Virginia Schmidt Office Design April 22nd, 2018 - 13:15:43
Times are changing and these changes are reflected in the current trends in office design. Designers have to change their thinking away from traditional office designs and towards current trend. Office designers are seeing the following changes in the office environment: 1. Businesses are thinking more consciously about renewable resources and recycled furniture 2. They are becoming more collaborated 3. Offices are being used as a branding tool 4. The creation of offices with employees in mind has become crucial in employee retention rates 5. Hoteling/Moteling is much more popular
Having access to good artificial lighting or daylight is known to increase productivity. When people work under bad lighting conditions they can develop eyestrain headaches and general irritability. Particularly dark spaces can have a pronounced psychological effect and depress the brain. Employees should have access to their own lighting so that they can make the necessary lighting adjustments depending on the task they are carrying out. Well-designed artificial lighting will increase functionality however there is no comparison to natural daylight and this should be maximized wherever possible. Windows provide a connection to the outside world and should be used whenever the building design allows for it. Open plan layouts that employ low cubicle panels or glass panels can maximize the entry of natural light into the office. Skylights are also a good alternative when windows are not an option.
What lies ahead for occupancy ratios? As mobile technology improves as home working becomes more viable with bandwidth increases and as part-time working becomes more widespread so the need for one desk per person diminishes. Increasingly modern office design is moving towards a ratio of 7 or 8 desks for every 10 staff. The next question is then about saving money by reducing the overall office space rental or to perhaps give some of the space over to social and team purposes? One of the leading adopters of modern office design incorporating flexible working and shared desk allocation CISCO Systems works on a ratio of 160 sq ft per person. Clearly they havent used unallocated desks and mobile working as a cost-cutting measure.
What Can a Better Office Design Accomplish? Maybe you are on the fence about whether to even change your office design. Why mess with perfectly good office space and furniture that could last a few more years? It may be standing on all four legs but is it really doing its job? Outdated office furniture limits office space and productivity. New office furniture is designed with function and space in mind. You can maximize both by updating old pieces. Consider the benefits the company and the employees would receive from by improving the office space: