Different workspace for a different task
For most of us, the 9-5 workday is a thing of the past – powerful, lightweight tech allows us to work as we move, jumping from place to place, not settled anywhere for particularly long as we embrace a different workspace for a different task. This is the modern way of working, so our workspaces should reflect this to better suit the modern lifestyle.
People are expecting more from their workspaces. Softer more fluid environments that encourage flexible working in a variety of spaces. An office should have a diverse range of spaces that encourage ‘me space’ and promote the workplace as somewhere they want to go, rather than somewhere they have to go.
Individuals have their own styles and unique ways of working, and at Maris Interiors we aim to establish how people want to work with the diverse set of tasks we undertake everyday.
We meet with executives, managers, and departmental staff to gather a deep understanding of their work trends and habits, to better understand what their ideal workspace would look like and how they could better engage with their environment.
Modern employees are looking for workplaces that are inclusive, engaging, and encourage a more mobile work style. More often than not, our mobiles, laptops and online applications allow us to work from anywhere, and our workplaces should do what they can to encourage this ‘martini’ work style – anytime, anyplace, anywhere.
There have been countless studies conducted examining the modern workforces and their levels of productivity and engagement with their workplace. A recent study from Gallup, states that engagement with the workplace indicates a deeper emotional and behavioural connection to a job and company. They found that ‘only 29% of millennials are engaged at work,’ and estimated that ‘millennial turnover due to lack of engagement costs the U.S. economy $30.5 billion each year.’
Maris Interiors recognise that some level of privacy is paramount in offices, and incorporating private spaces into the design approach is essential for some people. Making phone calls in an open space, with others nearby, can be noisy and distracting. As a result of this, we construct enclosed areas within the office with acoustic wall liners to limit travelling sound and private phone booths for individuals.
Open spaces are equally important, specifically collaboration spaces. They are unrivalled in their ability to encourage group work and a sharing of ideas, but of course, its effectiveness is dependent on the task at hand.
Collaboration spaces do however build the noise level, which negatively impact those who are trying to concentrate in their own space and wanting to limit distractions, whether they be visual or acoustic.
It is crucial to have a mix of both individual workstations with private spaces, as well as collaboration spaces for group work, or presentations, or even just as a space for people to touchdown and complete a quick task.
Furniture, office furniture included, is tactile by its very nature; everyone uses it, so it has to be right.
Sore backs, necks or bottoms are all attributed to furniture not being fit for purpose. Performance and productivity should be by-products of comfort.
Ergonomic office furniture is one of the essential elements of the work environment and is now a necessity for most offices. Varieties of high-tech office chairs flood the market with benefits of ‘added comfort’, ‘durability’, ‘recline and swivel ability’, ‘adjustable features’ that can prevent ‘back and circulation problems’. They are, of course, more expensive, but companies recognise this as a worthy investment because it is a way to keep their staff sat comfortably behind their desks for prolonged periods.
The advantages of ergonomic furniture, like reduced lower back strain and relieving muscle and joint stress, are crucial to its users but we must also balance out our sedentary routine with regular movement. Workplace designs are developing environments that encourage more movement for its users. Offering a variety of workspaces for employees to get up and relocate to a range of areas within the workspace – collaboration areas, breakout spaces, tea points and individual workstations.