Our Modern Workspace

Frequently asked questions

Why is the council developing new ways of working?

Covid-safe restrictions, and budget decisions that will see the council eventually use fewer buildings, mean changes for how we all share office space together. We are developing flexible working arrangements that combine what’s best about home and office working.

When can we return to offices?

The majority of us have been working from home for over two years now, with access to hub buildings for anyone who needs it.   The message until now has been not to rush back to offices and continue to work from home if you can.

We know lots of you wish to  continue to work from home, and that is no problem, however,  the hybrid working approach allows us to have the best of both worlds so would encourage teams to think about having more face to face meetings.

What’s happening about reducing the number of offices the council uses?

As part of setting its budget this year, the council decided to make £400,000 savings by cutting down on the number of offices we use. We have a huge portfolio of buildings, all of which incur maintenance and heating costs. We are working towards identifying which buildings will be available in the longer term.

How do I arrange a face-to-face meeting?

  • All hub buildings have flex desks and meeting rooms to book. You can do this via the booking system.
  • If you previously worked from a hub building, you can sit at your old desk if the building is not currently being refurbished
  • If you didn’t previously work at a hub building, flex desk or meeting rooms are available to book.
  • Follow the guidance for coming into offices and make sure the site premises manager is aware

Can I still come into the office even if I do not have a meeting?

  • Yes, you can work from a hub building if you need / want to
  • Either work from your own desk or book a flex desk or meeting room

Can I go back into an office that is not a hub building?

  • Only hub buildings are available to work from just now.

Please note –, some of these offices are not always opened daily for use; if you need to use them, you must contact the Site Premises Manager in advance to ensure access.

You can find site premises manager details and access guides for each office here – Our Modern Workspace

What does new ways of working mean?

Most employees have told us that they would like a mix of working from home and from an office. Examples of what works in other organisations, and what we are looking to introduce, include touchdown zones, more flex desks, more break out areas for collaborative discussion, private spaces and meeting rooms, and fewer permanent offices and assigned desks.

What are the expectations at the moment for how employees will share offices?

Survey findings show that most employees want to work from home, with some/no time in offices. We expect therefore to move away from arrangements where employees have their own desks and are in an office Monday to Friday. We have developed an approach where desks are available to book for use by different employees as required, It may be that some teams need a different arrangement and managers have provided details of this to be included in the proposals.

Making a shared approach work will mean for example adopting a clear desk policy.

As we move forward in all towns, a reminder if you have not already started to clear out desks and review any paperwork that can be digitised. Please discuss going into offices and making a start with your manager.

A guide to resources data and information management disposal will be available shortly.

What’s the timescale for putting new arrangements in place?

There are lots of details to sort out so we expect work to carry on, town by town, over the rest of this year and into next year.

If you need access to one of the Hub offices please continue to contact your manager and Site Premises Manager.

We will update you again as we continue to make progress. If you have any questions in the meantime, you are welcome to contact us at ourmoderworkspace@argyll-bute.gov.uk

What’s the process for deciding how we will use offices in the future?

The plan overall is to look at how we use offices on a town by town basis. This will take into account the needs of employees and members of the public, as well as any opportunities for working more closely with partners. Where capacity and demand allow, we will consider creating a modern public sector hub in each town.