Office Interior Design Experts
How to create a space that works for today and plans for tomorrow
Finding the balance
The pandemic has created an accelerated change in the world of office working over the past year. Remote working has overtaken office based work for many and, while this may continue for some time to come, the office will always remain the hub of central control and operation.
Below, we look at the many ways in which the future of office design could lead to positive and exciting changes for companies and employees alike.
If you would like to know how the Future of Office Design may affect your business, why not book a free space plan with us?
Meet & Greet
The reception point for any company is the face of the organisation. Once a customer or a client walks through the door, there is an ample opportunity to engage in terms of values, culture and branding. Cost will always influence the choice of material and design, but this area provides the chance at a first impression. Your business must be represented in the very best light. Including storage solutions to ensure organisation can limit a cluttered feel in a smaller space and clean lines and a light colour palette will portray a professional feel to your business.
Durability of materials should be considered and seating for a central meeting point can be used. If space is limited, this area can also provide an extra break out space for office employees. It can also allow clients to be met without having to enter any other space. With social distancing, this is a very practical solution for a meeting area particularly if you include a refreshment area.
(Mixed desk working space)
The future of office design will involve high levels of diversity and adaptability. Being fully equipped for future-proofing means making the most of every inch of space. Using storage space where possible and installing moveable furniture on castors will ensure any business can transform their environment to fit the situation. With the many changes we have seen over the past year, we know that change is certain and as a consequence we must be prepared for anything.
Creating an agile space means that you can use it for anything required. Conferences, training days, ad hoc meetings. The choice is yours. The needs of a company change from day to day, therefore managing the layout of this area is very important. Setting it up to be reconfigured at any point means choosing sustainable solutions. Such flexibility allows teams to jump in an out as needed without notice.
(Mix breakout/team space, ideas, training, virtual conference)
We can see that the old model of office working is no longer practical or required. Collaboration is key to achieving the results that companies require. Ideas, productivity and innovation are carved from time spent together, dissecting ideas and solutions. This works best in a space that allows for comfort, adaptability, access to technology and coffee!
Using whiteboards or smart boards to brainstorm works well. Moveable seating arrangements allow teams to move groups or engage with their colleagues as necessary. Collaboration means separating to focus on ideas and then coming back together again. To do this well, the environment in which the team works needs to reflect this.
Quiet spaces are essential for all employees. Not only to take a phone call but to sit with other colleagues in a space enabling concentration and focus. While agile and collaboration areas are similar, this space is dedicated to those who prefer quiet reflection either separately or together.
The shift towards working together is not always viable and while there is no doubt that it is the future, we will all, at some point, need to step aside and take some downtime. It is a very important element within the office which is supported by an article from The Harvard Business Review. They surveyed a group of employees and found that 4% of people were concerned about their privacy. While this is not a huge percentage, it still reflects that some prefer a space for privacy if required.
The central hub of the office, a hot desk space and its layout is key to the foundation of an excellent design. A move towards unassigned seating is now seen as the go-to for most organisations. Many companies such as Google and Facebook believe that this type of arrangement facilitates chance meetings and fosters innovation and creation.
With the development of smart technology, laptops and wireless capabilities, there is no longer the need for large bulky equipment for every employee. Grabbing your laptop and moving spaces is commonplace. Such seating also allows for less clutter, greater organisation and an increased ability to share office space, especially for those who choose a part-time work from home model or for a colleague who works in the field.
(Quiet, relaxing space)
Ensuring that employees are taken care of is now seen as a vital element of every workplace. Work-life balance is a term that has become increasingly common in tackling employee retention and absenteeism. As a result, creating a mindful centre is an added benefit for an office space. It allows anyone requiring quite reflection and alone time to be given the time they need to regroup and recharge.
The boardroom is no longer seen as the centre of productivity. In fact, it is viewed negatively now by many companies such as Facebook, Google and LinkedIn. They are seen as restrictive and provide no real means towards innovation or creativity. It is an archaic, hierarchical space that no longer serves as a productive space.
Again, we see many companies turning to other options where the use of shared spaces and pods are used instead. Round instead of long rectangular tables are used where flexibility and movement are key. Hours spent in stuffy boardrooms are no longer in our future.
Casual zones are the new boardrooms. Idea’s flow and conversations lead to innovative solutions and problem solving. Opportunities are made in spaces such as this. It is now seen that giving employees the freedom to move freely and not being tied to a specific location within their office will foster development and wellbeing.