You never know where a good hash tag will take you. Our top five list of what’s trending in #OfficeDesign is full of surprises, contradictions and common sense advice.
5 Things Trending in Office Design for 2015
Trend #1: Confusion by design
Procore Technologies in California took everyone’s mind off the drought in that state when Wired reported that the company had asked for an office design to deliberately confuse its employees.
Eric Corbett, owner of Kingdom Industry who designed the new HQ, said it was “expressly to make workers get and feel lost, because, as neuroscience shows, disorientation keeps people alert and expecting the unexpected.”
Trend #2: Planning to avoid confusion
Chicago Creative Space looked at Microsoft, Young & Rubicam, and ESPN to help others determine how those three companies avoided “opening the Pandora’s box of poor-planning.”
The secrets of success: putting workplace culture first.
The companies each have a unique way of interpreting how its culture is supported by workspace. Microsoft looks at “Hives” of workers to determine their function-driven space needs. Young & Rubicam strikes a balance between community spaces for creative people to brainstorm and bounce ideas off each other and quiet spaces for bringing those ideas to fruition. ESPN keeps its focus on bringing the brand to life through the spaces of the groups who inhabit them.
Trend #3: Planning essentials
What are “check list” elements you need to plan your office design layout? According to Business Zone there are five key things to do before you begin:
- Carry out a full workplace appraisal to see what you have, what you want to keep, what you want to re-use or re-purpose and what you need to obtain.
- Survey your building to make sure it still meets your current and future plans and needs.
- Create a detailed design brief to communicate your vision in its entirety.
- Decide on a strict budget and stick to it!
- Put your team together so that everyone has a stake in the newly designed space.
Trend #4: Nature before technology
The elements that people care most about in their living spaces, will be the elements they care about most in their work spaces says Zeppelin Development principal Kyle Zeppelin.
According to Zeppelin, the office of the future will be all about nature rather than technology.
“Rather than high-tech features, there’s an emphasis on natural elements—fresh air, spaces that open up to landscape, thoughtful finishes, and timeless, clean design,” Zeppelin says.
Trend #5: Use design to combat noise
The drone of the air conditioner or heating system, construction outside your window, chattering coming from the meeting room next door: all of these annoyances can reduce employee productivity.
Noise reduction, says the UK’s Planned Office Interiors, can be accomplished with tools and furniture. Screens can be added to surround or section off workspaces while plants and potted trees can change the acoustics of open and collective spaces.
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