January 9, 2016

4 Office Design Trends to Watch for in 2016

You know what they say – flashy trends may come and go, but quality designs last a lifetime. While we wholeheartedly agree with this statement, we also acknowledge that even our most cherished designs were at one point or another “the latest and greatest.”
Looking ahead to 2016, we suspect many current office design trends will continue to gain steam, crossing over into “classic territory.” Here’s what we expect to be seeing more of in the coming year:
Openoffice Nation
Bench-style desks. Open workstations. Breakout spaces –– all have been touted as behemoths of enhanced creativity, cost savings and increased productivity. Conversely, collaborative office spaces have received a fair amount of negative press since their inception; mostly due to employees being switched from traditional spaces without proper preparation and companies whose existing culture simply didn’t support such a dramatic change in infrastructure.
Despite the controversy, employers from Silicon Valley to Brooklyn continue to move forward with open office plans, hoping they can learn from mistakes made by early adopters. One of the reasons for the continuing surge will be the increasing number of Millennials (adults ages 18 to 34) in the workspace.
According to a 2015 analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data, the generation has surpassed Generation X to become America’s largest age group in the workforce. The group has consistently shown a preference for collaborative workspaces.
Putting On The Ritz
Another want that has become a normal part of job-seeking lists is “work-life balance.” As such, attracting top candidates with lifestyle amenities will become more common in 2016. As the economy continues to improve, the market will favor passive and active job seekers alike.
Savvy employers will be ahead of the curve, offering features such as lounges, outdoor spaces and even gourmet food options to attract and retain the best talent. By making work an enjoyable place to be, these employers can expect to experience less absenteeism and more “getting stuff done.”
Enhanced Tech Experiences
When was the last time you tried to complete a full day’s work without Internet access? Such blips in technology are simply no longer tolerated by today’s biggest companies. As such, firms will continue to design infrastructures that meet stringent technology requirements.
That means prioritizing adequate bandwidth, high performance telecommunications and convenient electronic access points. Also expect to see more “smart building features” that allow for better security and resource management.
Green Looks Good
As technology continues to improve, so does energy efficiency. Employers will increasingly show preference to leasing LEED certified spaces, viewing energy conservation as both cost saving and good image management. Things like energy efficient lighting, good air quality and green construction will continue to be prioritized. As more manufacturers continue to offer energy efficient materials and products, expect these types of “perks” to become the norm.
As you can see, employee flexibility, group collaboration and overall efficiency will be at the forefront of design in the coming year. Pretty soon the only boring-looking cubicle farms we see will be in the movies. Want to learn how you can incorporate the above trends into your next office?
Not sure where to start? for a free consultation.