What does the future hold for the office? As practical demands on places of business change and evolve, so too do trends of office layout, furnishings and decoration. So where are these trends heading and what direction should your business follow to make sure you remain current in your working environment? If you are planning an office refit or redecoration this Summer, whether in London or beyond, check out our 6 tips for office trends.
1. The Rebirth of Open Plan
Open plan office layouts are here to stay. Probably because they’re super flexible and facilitate collaborative working environments. However, they have evolved to be something quite different from the vast swathes of identikit desks that were once common in large offices. The open plan offices of today are carefully laid out to create zones and use colour to direct the flow of office traffic. With adjustable height desks, each workstation can be personalised to create the best space for the individual who’s working there.
2. Flexible Furniture
This brings us to flexibility. A buzzword in office design. It’s all about allowing spaces within an office to fulfil multiple functions. The best way to achieve flexibility is through furniture. By installing bespoke furniture you can ensure that all of your space is fully utilised and clever solutions concealed. So your reception desk can become a service bar for networking evenings, for example. Modular furniture can be moved and amended as your organisation grows, so your space can evolve with you.
3. Integrated Technology
As communication technology becomes more central to business development, it is vital to include technical capacity within your office design. This could mean wall mounted touch screens, power points within furniture or smart boards, tables and even walls in meeting spaces! Once your wireless connectivity is integrated in an initial fit out, it is fairly straightforward for you to update technology as required, so it’s key to have the infrastructure there from the outset. Your decoration can then work around this.
4. Running with a Theme
Themed offices are not just for tech start ups. Similarly, the theme doesn’t have to be computer games of the mid ’90’s! A well thought out theme for your office decoration can be industry or branding related. Or it could be more of a flight of fancy! Use colour and art works to highlight aspects of your business. In this way, your themed decoration encourages your workforce and clients to approach the business in a unified and proactive way. Taking another approach, some creative industries use a more abstract theme to build a sense of playfulness and innovation.
5. The Living Office
It’s commonly accepted now that greenery within an office space increases relaxation and mental wellbeing for workers. As a consequence, this can increase focus and productivity for the business. When planning your office redecoration, then, incorporate greenery from an early stage. Plan a living wall within a social or lobby area for example. These walls of greenery use layers of wall mounted planters to create a lush leafy setting that looks both contemporary and organic.
6. Break Out Zones
The evolved office no longer focusses solely on desk based work. For your next office fit out, consider the benefit of break out areas. Use glass partitioning to offer space for small meetings and one-to-ones. Informal pod seating is great for casual brainstorms and social networking. This attention to a multi-layered office structure facilitates activity based working. This is an approach to business that allows workers to choose from different types of space depending on the activity undertaken. As a strategy that is increasing in popularity, it’s important to have an office that accommodates.
When you plan your office redecoration or fit out, it’s vital to think about the future. Going too far into one concept will see your office more likely to appear dated in a couple of years time. So give a nod to all of the essentials here, and you will achieve a contemporary and vibrant finish that will facilitate the productivity of your business.