The physical structure and concept of office space have changed drastically over the years. Through various research efforts around the world about the relationship of office settings with productivity, more and more businesses and companies are switching their dull, cramped office setup with brighter, more open areas for collaboration and communication.
These changes in the landscape of modern offices have given birth to more and more innovations — most of which came from the inspired and motivated individuals that have benefitted from the new and improved spaces in their offices. Office workers are happier, more productive, and more creative in their work due to the modernized design of their offices.
Whether you are a team leader in charge of redesigning your office or just someone who works from home and wants a new perspective in your home office, continue reading to get inspiration and know-how to create a modernized and work-friendly office.
How a Modernized Office Should Look and Feel
1. Supports the Three C’s of Business
Creativity, collaboration, and communication are the so-called 3 C’s of businesses. Especially in an office where multiple people share a space, these elements ensure maximum healthy productivity.
Today’s offices should promote these three C’s for everyone’s benefit. An excellent way to do so is to rearrange the layout of desks and chairs and eliminate traditional cubicles that separate one from another.
Creativity can be achieved through a well-lit and well-designed office interior. Constant collaboration and communication between colleagues also result in bursts of inspiration.
2. Relaxed But Still Conducive to Productivity
One must be under just the right amount of stress to be productive. This is because pressure can either be good or bad. When stress is good, one is motivated to do better. When stress is bad, it can hinder one’s mental and emotional capacity to work.
Modern offices should be designed so that it is relaxing to be in, but not too relaxing that it induces sleep. The palette you use in the interior should be a combination of warm (but not too warm) and cool, soothing hues like greens, blues, soft yellow, and browns.
Cushion couches, aesthetically pleasing design artifacts, and natural light coming from windows are among the things that can make a relaxing but productive office setup.
3. Welcomes Both Collaboration and Isolated Concentration
Big ideas can come from big groups of people working together to achieve a common goal. This is why most modern offices make do without cubicles that restrict communication and collaboration.
However, there is also a need for team members to be able to do work by themselves. They will need intense concentration if they are given tasks that are only offered to an individual.
While open spaces where colleagues can exchange ideas are necessary, it is also good to retain and improve areas where people can work alone. For instance, setting up a particular room for deep work concentration can help your employees refine their ideas and produce better results.
4. Professionally Designed
Even for offices that don’t usually receive clients, there are times when visitors need to be entertained. You don’t want outsiders to have the wrong impression and think your office is chaotic and a mess.
Modern offices should be designed professionally. This means there has to be a formal vibe in your office that balances the relaxing, comfortable, and stimulating atmosphere that your setup gives.
You can separate employee areas from reception and lounge areas and make them a tad bit neater and less cluttered. Employee spaces are, of course, expected to be a mess at times due to ongoing work. However, visitors or client areas should always be well-maintained not to repulse anyone in for a visit.
5. Features Biophilic Design
Plants are all the rage these times in interior design. It is a crucial element in Biophilic design, which is anchored on the belief that humans are inherently connected with nature. Therefore, being with nature can result in positive improvements in people.
As it is probably impractical and unethical to set up an office deep in the heart of nature, you can bring nature to your workspace by adding plants to interior design.
Other things you can do to reconnect with mother nature include:
- Using wood and stone materials in office fixtures like tables and floors
- Enabling natural light to pass through the windows
- Installing paintings or pictures that depict any scenery in the natural world
Redesigning Your Office Space
Rethink Your Office Layout
As previously mentioned, modernized offices are now more open without the cubicles getting in the way of office workers to see each other and work together. You can still keep private rooms for higher-ups in particular. Still, for team members, a more expansive unrestricted space would probably be more beneficial.
Make spaces for different functions such as collaborations, individual workrooms, socialization, and rest.
Install Active Furniture
A typical desk-and-chair setup is boring, not to mention, they promote strained necks and backs at the end of the day. Selecting furniture for your office is not only about the visual appeal but the functionality.
Choose comfortable furniture designs like ergonomic tables and chairs, couches and sofa for comfortable sitting during break times, and maybe some massage chairs if there is enough space in your office.
You will also benefit if your chosen furniture is light enough to be carried around. Permit your employees to move things around according to what suits them as a team.
Mind the Noise
Sensitivity to noise is a thing that can distract many office workers trying to do their job. If your office is in a bustling city near roads and construction sites, managing the noise can be a problem.
Installing sound-proof wall panels and vinyl floorings is suitable for large-scale renovations. However, suppose you only plan to redesign and not to renovate. In that case, you can make a switch in other things found in your office.
Noise from inside the office can also be a distraction. To avoid unnecessary sounds, opt for soft furniture. Invest in noise-canceling headphones and quiet keyboards.
Internet Connection Everywhere
A modernized office is a smart office. Technology is essential to businesses these days. Wi-Fi, in particular, is helpful in many areas of businesses, not only in communication.
Ensure that Wi-Fi connection is available everywhere in your office — even the pantry. This can allow office workers to be able to work anytime, anywhere inside the office.
Invest in Wireless Tools
Cables and cords are unsightly and messy, especially when all tangled up. Investing in wireless digital tools like wireless chargers, Bluetooth devices, and tablets is the way to go for a neater, more flexible workspace.
If wires cannot be avoided, there are ways to keep them orderly, or better yet — hidden.
Aside from wireless tools, a highly modernized office also uses voice controllers to operate lighting, speakers, and the likes.
Engage in Collaborative and Efficient Software
Yes, collaboration in person is more fun and genuine. However, there are times (like our times) where distance is valued. Investing in collaborative software that allows your team members to work together virtually is a smart move in today’s society.
There is also plenty of useful software not only for interaction but also for other purposes like storing and organizing data and monitoring progress in team projects and individual tasks.
Welcome All Types of Devices
People can have different levels of productivity depending on what device they use for work. Some thrive in using laptops, while others are more comfortable with desktops. Some people would rather move around more freely and work with their tablets or mobile phones.
Whatever it is, a modernized office is home to a wide variety of digital tools that enables work to flow smoothly. Your choice of furniture must support each device of choice.
Your employees must be able to work in the most productive manner they can. Whether this means sitting down, standing up, walking around until a bright idea comes to them, your office must be able to support this.
Allot enough sitting spaces for all of your employees. Ensure that the floors are always clean in case an employee decides that sitting on the floor is the best way to work.
You can also get standing desks for employees to use. Allow employees to change their working positions as they please throughout the day.
Have Wellness Facilities
Pantries and resting areas are a must if you want your employees to work healthily and happily. When your employees are burned out, it hinders their ability to produce the work you expect of them.
Start with stocking your pantry with simple drink and snack selections like teas and cookies. Stock up on healthy food and not junk foods. Allot a space for employees to take a quick power nap, like a corner with a massage chair waiting to be filled up with a tired, aching body.
For centuries, employees have been trained to work in a closed, private cubicle space. An open, highly engaging space might be shocking and confusing to work on, especially for office workers on the field for a long time.
As a team leader, you should encourage your members to work differently, like their new office space. Give them a quick tour of the newly redesigned office and show them how to work and take a break in every area. Tell them they can work anywhere they please inside the office and let them know you hope they can work healthily and happily.
As you read along, you probably thought of more ideas to try on for your redesigning office project. If you are working alongside others in an office, make sure to work strategically and on schedule so that you won’t disrupt your co-workers. Consider also their suggestions as you all are the ones who will benefit from the project.
Whether you are working with a team or alone on the redesigning, remember it’s okay to take your time. Work slowly but surely, covering one part at a time until you have finished every area of your office space.
After days of hard work, reward yourself for a job well done and continue working happily and productively in your now-modernized office.