Do you know your workplace wellness from your GDPR? Or your sit/stand desks from your living walls? Thames Contract specialise in office design and build projects in and around London, including Potters Bar, Hitchin, Watford and Barnet. We take a keen interest in all office design issues – so here are some of the key features which are predicted to be popular next year.
An Increase in Privacy Storage
Do you remember all those GDPR emails earlier in the year from websites you have used or subscribed to? Well, the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations also have implications for the way in which companies store information about their clients and customers.
It is no longer acceptable for sensitive information to be kept in plain sight within the office. You shouldn’t leave post-it notes with customer contact details stuck to your desk or computer, for instance. This type of data must be kept secure and out of sight, so offices can expect to see an increase in the number of secure storage facilities such as locked cabinets.
More Mobile Working Spaces
This has partly been driven by technology. Mobile devices allow people to work in lots of different places, and not necessarily at a desk.
In design terms this means plenty of breakout areas which can easily be adapted for work as well as relaxation, lightweight mobile furniture, and a resurgence in the popularity of open-plan offices. This helps to promote creativity, collaboration and flexibility.
This is an initiative which has received top-level backing from the Government’s Department of Work and Pensions, as they can see the benefits of having a healthy workforce. It means staff should be given places to relax and unwind properly, even to the extent of banning digital devices like mobile phones and tablets from specified areas.
It also means looking after your staff’s physical health as well as their mental health. So the offices of 2019 are likely to see increasing numbers of sit/stand desks being installed, as working in different positions improves staff posture and helps them burn more calories. Studies have also suggested that employees who can work standing up were almost 50% more productive.
Another aspect of workplace wellness is the recognition that staff should enjoy as much natural light as possible. This means that, as far as is practically possible, none of the windows are covered up, and if partitions are needed within the office, that they should be made of glass.
If you do need artificial light, try to make sure it complements the existing office décor and space.
Green is Still the Colour
The trend of bringing the outdoors indoors will still be strong in 2019. Biophilic design makes nature an integral part of the office, and the predictions are that green walls, vertical gardens and even internal patios will be popular next year. Natural materials such as bamboo, wood and stone will also feature prominently in office design.
Having plenty of plants in the office has the bonus of improving the air quality for employees, as plants help purify the atmosphere by taking in carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen.
Office Designs and Builds from Thames Contracts
Thames Contracts specialise in high-quality office design and build projects in Potters Bar, Borehamwood, St Albans, and other destinations in and around London. We can incorporate features such as green or living walls, additional storage and glass partitions and will appoint a project manager who will liaise with you throughout the whole process. This helps to ensure that your new offices, whether you are having existing premises refurbished or are moving to a new site, will be tailored to fit your specific requirements. Follow the link above to get in touch.