Innovative, modern design choices that put employee needs first are becoming integral to continued company growth and success. The reasons for investing in great office design are numerous, and powerful.
So, what is it that makes a successful office design? How can your company benefit from investment in fit out?
Here are five great design ideas for the modern office that showcase the power of an updated workspace.
BIG, BOLD AND BEAUTIFUL
Gone are the days of drab, mundane and monotonous office spaces.
In 2019, a vibrant office, replete with bold, eye-catching design choices, is a great way of expressing company personality and individuality.
In their office fit out project in 2018, SLG wanted a space that not only payed homage to its Cheltenham roots, but that captivated and inspired employees and clients alike, creating an unforgettable working environment.
To achieve the aesthetic, the office incorporates several striking contrasts in terms of material and colour; the office space is full of on-trend exposed concrete and metal, creating an urban, industrial feel, but is also layered with exquisite, plush rugs and delicate cushion patterning.
Perhaps most visually striking is the ‘orange box’ – a room in the middle of the office surrounded floor-to-ceiling with transparent orange Perspex, creating a visual focal point that feels at once both profoundly modern and of-the-moment, and yet also iconic and timeless.
The 'orange box' at SLG
THE POWER OF THE BRAND
Visual impact can be an important facet of designing an office with individuality and personality, but many of the most striking and impressive modern offices seamlessly combine aesthetic with clear brand alignment.
As part of the Ladbrokes project, Modus graphic designers had the opportunity to create hand-crafted graphics using spray paint, creating a playful-yet-polished interior that tied together the brand identity, with its sporting heritage, and the influence of the London 2012 Olympics.
‘In order to give the best final result, the Graphic Design team and I went on-site to hand spray the main graffiti wall ourselves’, said Madyson Laurent, Head of Graphic Design at Modus Workspace. ‘It was fantastic for our team to be able to provide this additional value to Ladbrokes and we hope they love it as much as we do’.
The team also installed Olympic-grade running track encircling the office, further evoking Ladbrokes’ intrinsic link to the sporting world.
Running track encircles meeting rooms at Ladbrokes
AGILITY AND FLUIDITY
The trend of remote working is officially a thing of the past. Employees are coming back to the workplace with raised expectations as to how their day-to-day needs will be met, and how the office will accommodate these needs.
Agile working is becoming a key trend for modern offices. With the needs of the employee at the forefront, office spaces are now incorporating innovative ideas in terms of desk design, space saving solutions and room layouts, all with a view towards maximising productivity.
Features of the agile modern office include meeting booths that strip meetings of unnecessary formality and allow for fluid, dynamic collaboration. Desks with adjustable height bring employees both mental and physical benefits; open-plan, non-fixed seating work stations encourage innovation and collaboration in a loose, informal setting.
Agile workstations at Spaces
IN TOUCH WITH NATURE
Biophilia – our innate affinity for nature – is becoming an ever-more important part of office design, improving employee productivity and happiness while also decreasing energy costs.
In a 2010 study by the University of Technology, Sydney, the introduction of plants led to a 37% fall in reported tension and anxiety, a 58% drop in depression or dejection, a 44% decrease in anger and hostility, and a 38% reduction in fatigue by students and staff.
Consider the addition of a ‘living wall’ to enliven an office space, helping employees feel more connected to nature, and more productive as a result.
A 'living ceiling' at Skyscanner
WELLNESS AT WORK
Employee wellbeing is undeniably a major facet of the modern workplace, and for good reason.
When employees are stressed, tired or otherwise disengaged, absenteeism, workplace accidents and errors go up, according to a study by the Gallup Organization.
Giving employees spaces to recuperate, refresh and revitalize themselves away from the workstation is important for employee happiness, productivity, and business success.
These spaces can take a number of forms – breakout spaces, for example, are becoming a major office trend, with informal kitchen or lounge areas becoming staples of the modern workplace.
For Modus’s Mitie project, ‘quiet pods’ were incorporated into the workspace, giving employees a personal, private space to rest, reflect and reinvigorate themselves during the day, as well as adding significant aesthetic value to the space.
Quiet pods at Mitie
Ultimately, the secret to achieving aspirational office design involves a combination of innovative ideas, powerful branding, fluidity and a little bit of nature throughout.