JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas –
The Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center Office of the Future initiative is helping the center’s Detachment 10 create an innovative, flexible office environment in limited space.
O2F focuses on developing sustainable, hybrid workplaces that support flexible schedules and collaborative work, empowering employees with technology and enabling teams to work from home or in the office on any given day.
When Det. 10, located at Air Force Global Strike Command headquarters at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, heard AFGSC was doing some reorganization, it decided to go O2F, said Robert Aldrich, Det. 10 deputy director.
“As a result of that reorganization we were moved to a different building and went from one large open workspace, and an office for our commander, to a series of rooms and a much smaller open area,” said Aldrich. “There simply wasn’t enough space allocated to retain the old system of everyone having their own cubicle, so the O2F concept presented a workable solution for our space reduction.”
The new 2,790-square-foot space was not as large as the original O2F model implemented at AFIMSC’s headquarters at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, but the concept, plans and resources made it easy for the detachment to scale it to their needs, Aldrich added.
“The O2F SharePoint site, the ‘O2F Download’ newsletter and emails were great resources to have when designing our O2F conversion,” he said. “We used the available floor plans and 3D renderings for Bays 3 and 4 in San Antonio to inform our planning and adjusted those ideas and designs to fit our available space.”
Aldrich noted the immediate successes of O2F, such as the ability to reduce the detachment’s infrastructure footprint without reducing the team’s mission effectiveness.
“We now have open spaces and easily reconfigurable furniture so the entire office can sit together in a single area for a staff meeting,” said Aldrich. “Also, the ability to have multiple presentations simultaneously, or the ability for small groups to collaborate in our team room or sit in on the same virtual meetings in private, and not be distracted by the other people in the office, are capabilities we didn’t have before.”
The detachment’s new O2F layout has also received positive responses from other organizations within the building.
“They come in to check things out and make comments such as, ‘this is a place I would want to come and work in,’ or ‘this space is like ours, it doesn’t have windows either, but this is a happy space, I want to work in a happy space,’ and, ‘this is what I was trying to get our leadership to do for us,’” Aldrich said.
He encourages other detachments and Air Force organizations to consider adopting the O2F model.
“Embrace the opportunity for change and modernization. The world, the office and how people work has changed dramatically in the last 10 years or so,” he said. “This is a great opportunity to adapt office environments and workspaces everywhere to those changes and make your space a place where your people want to come to work and feel connected.”
AFIMSC has 10 geographically separated detachments that support the installation and mission support needs of the Air Force’s major commands, U.S. Space Force and National Capitol Region, to include their mission needs across the globe.
For more information on O2F, click here.