There’s never been a more exciting time to design office interiors, creating bespoke environments and supporting new expressions of workplace culture.
Over the past five years there’s been a shift in workplace design as clients have increasingly moved away from focusing purely on space and how to utilise it. It’s now about figuring out what staff actually need to get the job done.
Offices in 2018 will be created with flexibility and domestic design in mind, blurring the divide between home and work space. We’ve seen a noticeable shift away from traditional corporate spaces by using elements that mimic the ‘feel’ of more informal settings. Velvet, smoked glass, marble and copper all made their way into workplaces in 2017 and are still very much on trend, as is experimenting with fabrics, texture and colour.
This approach is about comfort and creating a stress-free environment where people feel at ease. In 2018 bosses will also start to consider how using co-working spaces or a second smaller office may supplement their existing offering to employees – particularly for those who could have an easier commute to a different location.
The emergence of biophilic design has played a huge part in introducing green areas into offices, adding to the growing importance of health and wellbeing which became really topical last year. With the launch of a number of wellness accreditations, we expect that this trend will continue but it’ll be medium-sized companies, not just corporates who look at developing health and wellness strategies. Employers can no longer only pay lip service to staff wellbeing, and this opens wonderful opportunities for transforming your physical space. We’ve already seen an upward trend in incorporating games rooms, yoga studios and retreats within the office – and let’s not forget how this helps attract and retain talent.
Technology is pushing forward the requirement for unconventional work spaces through providing staff with more choice of where and how to work. Being able to pick up and work anywhere in the office, as seamlessly as you would at your desk, is a huge advantage.
The challenge for designers now is to create space-efficient offices which include areas to relax, collaborate and focus – and everything in between! We need to focus on creating memorable user experiences so that employees can not only be inspired, productive and happy; they can fall in love with their offices again.