Like many interiors, the office has since evolved from simply being a room with a row of desks and chairs to a more sophisticated interior lined up with the latest in furniture innovation and task oriented pieces. Perhaps what makes the modern office interior different from the offices of yesteryear is the single notion that it incorporates a particular style, color and is more employee oriented than before.
To simplify the equation, the modern office interior has a personality of its own that adheres to the company’s ideals and values as well as the specifications of every satisfied employee’s needs and requirements. And with today’s ever growing innovative trends, it’s no surprise why slowly, those who work in an office actually look forward to coming to work as they no longer feel pressured or tired. And that is the ultimate goal of every modern office; to make its workers and employees feel comfortable and productive.
Here are some of the most innovative office interior design trends that you can try in your own office.
1. SPACE ALLOCATION
Admit it. The first thing that you want to tackle is the space allocation. You’re probably afraid of having either rows of cubicles or desks fill up the entire space. That’s usually the standard office. But since this is a new office interior design, how about trying out a more practical and productive approach to setting up your space.
The key to this is first recognizing how many employees will be working in this space. Back then, there would be at least two departments in one space with each department having an allocated section for its employee. Nowadays, departments and divisions have their own room, so this allows for the office space to be a bit more airy and less cramped than before. Each department would have an average of 14-20 employees, therefore you can provide more than enough space for each employee.
As much as possible, do away with partitions and cubicles. Another trend in modern offices is that fact that employees can openly communicate with one another without feeling completely cut off from everyone else. Instead, you can have drawer cabinets serve as both your division and file storage.
If the space allows it, provide an area where they can unwind or have lunch together. This fosters a sense of camaraderie and ease within your employees, thereby increasing productivity in your company. This trend can be seen in open warehouse floors and old building floors with the walls knocked down and tall ceilings that provide ample natural light.
2. INNOVATIVE MATERIALS
When it comes to materials for the office interior design, you can never go wrong with wooden furniture. There is an unspoken belief that owning wooden furniture is an indicative sign of wisdom and professionalism. Key values that any company aims to foster. But let’s face it. Wooden furniture has become something of a luxury and with that comes a hefty price tag and an even heftier maintenance routine, which often takes time. Time that is usually spent in working on various papers and tasks.
As such, you will need materials that are somewhat similar in look and feel, which provides you and your working space a more manageable and practical style. If you find wooden furniture pricey, you can opt for furniture made from melamine or laminate boards. This material not only comes in various shades and colors, but because of its pressed boards, it makes for easy cleaning and endless customizable possibilities.
Leather upholstered chairs are good as well, especially since they are designed to withstand wear and tear and depending on the overall finish, is firm and sturdy. The drawback of leather chairs however is that overtime and especially if it is exposed to direct sunlight, the leather will slowly begin to crack and peel. A good alternative to this is opting for fabric upholstered chairs. If fabric isn’t your cup of tea, you can also go for molded polyurethane chairs with caster wheels. The interesting thing about polyurethane chairs is that , like the laminated boards, they come in a wide variety of designs and are manufactured in large quantities; making it the best option for spaces that require more than one style of chair.
Metals such as steel and aluminum are slowly making its comeback to the office design as they are considered timeless materials; especially in file cabinets, drawers, lockers and even computer cabinets.
3. COLOR SCHEMES
When it comes to the office, it is safe to say that most employees will be spending at least 8 hours sitting and working at their desk or station. While they will be preoccupied with work, one must admit that in the long run, they would feel drained since their work environment lacks a certain inspiring factor.
Modern office interior design relies heavily on the use of color to brighten the overall working space and improve the mood of the employees in the room. And while the neutral color palette of white, gray, black and browns are still favored by some, most office interiors are now adopting a brighter and engaging color scheme. Colors such as blues, greens, and oranges and occasionally red are slowly becoming popular choices of color as they add a certain amount of personality to an otherwise monotonous interior.
- Blues tend to evoke a sense of trust and reliability as well as a calming and cooling effect. This can be seen in financial company logos, banks and even electronic brands such as Dell and HP. If your office has a conference room, place the blue color in a singular wall where it can often be looked at. You can set it as an accent wall or even where your screen or whiteboard is situated at. You can also put the color in your working space so as to calm and relax your employees when they work.
- Another color that is making its mark is taupe, which is a gray brown color that gives off a modern yet elegant look. You can see this in many modern interiors as a means to counterbalance the abundant use of white and gray and even wood. Not only does it give off a clean and polished look, it is slowly becoming one of the most versatile colors in any color palette.
- Try playing around with light pastels and light colors and you will find that it not only brightens and livens up your office, it will actually make your employees feel more enthusiastic and positive.
4. DECORATIVE ELEMENTS
This is where one’s originality comes into play. Even if it’s an office, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a little decoration here and there. An office must also feel like home with a few minor differences. Since you have your furniture in place, it’s time to put a little bit of practical décor to tie it all together.
Just because it’s an office doesn’t mean it should have plain Jane walls. You can actually get a little creative with them. A popular trend for modern offices is the use of patterned wallpaper and tiles which give off a unique take on the accent wall. If your office has raw brick walls, by all means, use that as an accent wall or leave it as is. It is an inexpensive option that you can use and you can even hang some framed paintings and pictures or even company plaque awards.
Another decorative element to try is creating decorative dividers. You can use these dividers to define a space or simply make an accent panel. You can even create a dual purpose divider by incorporating some shelves for books and files.
A nice ode to nature is by having some potted plants in your work space. Experts say that by having plants inside, it will promote ample circulation of air and oxygen as well as provide a calming and relaxing effect when working. You can have low maintenance plants such as succulents and snake plants and even hanging plants.
5. LET THERE BE LIGHT!
Last and definitely not the least, your modern office requires adequate lighting to help with the work. Most offices will use what is called general lighting, which is a type of lighting that illuminates the entire work area. However, for a more focused lighting, you can go for task lighting which focuses its light on a specific area, namely the work station.
Go for hanging lights with fluorescent lightbulbs that emit a bright white light that helps with the work. Or if you are going for an energy and cost efficient light, opt for lighting fixtures with LED lights as they give off a brighter light than most.
If you have tall windows, take advantage of the natural light and supplement it with pin lights. As much as possible, make sure that every corner has ample lighting so as to have a well-lit office space.
And above all, when creating your new office interior design, always aim for the increased productivity and satisfaction of your employees. Always put them in the equation when you create an adequate working space for them. You will find that with a well-designed office, you will have happier employees and increased productivity.