While there will be lots of previews and articles coming out tackling the design trends for the year ahead, it’s kind of relevant that we go past the basic workplace trends that will be hip and look at what may be the “in” things in the world of design for 2018.
We take a deeper look, not only at how workplace design will evolve, but also at how these workplace design strategies will affect work pace in our office spaces this 2018.
Design will be based on activity
This year, we’ll see a shift in focus towards how we move in the work environment. By allowing the staff to make a choice where they work requires a shift of personal storage, the use of centralizes lockers will be the norm this year.
Open-plan work spaces will still be here but the designs will be more advanced in terms of planning. Bigger, clustered workstations will have screens that will give staff a sense of privacy. The number of people in work areas will be reduced, separated by panels or meeting rooms.
This year’s version of the activity-based workstation will change how we view breakout spaces. They will no longer just places to relax or to have meetings. Some areas will be designed to make it more conducive to solo work. These kinds of spaces have “feel like home”, where the staff feels comfortable and less pressured.
Besides the usual meeting rooms, activity-based work spaces will have areas where teams can concentrate on collaboration. Aside from that, work spaces will also have quiet zones where people can concentrate, far from interruptions and background noise.
Design will be more data-driven
In having a focus based on the unique needs of member of the staff in each workplace, there is a growing need to study the company. Away to do this is by getting data from the work area itself.
At the moment, there are available services and devices that gather and translate data about office use. From desktop sensors to employee “wearables”, the office is going “smarter” more connected and is affecting how the office is designed. Companies that develop such smart technologies have created applications that monitor how employees move, interact, speak and perform based on the environment.
The results are then analysed to see how the office environment affects productivity and corrected when necessary.
The physical and psychological well-being of employees will be a priority
This year, designing for physical and psychological health and wellness will be a major priority—with mental well-being on top of the physical. A study conducted recently discovered that more than half of employees in corporate settings feel more motivated and inspired to work and recommend their company to others if their mental well-being is taken care for.
Well-being will also be a factor used in designing work spaces
Person-to-person interaction and friendships with co-workers contribute to a healthy attitude towards work. Places like pantries or break out rooms, where staff can eat together or relax, will become more crucial in work-place design this year. Aside from that, it is also important that the staff have some level of personal privacy and have a chance to concentrate. Overcrowded offices with no privacy may negatively affect mental well-being.
The rise of nature inspired design
A growing trend in the past few years is bringing nature elements to the workplace. Studies have shown the positive effects on employees that result from putting plant, natural lighting, and views of nature in the office. Having natural elements in the office may boost productivity by almost 10% and well-being by almost 15%.
This year, the trend will go beyond the simple additions of plants on spaces and will even incorporate a more “natural look” in architecture, design and furniture.