The past couple of years have been a rollercoaster for the office design industry. Now that employees are returning to the office setting, it may be time for a redesign of your office space. From sustainability to noise reduction, let’s dive into the top 4 office design trends we’re seeing pop up in the greater Boston area.
An emphasis on Eco style and sustainability
Sustainability has become a top priority for employers and employees alike. Since the pandemic, we’ve grown increasingly aware of our impact on the environment and how we can decrease our carbon footprint. Aside from choosing environmentally friendly cleaning products and adding recycle bins to the kitchen, there are several design elements that also promote sustainability.
The most popular sustainability and eco style trend in the office is biophilic design. This concept focuses on incorporating elements of nature throughout your office space through natural materials like wood or bamboo, water, glass, stone, and plants. You can include this design trend in your office space by adding living walls, bamboo desks, fish tanks, and natural textures and patterns in furniture. You can even practice reusing and recycling in design and shop for vintage or second hand pieces, wooden planks, and glass bottles.
A major element to eco style and biophilic design is a deeper focus on resource saving. That means increasing natural light, improving air quality, and saving energy throughout the space is vital. Employers can improve their space and reduce energy waste by:
Adding windows to increase natural light
Using LED lights where natural light isn’t prevalent
Implementing an office grade air purification system
Installing carpets, curtains, and rugs to promote insulation
With every design decision, focus on the environment and pay extra attention to the materials you use, how often you use them, and how they were made.
A priority for flexible, open spaces
Open and co-working spaces aren’t anything new to the office design industry. Even with the surge of the pandemic, open office spaces are still very much alive. However for 2022, open concept floor plans won’t be completely dominating office spaces—it’s time to make room for pod-style design.
Pod-style layouts allow employees to enjoy private spots or areas where they can work or mingle on their own time. Think of this layout as a multi-tasking meeting space. Pod areas allow for employees to make phone calls, participate in video conferences, and work independently or collaboratively without interrupting other employees.
Pod-style layouts have been shown to:
Boost productivity and concentration
Reduce excess noise levels
Lower stress levels
While pod-style office layouts have many benefits, this doesn’t mean that employers should eliminate open spaces entirely—it’s all about balance. Having the option to work in an open area and a pod-style environment gives employees the freedom and flexibility they need to succeed.
Shop for multiple pod options at our quick ship store here.
Pod-areas also make it easier to create a desired ‘third place’ within an office space. The third place is an area within the office that encourages social interaction with employees. It’s not for meetings, it’s an area where your employees feel comfortable coming together and socializing.
A color palette of neutrals, but with a twist
It’s a fact that neutrals never go out of style. However, neutral color pallets are often seen as boring or lifeless. Think of how many times you’ve stepped into an office space with gray carpet, medium gray washed walls, and tan desks. It’s probably too many to count! That's going to change for 2022.
Off-whites, tans, beiges, and colors with a warm and earthy undertone will dominate Boston’s office landscape. The great thing about these neutral color pallets is that they provide the perfect base to add flashes of color.
Let’s say that your main brand color is a beautiful rich green. Of course you can’t paint the entire office that color or install green carpeting, that’s a recipe for a headache. However, adding green accents to the office through furniture, decor, or other design elements with a main neutral color palette creates an on brand space that your employees enjoy coming back to everyday.
Focus on sound reduction and acoustics
Excess noise is one of the most common complaints by employees in corporate office settings. In fact 53% of employees say that workplace noise harms their productivity and it takes nearly 25 minutes for employees to refocus after they’ve been distracted. That’s a lot of wasted time! Lucky for you, there are several things employers can do to reduce noise and distractions in the office.
Flooring is a major culprit for noise disturbances. If your office’s flooring surface is concrete or ceramic, consider swapping it out for carpet, engineered hardwood, or LVT flooring. The maintenance is about the same and your employees will appreciate the extra quiet.
Pods also heavily decrease throughout the office. Giving employees and enclosed space to have meetings or take phone calls lowers the distraction level for the other employees throughout the office. Furniture, partitions, and filing cabinets also impact the acoustics with an office space.
Pro tip: Plants have also proven effective in reducing noise levels in office settings combining two trends: biophilic design and acoustics.
Take the guesswork out of design
When it comes to designing your office space in Boston, the options can be overwhelming. That’s where the team at Furngully comes in to put your mind at ease. We take care of everything from design to installation. Schedule a consultation with our team today.