Few businesses appreciate the impact office design has on the productivity and engagement of their employees. Non-optimised workplaces are a reason why three in four workers are finding it hard to work effectively leading to less innovation, productivity and engagement to work. The staff work under cramped spaces making them underperform, thus, disinterested in their jobs. Few businesses appreciate the impact office design, including lighting in office, has on the productivity and engagement of their employees.
What Drives Office Design Trends?
Mobile technology is at the forefront of the trend setters, untethering employees from their desks and giving them the freedom to work when, where and how they choose. Embracing this technology has increased the flexibility in employees’ engagement to work, which has seen businesses allowing their staff to report to work at different times of the day as long as the desired results are achieved. Moreover, the technology creates an avenue for people to work remotely, even from the comforts of their home. As such, company may have its employees working alongside, independent contractors, freelancers and consultants.
Collaborative engagement birth creative working styles and this is another trend-driven outcome of implementing current and resourceful office designs that foster such outcomes. When used in tandem with mobile technology, the two will bolster the freedom of working anywhere, anytime. So, employees will not have to spend long hours behind an office desk; they can work from home, the park bench, coffee shop or any workspace of their choosing. Below are three major office design trends worth considering for your business:
1. Modular Layouts
Modular layouts are the answer to the ever changing functions of the today’s office spaces that have become increasingly interchangeable. The layouts allow businesses to relocate their furniture to meet their current needs without having to work out available room. The name of the game is multi-purpose customisable workspaces which completely eliminate the need for dedicated office terminals.
2. Home-Like Offices
Comfort is one important facet of working space that Millennials are keen on demanding, especially, if they have to work long hours behind the office desk. Therefore, the office space should feel cosy allowing the employees to feel at home while at the office. Consider investing in a fully-stocked snack area and throw in some lounging couches, a few play tables such as ping pong and foosball in the office, some plants and allow more natural lighting.
An attractive and comfortable place of work will increase the employee engagement even when the company is flexible enough to allow the staff to come to work, or not, based on their personal schedules. If the company does not make such investments, then the employees will opt to stay and work from home or the park or the coffee shop.
3. Multi-Purpose Workspaces
It is high time companies considered adapting their physical spaces to the increasing diversity of the workforce. For instance, a sizable conferencing table will be perfect for a small team of around six people working on a project to meet and discuss. Such meeting will need some brainstorming and white boards will also be vital accessories worth having. Conversely, the snack and lounge should have spaces that can be spontaneously used for social interactions and coaching sessions. Most importantly, the office space should promote transparency while supporting various purposes that include restorative reflection on a personal level and group meetings.
In as much as the office design should have a space that encourages collaboration, there also should be room for privacy. For instance, a staff member negotiating a big contract with a new client should not hold such vital discussion in an open space where others can see and hear. Such negotiations should be done in a private area such as a closed-door room or a small conference room. A phone booth can also be a great way of enhancing privacy like in the case where an employee has to make a call and inquire about a sick child. In short, the design should focus on multi-purpose office spaces that balance the need for individual focus with that of collaboration.
Office design is a critical investment that businesses should consider if they are to increase their employees’ productivity. Along with the use of mobile technology, companies will establish robust working relations that are more flexible as the staff enjoys the freedom of working anywhere, anytime. Productivity in any business is tethered on the capacity to efficiently share information and collaboration within work spaces that support such goals. So, break down the walls and allow the spaces to become creative and the workforce will become comfortable, compliant and more productive.