Well another year has gone by! What can we expect to see more of in 2018 and beyond with respect to office design? Quite honestly, a lot of what we’ve already seen! Over the last few years, we’ve worked out some of the kinks with some of the design elements and made improvements. For example, the open office space plan has always been debatable but new developments in technology, materials and even furniture has helped to create a happy medium and a more productive environment to meet the requirements of various working personality types.
Here are a few other office design trends we’ll being seeing more of in 2018 that will influence the we way we work going forward:
The Sharing Economy
Our society is now wanting to share what they have with others. Not only sharing with friends but even with strangers…for a fee of course. We are now in a world where giving a ride, having a guest in your spare room or even having someone on your couch has become a way of life and earning income potential. This mentality has also made its way into our office environment. Hot desking is where no one necessarily owns the desk and is more of a communal work space. Employees can work at the office for the day or a few hours. Once you’re done, you just get up and leave. This business model is said to encourage a more collaborative environment and result in increased productivity. A similar type of shared workplace is also called co-working. Researchers are saying that this concept brings a different type of energy and connectivity that did not exist before. These shared resources also help to reduce the foot print and contributes to significant overhead/operational savings.
Moveable Hideout Spaces
The open office space is great for connecting with the team and bouncing ideas off one and another. But there is still a need for employees to separate themselves from the action of collaboration and focus on getting work done. One might think, how is anyone supposed to get things done with all the distractions? While these spaces are good opportunities to get away and focus on work, these hideouts can be strategically placed to also create a chance meeting. By strategically placing moveable hideouts in areas near common areas, bathrooms or even near the water cooler, we may be able lead to solutions faster and move an action or idea forward. These chance encounters are said to spark meaningful conversation amongst colleagues even when they are tucked away during head-down focus time.
We all look for areas of inspiration. It has been proven that light, colour, furniture, seating and overall environment can affect the way people think and produce. Thinking outside of the box will be the norm for office designers as we continue to create that epic work space. Billiard tables, sleep pods, micro kitchens you name it, companies are now offering this to achieve a sense of comfort, well being or to simulate the feeling of an at-home environment.
Biophilic office design is the official term. It is all the rage with workplace trends and it also here to stay. Without sounding too cliché, it’s human nature. The feeling of being part of our environment and one with nature is in our DNA. As work schedules get busier and longer, it becomes increasingly more important for us to feel balanced in our every day work lives. This provides us with psychological well being. This human-nature connection provides us with a sense of well being, balance and overall purpose to who we are and what we do. Whether it’s bigger windows to see the outdoors, bringing greenery indoors and having natural light in our workspace, this will become the ideal work environment we all want to achieve.
It is important to create a work environment where your team can feel motivated. A great office design strategy should elevate productivity and morale. This can also help to promote and reinforce a corporate identity. Designers are making project considerations in understanding that not every employee has to be situated in a specific spot on a permanent basis. Our society has become more fluid in the way we work. We may start our day working at a bench, then migrate to a more quiet location to concentrate more on a specific task. Buh-bye traditional office design! Say hello to the agile office layout!
The future of the workplace is looking brighter and means we are working smarter. Consider factoring in these important elements into your next office redesign project. You’ll be happy you did it for your company and for your team. Contact one of our consultants today 1-888-304-3114.