These are stirring times for office furniture. The world is progressing, and people’s needs when it comes to desks, seating and so on are changing too. With this in mind, below are just some of the emerging trends that are likely to impact on office furniture.
Floating around the office
Traditionally, office workers were tied to specific desks (not literally of course - or at least we hope!). This was seen as the most practical and efficient use of space. Also, it meant people could personalise their workstations with everything from their own stationery to pictures of the family guinea pig.
However, this orthodoxy is being challenged. Increasingly, experts are advocating a freer approach whereby employees can essentially float around the office, choosing workstations that suit their needs at any given time. They might start their days at desks working on their own and move to communal, brainstorming areas later on, for example. A typical office of the future may have zones including restaurants, coffee bars, meeting spaces, breakout areas and private rooms where people can get on with their tasks.
Increased home working is another key trend. Companies are switching onto the benefits of letting their staff operate remotely. This can save them office space and, when done well, it can boost productivity.
In some cases, firms are providing good quality furniture to their workers to help ensure they are able to function properly at home.
As well as working from their houses and flats, more and more people are setting up shop in local hubs. These communal working areas are a response to the potential isolation of working alone at home. They can also provide people with an opportunity to network, which is especially handy for freelancers and business start-ups.
Greater choice over technology
It’s hard to imagine life these days without all our gadgets by our side. What would you do if one day you awoke to find your computer, tablet and smartphone had disappeared? We know what we’d do, and that’s panic!
As workers become ever more dependent on technology, there is a trend towards giving them a greater say over the devices they use. Many people are still simply plonked in front of PCs and told to get on with their tasks, but over coming years this is likely to change.
More unusual furniture
There will always be a place for comfy chairs that promote good posture, but alongside these products, other objects may be commonplace in the office of the future. Already, some companies are providing their personnel with more informal items like beanbags as a supplement to traditional seating.
A number of companies are also embracing the idea that exercise can help to stimulate the mind. By encouraging their workers to use exercise balls, static bikes or simply to stand while getting on with their work, they hope to boost productivity. It remains to be seen whether this will catch on or not!
Author Bio - This article was written by Carly Lincoln, who is known in the furniture industry for her specialist knowledge. She researches her articles on various sites, including www.furniture-work.co.uk/