The importance of having a modern office design concept goes beyond simple aesthetics. What your office looks like says a lot about your company and the direction it is heading. Old, dated furniture and fixtures tell others that your company is unable to keep up with the times. A modern, blended solution and design concept will let others know you’re an innovative industry leader. Plus, implementing a cool and trendy environment is important for attracting top talent.
Today, salary and compensation aren’t enough to attract the best and brightest employees. The office environment and its design have a direct impact on employee productivity. People want to work in an environment that will stimulate creativity, collaboration, and communication while reducing anxiety and stress. As such, we share a few design concepts that will allow your team to feel comfortable in the workplace.
Industrial Office Design
The industrial office trend came into prominence in the late 2000s, yet it is still popular today. Offices with this look typically work in a big open space with exposed ceilings. Features such as exposed brick walls and natural, untreated hardwood floors also are telltale signs of an industrial design concept. To create this type of space, businesses will set up shop in recovered industrial spaces and factories. The message this kind of office sends is that the company is unconventional, maverick, creative, rebellious, and outside the mainstream. In fact, you’ll find many start-up companies embrace this design to save money on rent and renovations. However, if you choose an industrial look, exercise caution. Converting a building built in the early 20th century to meet our 21st century, high-tech needs may eat up any initial savings.
Sitting all day is fast becoming the biggest health challenge facing the workforce. Individuals who sit at a desk for long periods often fall victim to negative health effects. To address the problem, companies now add new technology to the office. Ergonomic chairs and exercise ball chairs are two great examples. The exercise ball chair lets the person sitting on it actively exercise; they can bounce up and down, exercising their legs. Further, the act of sitting on the ball forces the person to engage their core muscles. The body’s core activates to keep the person sitting upright. Additionally, people like to alternate between sitting and standing throughout the day. Desk risers raise and lower the workstation so the employee can stand and stretch whenever they need to. Another great tool is mobile desks, as they stimulate creativity and collaboration and can kick start anyone feeling sluggish and unmotivated.
Glass Doors and Walls
With each passing year, glass walls and doors increase in popularity. Many companies who stay on top of design trends find they’re an important design element for any cutting-edge office’s interior design. Glass in the workplace creates literal transparency—all that glass keeps workers from feeling alone and isolated in the office. At the same time, they are highly soundproof. Therefore, employees can still focus on their work, concentrate during a meeting, and take phone calls without disturbing everyone else. Plus, all that glass lets natural sunlight soak the office. Exposure to natural sunlight increases vitamin D in the body and, in turn, improves everyone’s mood. It is a fantastic way to fight seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a form of depression that occurs in the winter when there is less daylight.
Activity-based working is one of the newest and hottest trends in office design. It means that an employee can work anywhere in the building that suits their current activity. For example, if an employee needs a quiet, isolated place to focus on a task, they can find a room to do so. However, in the event they need to collaborate on a project with their peers, everyone can gather around a table out in the open. Designers develop different areas within the activity-based design to accommodate every need. They typically implement open office areas with the traditional set up of desks and phones as well as small, soundproof areas for privacy. The idea is to have a space for everything, so there is never a moment that workers don’t have space to accomplish their goals.
Another design trend gaining momentum is the flexible workspace. It is similar to the activity-based design in that workers don’t have an assigned, specific workstation that only they can work at. Flexible workspaces have desks, tables, and chairs that are easy to move and resize. When an employee wants to move close to collaborate with someone, they can roll a desk and chair right next to them and keep working. Nothing within this office design comment should exist in one place—it’s all movable and allows for constant change. For companies thinking about implementing a flexible workspace, it’s important they go paperless. Not assigning workstations is possible due to the reduction of paperwork. Workers are more mobile, as they can grab their laptops and move to a setting that is conducive for their project.
Perhaps the most exciting and powerful design choice is to bring nature into the office. Biophilic design is transforming the workspace in wonderful ways. The premise of biophilic design is that people have an innate need to connect with nature. When we make this connection, we are happier—you’ll find employees are more productive, creative, and generally more at ease. Many companies find their employees say it improves their mental and physical health. Interior designers accomplish this with lots of natural light, water features, plants, and views of beautiful landscapes. Additionally, the abundance of plants purifies the air naturally and creates oxygen in the office. This relaxed, Zen-like atmosphere at work is sure to ease the stresses of any job.
An ideal setting is one that allows people to focus and concentrate when they want to but also encourages communication and collaboration. If you’re ready to create a utopia for your employees, Rework is here to help. Our inventory has everything you need—from refurbished storage and filing cabinets to new and used office tables. We want to help you ensure your employees can perform at their best day after day. Contact us about our full-service furniture solutions today.