Work culture has advanced immensely from the days when corporate offices were a new phenomenon. Years of seeing the results of office life on people’s overall well-being has sparked many new developments in office design. Interior designers, as well as designers for office furniture manufacturers, have proven to be truly creative in their design solutions. Whether designers are helping a startup company workspace function better, or planning an entire office building for a Fortune 500 company, these 10 office design ideas and trends work in a great variety of interior design projects.
1) Open Floor Plans
Less walls is a beautiful sight to see in modern office design. Creating more views across multiple spaces encourages collaboration, allows for more accessible changes in the floor plan when necessary, and is cheaper to design because fewer dividing walls need to be constructed. Overall, it is a move to improve the health of employees. An open floor plan also makes it easy to get around, thus encouraging people to move more frequently.
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2) The Psychology of Color
The use of psychology and color design together is a very popular trend in contemporary office design now. Colors have been shown to have certain effects on people, without them even consciously knowing or understanding it.
For example, orange makes people feel more energetic because it is reminiscent of things like the summer sun and fresh, ripe oranges. Greens, yellows, and blues are also commonly seen in modern office design, too!
3) Touches of Home
Working environments are no longer sterile and uninviting if they aim to keep employees fully engaged. Touches of home help everyone to relax and work in a calm manner with a feeling of less pressure. Cushy seats gathered around a table make brainstorming new ideas with coworkers more fun and inviting. Kitchens
4) Multipurpose Spaces
Collaboration and versatility help the modern office function well. Office design that serves multiple purposes assists in getting the job done well. It can efficiently keep up with the fast paced environment and demands of today.
One area can serve as a space for two co-workers to comfortably work together, as a place to take a mental break, and as a place to hold a small and informal department meeting just by placing a few seats or couches around a table, with some sense of privacy such as a rug to define the space, or a divider like a green wall between it and the next space.
Also, in small office interior design, every square inch counts. Areas that can serve as both a meeting space, a kickback area, and even a place to relax during lunch allow smaller offices the luxury feel of having more room.
5) Modern Integrations in Furniture
Furniture that caters to everyday life makes working easier. Being connected to energy and internet keeps us all sane, as well as productive, but it isn’t always pretty. Desks and work areas that successfully and seamlessly integrate technology while hiding how unbecoming it is have a form that serve a big purpose. Cords can be both ugly and sometimes hazardous. If you can’t find an outlet near your workspace, you resort to stretching cords as far as they need to go. Furniture companies specializing in modern office design add outlets into the tables and funnel the cords away in a safe and discreet manner so that employees can stick to finding solutions for their work tasks, not for their computer battery.
6) Natural Elements
Biophilic design is a discipline that focuses on incorporating natural elements into the built environment, and for good reason. Designers can’t replicate natural sunlight in interiors. However, they can decorate with plants, which brings a natural element inside. Plants have been shown to increase productivity and make a workplace more appealing, thus attracting more employees to the company. Plants also help to clean and purify the indoor air in addition to lowering stress.
Aside from living plants, elements like wood paneling on the walls and ceiling, stone accents, water features, and fireplaces all add a touch of nature that is both mesmerizing and tranquil.
7) Lounge Areas
Lounging may sound counterproductive to getting work done, but comfort plays a major role in creativity. A place to kick your feet up and brainstorm ideas for a project is just what the mind and body need! Lounge areas can also encourage people to rise early to have a cup of coffee and relax in the office before they start their work day, or to stick around during their lunch break because they can actually get comfortable at work.
8) Intentional Way-finding
Offices of the 1970s-1990s packed as much as they could into an office. People seemed like an afterthought. This method made it difficult to know exactly where you were within a building. Staff members will often find themselves turned around in long, blank corridors. A long hallway perforated by doors here and there is neither inviting nor easy to find the room you need. Opening up floor plans made finding one’s way around an office easier. Design elements that integrate way-finding tools make it easier and less stressful to get around the office. The office above uses orange pipes as both a decorative element and as an inherent pathway.
9) Window Views For Everyone
Having access to an office with a window used to be a luxury gained by just a few. Everyone else had to succumb to dreary artificial lights and being confined all day long. Taking away the correlation of work title hierarchy and quality of workspace has created a less mentally draining and more beautiful work environment in modern office design. The new model has flipped the old model around and placing top exclusive offices in the center of the floor plan. Translucent or transparent walls encompassing central rooms allow the light into their workspace. Now, everyday workers are exposed to light and views to the outdoors. That is very necessary for healthy and engaged employees.
10) Encouraging Activeness
So far, we’ve seen how colors and natural elements make for healthier people in the workplace. Offices are taking that to the next level by making exercise easily accessible for their employees. Employees no longer have to purchase a gym membership and driving to and from the gym. They don’t even have to worry about when they’ll actually have time to workout. Instead, they can use the on-site gym before, after, or during work.
Another modern office design trend that is also ergonomically satisfying is a standing desk. Employees can opt to stand up to work, or adjust the desk to be able to sit. It helps them move around and stay active during the day, instead of staying seated, which is proven to not be very healthy without some form of regular accompanying exercise.
The main design inspiration for any office these day are the people who will be working there. Catering to their needs, appealing to their senses, and making it a great user experience for employees is what will truly define contemporary office design. Luckily, interior designers are able to take the elements that make an office function well and arrange them in an aesthetically pleasing way. If you need help with arranging your office design, schedule a Free Office Interior Design Consultation today!