We've been hiring like crazy here and have had to move some furniture out of the way to open up space for new folks. I took this as an opportunity to improve the work environment. Previously, our setup looked much like this:
We tore down those cube walls and assigned teams to sit together in pods of four. Engineers, QA and Product Manager are all mixed in together. Here's the result:
The environment is much more open and collaborative. And, perhaps counterintuitively, it's quieter. I suppose folks are more aware of each other and keep their voices down as a result.