What do you visualize when you hear the term, “cubicle office system?” Do you think of a basic workstation–on e of many in the room? Do you think of a telemarketing center, or an enclosed environment where everything is quiet and focused? Do you visualize very plain partitions, or something made out of glass?
Actually, all of these descriptions can apply to a cubicle office system. Cubicles are actually modular office environments. They were originally designed to replace open concept offices that consisted of rows of desk with no privacy dividers of any kind. The term “Action Office” was coined by Herman Miller to connote the new position that the cubicle was intended to occupy in the modern business world. It was to be a place ACTION facilitated by a private space dedicated to focus and task completion.
Well into its fifth decade of use, the cubicle office system of today is more versatile than ever before. On one end of the spectrum, it is a basic workstation that offers companies on tight budgets the opportunity to staff larger numbers of employees in a relatively small office suite. Most Houston companies in this category typically opt for refurbished cubicles because they are priced significantly lower than systems made with exclusively new components. A variety of industries utilize modular workstations for accounting, engineering support, sales, and customer service.
The call center cubicle, also known as the telemarketer’s cubicle, is a specialized form of the modular workstation. It is perhaps the smallest cubicle office system used anywhere in the business world. Its compact size is intended to focus the telemarketer on his or her computer screen while an auto-dialer places phone calls to prospective customers. While admittedly generic, it’s form supports this function superbly, as evidenced by its widespread popularity among survey companies, collection companies, and a variety of soliciting agencies.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, the cubicle office system looks more like an office than a cubicle. Partition walls reach all the way to the ceiling. Almost all contain glass panels that function as windows. Some partitions are made completely of translucent glass that protects the privacy of the individual while simultaneously supplementing office lighting with filtered, natural light.
A cubicle office system can also be designed to support creative processes. Work surface areas can be enlarged to support manual drawing or drafting. Meeting areas can also be integrated into a series of cubicle workstations so that individual employees can push back their chairs and instantly confer with teammates on project dynamics.