Has anyone seen my desk? It probably looks nothing like the spaces of ten years ago. In fact, today the office desk can be anywhere. Wireless technology, co-working, flexible workspaces, and new demands for amenities are changing the way companies deal with office space. Modern companies want a friendlier, more vibrant work community that’s reflected in the top office design trends of 2017.
There’s little chance of being glued to your seat for eight hours a day in the new office environment. Employees are demanding more comfortable workspaces, á la coffee shop or cafe. Think lounges with large tables for co-working and spaces with cozy chairs for thoughtful peer discussions.
Adaptable Office Furniture
Workspace is a huge expense and businesses don’t want to waste any of it. Flexible furniture arrangements are becoming key. Employees want to be able to move from working alone to creating large collaborative spaces. Pieces that can lock and unlock together, that are easily movable, and have a range of uses will continue trending.
New Office Amenities
The new employee mindset wants a work environment with some personality. Long gone are the sterile suit-and-tie days. Employee benefits stretch beyond health care and retirement to a fun atmosphere. This could mean a pet-friendly work environment, or fun spaces where employees can gather to blow off steam. Ping-pong tables, lounges, and company fitness rooms are in, cubicles are out.
Work Quiet Zones
In the ultra-collaborative work environments of today, there is pushback from employees that need a quiet space to focus on their work. Expect to see the development of privacy pods or designated quiet zones that allow employees to escape unwanted distractions. Providing employees the option of working in a collaborative space or a private space depending on the task at hand will create a need for activity-based office planning.
Environmental-Friendly Work Space
Thinking green is becoming more vital. At Google’s various locations, employees are surrounded by orange groves or indoor aquariums. More spaces are using living plants instead of plastic to improve indoor air quality. Natural light is important in the design space.
Employee Well Being
The next generation of workers is incredibly health-conscious and aware of the dangers of long hours working at a desk. Workplaces incorporating wellness into their design will continue trending. The expansion of standing desks, use of stability ball chairs, and use of smart lighting isn’t over.
The workplace is now a tool in recruiting and keeping quality employees. Having a smart office space design is just as vital an amenity as the perks like healthcare and retirement.