Workplace Trends 2018
It’s hardly a secret that our world is changing all around us to accommodate the changing landscape of office culture. The familiar office concepts of the 90’s have come crashing down. Literally. Those cube farms lasted over two decades! But what may have worked then doesn’t necessarily work now. High cubicle walls have been removed in favor of open floorplans. Group interaction is key for young workers to thrive in team environments. Employee satisfaction and comfort is valued higher than compensation. So, it’s clear that our value system is changing and creating an environment where an employee wants to work is vital to longevity. How can you do this? Well, for starters, think about how your employees interact and design based around those patterns. Here are some pointers on how designers are making the office space a better space for employees.
Environments Based on Task
Forget about assigned desks and start thinking about the work flow itself and the tasks that will be performed in a given space. Create simple comfortable work desks that provide basic amenities like power access and let the employee decide how to use that space to best suit their own personal needs. Having this freedom of choice and fluidity means employees can choose where and how they will perform their work, leading to higher productivity.
To promote the highest levels of productivity, employees must feel their mental and physical health are centered and under control. The idea of spending long hours in the office can make sticking to a regular workout regimen after hours seem difficult to maintain. And while you certainly will not have any say in how employees manage their time OFF the clock, there are some easy measures companies can take to help employees get back on track with their fitness goals while IN the office. From fitness facilities on site for quick workouts during breaks or before or after work to sit-stand desks to keep the flood flowing and even burn calories while you work, the goal is to encourage movement throughout the day and avoiding a sedentary lifestyle. Mental health is also really important. Employees who have healthy social interactions with co-workers demonstrate positive attitudes in the workplace. Help bring your team together with team building exercises to develop stronger relationships.
Ever feel like it’s dark when you arrive to work and dark when you leave work? If you are longing for some sunlight in your life and aren’t able to get out into nature during long grinding hours in the office, bring nature to you. Bring plants and natural light to the workplace. Outside elements can bring positive vibes indoors. But it doesn’t have to end with basic plant life adorning the office shelves and walls. Using other elements that are reminiscent of nature like more natural looking furniture finishes will add even more of a natural feel.
Do you spend more time at work than you do at home? If you are anything like most of us, that’s probably generally true. But it doesn’t have to feel that way. Make your office feel like home. Bring simple residential conveniences to your work space and get comfortable. Casual spaces in the office are becoming more common. This relaxed atmosphere will help with office morale since people will feel comfortable being there. Create a lounge space with sofas and comfortable chairs - common areas serve as the heart of the office, a place to step away and recharge, and a place for people to meet and discuss ideas.
Tech Driven Design
Technology influences our behavior and our daily activities from the way we communicate to the way we work. It should be a seamless transition from work to home to travel to anywhere you stay connected in order to create a consistent experience. Simple technological conveniences can be built into furniture as well. Furniture with electrical outlets and charging USB ports are becoming more commonplace. Cable management is also a key tool in creating a clutter free work place environment, making it more pleasant without ugly roaming cables. Accommodating basic power needs without all the clutter will help communication and work flow.
As we can see, the dynamics of the modern office have changed dramatically. As a result, employees are exhibiting higher levels of work satisfaction and comfort, and these new comfortable work environments can stimulate a better work experience and results. Which of these trends will you try in your office? Let us know!