If you like to keep your finger firmly on the office design pulse, keep reading. In this blog, we take a look at three of the hottest workspace design-related buzzwords you’re likely to hear in 2019, and the trends that lie behind them.
- Activity-based working
You won’t get far when you’re exploring developments in office design without coming across the term ‘activity-based working’. This idea centres on giving employees a choice about how and where they work. It means creating various settings within your office that are each designed for different tasks. For example, in addition to a main area comprising workstations, you can create concentration zones that are set up to be calming and quiet. These spaces, which should be set up away from the hubbub of busy areas, are designed to allow workers to focus on tasks that require a lot of concentration.
You could also establish breakout zones complete with comfy seating where people can discuss ideas without worrying about disturbing others. The idea with these areas is that they allow for spontaneous meetings and encourage greater collaboration and creativity. You may wish to give these zones a café vibe by adding dining tables and chairs. Touches like this will help to differentiate them from your main office.
- Crave-able offices
Because many people are now able to do their jobs remotely, offices are increasingly having to entice workers to use them. This is why the concept of the ‘crave-able’ office has arisen. In short, this refers to creating a workspace that people genuinely want to use and feel drawn to. To achieve this result, organisations have to design comfortable, practical and enjoyable spaces for their employees. Speaking to the Chicago Tribune about this topic recently, Ed Nolan from property company JLL said sophisticated businesses are ensuring they meet the full range of worker needs, from providing reliable technology in the right places to getting room temperatures right. All of this helps to encourage people to use offices.
When it comes to creating a ‘crave-able’ office yourself, the key is to respond to the needs and preferences of your personnel. This includes getting the basics right (for example, providing comfortable office chairs) and incorporating those important extras that make a difference to people’s experiences. For instance, you might decide to include a games room and/or gym, and little touches like offering bowls of fresh fruit for people to tuck into can also help.
- Biophilic design
A biophilic office is one that embraces nature and incorporates it for workers to experience and enjoy. It’s based on the biophilia hypothesis, which is the idea of biologist Edward Wilson that humans are genetically predisposed to focus on and affiliate with nature. With extensive research indicating that the presence of plants in offices can help to increase productivity and enhance worker morale, it’s not hard to understand why this idea is high on the agendas of many office designers.
There are a variety of ways to incorporate nature into your workspace. From installing pot plants, to showcasing nature-themed art, to creating ‘green walls’ composed of various shrubs, you can use your imagination when it comes to this aspect of workspace design.
Make sure you keep checking back in with the Furniture At Work blog to stay up to date on all the latest office design trends.