What to Expect in 2020: Office Design Trends in the New Year
Offices are always changing, and today’s modern office looks a lot different from the white-and-beige cubicle farms of 50 years ago. In recent years, forward-thinking office managers have tried to attract top talent by encouraging employee health and wellness and fostering a sense of community at work. These operational goals have influenced not just how offices are managed but also how they are designed. And each year, interior designers work to develop new trends that create more comfortable and more efficient work environments.
In 2020, the focus remains on employee wellbeing, with designers and managers eyeing improved strategies and new approaches to foster wellness in the office.
5 Office Trends to Foster Employee Wellbeing
1. Designing the Office for Holistic Wellness
Facility managers are starting to realize that fostering employee wellness means more than offering healthy snacks and fitness incentives. Now, managers are taking a holistic approach to wellbeing and moving beyond physical health to consider the minds, bodies, and spirits of workers.
Offices don’t necessarily need to designate a space for meditation or yoga. However, managers should consider how certain design elements like lighting, materials, colors, and spatial relationships influence how workers feel throughout the day.
2. Collaboration Moves Beyond the Conference Room
Studies into how employees work have shown that teams and individuals need more places to sit and meet besides large conference rooms. These smaller collaboration areas need to be easily reconfigurable so they can fit the needs of all teams and users. Collaboration areas should include features like screens that any laptop can hook up to, whiteboards that can slide out of the way when not in use, and chairs that can move around depending on the number of people and type of meeting.
Smaller, customizable meeting places are more conducive to creativity and brainstorming than large conference rooms, where team members may feel intimidated or isolated. Collaborative areas should foster communication and socialization while still keeping the team on track.
3. Sustainable Means Reconfigurable
In years past, sustainability trends in the office furniture industry centered around creating environmentally friendly products that meet LEED, BIFMA, and other sustainability standards. Today, the industry’s sustainability movement is expanding to include not only sustainable end products but sustainable practices and processes as well. After all, a sustainable end product doesn’t matter much if the manufacturing process used to create that product harms the environment.
The latest push in sustainable design: durable furniture that companies can reconfigure and repurpose. Today’s offices need to adapt to the needs of the employees and the organization as a whole. By creating furniture that workers can use in a multitude of spaces and a variety of ways, companies can easily reconfigure and repurpose existing furniture instead of tossing it out and buying brand-new pieces.
4. Functional Furniture is Smart Furniture
Good design involves more than just creating a table or chair that’s aesthetically pleasing. The value of design comes from both how a piece looks and how it performs. In most situations, office furniture isn’t a decoration — it serves an essential function.
The latest trend for 2020 involves improving the functionality of furniture by incorporating technology in ways that help employees stay more creative, active, and productive. How? Smarter ergonomics.
Chairs with smart ergonomics can adjust to your body automatically, and smart tables can be programmed and adjusted for each user’s preferences, even when connected to other desks.
5. Customization is King
In today’s office furniture industry, customization is king. There is no one-size-fits-all desk that works for every employee — unless that desk is customizable.
True customization extends beyond adjustability and ergonomics. New customizable desks allow users to personalize their workspace to make it truly their own. Users can adjust these desks to fit physical requirements, outfit the desks based on organizational needs, and even modify the appearance of the work surface and desk frame to match the user’s preferences.
Foster Workplace Wellbeing With ZGO Solutions
Have you found the right balance between technology and simplicity, productivity and design? At ZGO Solutions, we develop ergonomic desk frames with Smart technology that can help employees work both comfortably and productively. Contact us to learn more.
Koschmann, M. & White, J. The new landscape of work. Herman Miller Living Office. Retrieved from https://www.hermanmiller.com/solutions/living-office/magazine/the-new-landscape-of-work/
Steelcase Global Design Studio. (5 December, 2019). Wellbeing: Core to 2020 office design implications. Steelcase Research. Retrieved from https://www.steelcase.com/research/articles/topics/workplace/wellbeing-core-2020-office-design-implications/
Sterkenberg, Z. (13 November, 2019). Office futures: The office design trends of 2020. Ambius. Retrieved from https://www.ambius.com/blog/2020-office-design-trends/