8 Corporate Office Design Trends for a Productive and Healthy Work Environment

Corporate office design is about so much more than aesthetics. When thoughtfully designed, an office can support creativity, productivity, and the wellness of the people who work there. As more corporations recognize the importance of their office design, trends have emerged to focus on elements that create a great working environment. From incorporating natural elements to helping employees feel empowered to work from anywhere, these are the design trends that are shaping the modern corporate office. 

1. Incorporate Earthy Tones and Natural Elements

While we can’t work outside all year long, bringing the outdoors in can be as easy as utilizing earth-toned colors and natural textures. These colors: blues, greens, and beige tones, can help to create a calming environment. This is especially helpful for corporations where employees or guests can feel stressed such as financial institutions or healthcare facilities.

In our collaboration with Zen Noh Grain, we utilized earthy colors, potted plants, warm lighting, and elements of richly colored wood to give the entire office a calming but modern appeal. 

2. Designing Corporate Offices to be Relaxing Environments

An important component for prioritizing employee mental health in the office is providing a way for employees to feel relaxed and at ease at work. Many corporate office design strategies can be used to create this effect. We particularly like giving employees a variety of different workspaces, as well as lounge spaces at the office. While it may feel counterintuitive to invest in a relaxing lounge, creating these spaces really does help to boost overall productivity. Research indicates that creative thinking occurs more during periods of mental relaxation than during active engagement in tasks. Therefore investing in calming office spaces helps to create those crucial ah-ha moments among your staff. 

An innovative way to build lounge zones in an open-concept office is to utilize architectural pieces like the Haworth Pergola. As a freestanding workplace, Pergola can be installed in any room and can be used for a wide variety of purposes from small breakout rooms and coffee stations to a lounge to simply relax. 

3. Create Flexible Work Locations

Providing just one space for your employees to work creates a sense of being “chained to your desk” that no one enjoys. When creativity is a must, so are multiple work environments. There are many ways you can provide these for your employees. 

One option is having a “hot desk” policy where no one has a particular desk assigned to them. Instead, they can pick and choose which desk they work from on a given day. This is especially helpful if you have a hybrid work environment and employees work from the office some days and from home other days. Hot desking allows your office to have fewer total desks and give employees the flexibility to choose where they work. 

Alternate work locations can be created in your outdoor spaces when available. By providing outdoor seating and tables your employees can get fresh air while dreaming up your next big project.

The previous suggestions all function effectively for team-based work and collaboration. But, there are many times when we’re at work and just need to focus on getting things done alone or hop on a call without background noise. It’s helpful to provide quiet areas for your employees to meet those needs. We like the new HushPhone, from the HushOffice suite. This is a sound-dampening private workspace perfect for solo work, or phone calls.

4. Provide Ergonomic Support with Office Furniture

Working in organizations that prioritize employee health and safety is a focus for many top candidates today. Utilize the corporate office furniture design trend of providing multiple levels of ergonomic support to leverage this great perk! Sitting all day every day simply isn’t good for the human body. Consider giving your employees a height-adjustable desk, or even modifying existing desks with an Ergotron Sit-Stand workstation. This allows employees to choose to stand while they work.

We all sit at our desks, however, and providing ergonomic desk chairs is a huge benefit to employees. Zody LX is both a leader in sustainability and ergonomics. Built to help users optimize their posture this chair is a great ergonomic choice. These pieces promote proper posture, reduce the risk of musculoskeletal issues, and empower employees to customize their workstations for maximum comfort and productivity. See our blog post for even more ergonomic tips.

5. Integrate Pops of Color into Your Office Design

Incorporating pops of vibrant colors can inject energy and creativity into corporate office environments. Whether through accent walls, furniture, or decor elements, strategic use of color can inspire and motivate employees while adding visual interest to the workspace. The 2023 color of the year, Viva Magenta, was a great example of this. 

6. Design with Modular & Movable Construction in Mind

Modular construction allows for greater flexibility in office layout and configuration. By utilizing movable walls, furniture, and partitions, companies can easily adapt their spaces to accommodate changing needs over time. We used Haworth Enclose Frameless Movable Office Walls in the Son of a Saint Headquarters for this reason.

These walls are made of glass panels that quickly and easily come together to make light and airy office spaces. Whenever a change is needed, these walls are easily reconfigured to work for the new needs of the space. 

7. Utilize Biophilic Corporate Office Design

Working outside may not be possible, but bringing greenery inside is! We all have an innate desire to connect with nature, which doesn’t often happen inside corporate offices. However, adding green walls, potted plants, and even nature-inspired designs can help to bring in the nature we crave. This is called Biophilic design.

The above BuzziPlanters do double duty. They help bring plants into your office while providing much-needed sound dampening. Built with high-density foam, these absorb noise and help contribute to the acoustics of your space. 

8. Design with Acoustics and Sound Masking in Mind

Effective acoustic design is essential for reducing noise distractions and creating a conducive environment for focused work and collaboration. It can also be a critical component of your office when confidentiality is needed. We like utilizing furniture that is functional and helps to absorb sound. The BuzziPlanters above are one option, and Haworth Cabana is another great option below. With tall backs, these lounges help to create a close work environment that reduces visual and sound-related distractions.

Incorporating sound-absorbing materials, acoustic panels, and sound masking technology can help control noise levels and improve overall comfort and productivity. Lots of acoustic and sound masking tips are shared in this blog post

Conclusion: Corporate Design Trends Can Increase Productivity

By embracing these trends in corporate office design, companies can create environments that not only support the well-being and productivity of their employees but also foster a culture of innovation and success. From biophilic elements to ergonomic features investing in thoughtful design can yield significant benefits for both employees and organizations alike.

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