instance. And finally, give people "conversation" rooms, collaboration space, and getaway space so that if they're annoyed at their desks, they have a respite. 

Being successful with an open office design, says Walinski is really about understanding how people work, how they use space, and then tailoring the space to those needs. Or, put more succinctly:

NFMT Day 3

(7:45 am) Let's finish on a high note! 

Contact FacilitiesNet Editorial Staff »   posted on: 3/29/2019

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