We explore how flexible working has inspired a new wave of office design – and how workspaces might look in the future.
Business are now comfortable with the idea of flexible working, whether that means starting early for a couple of days so we can take an afternoon off or keeping in touch with the office via a desk space at home.
It’s easy to see why it works as a business model, and it’s nothing new. Back in 2013 Vodaphone found potential savings of £34bn (€39.4bn) by freeing up workspace and allowing flexible working hours.
Studies show flexible working increases productivity, reduces staff turnover and employee well-being experiences an upsurge when employees are freed from the traditional nine-to-five.
A rise in flexible working brings a requirement to rethink workspaces. With more of us using co-working spaces or splitting our time between home and the office, the idea of open plan rooms filled with rows of desks feels out dated.
Now, a new wave of office spaces are shaping our workday future.
Employees want workspaces to reflect a sense of openness and flexible thinking and it’s not enough just to have a bowl of fruit within easy reach, a pot of coffee brewing in the background or holding the occasional bring-your-dog-to-work days.
Workers look for environments that transition from living space to work place and in turn, designers are creating diverse work settings within traditional spaces. We’re seeing a change in the way employees position themselves in a workspace.
This is most prevalent in dining and break-out spaces. Keen to keep people on premises and offer flexible space, business leaders are creating cool, functional spaces in their plans to keep staff happy. True have been supporting organizations in this process, supplying refrigeration solutions to match their aspirations.
Inspiration from the Hospitality Industry
London-based architecture and interior design practice, Universal Design Studio, have designed spaces for British Library and IBM. Director Paul Gulati, recently told Creative Review that designers are finding inspiration from the hospitality industry:
“We’re seeing a change in the way people position themselves in a workspace. We’ve become so used to doing business in hotel lobbies or cafes that there’s now an overlap with office design, where you see some of the aesthetics or typologies of seating and meeting spaces.”
“It’s gone in the other direction as well; hotels have started to take on that requirement for creating different types of spaces where people might meet in different ways. Traditionally separate typologies have started to merge to some degree.”
This kind of design is something True can support designers to deliver, as more collaborative and flexible workspaces opt for relaxed dining areas that double up as break out spaces and put users in control.
Case Study: WeWork
Delivering Workspaces of the Future
WeWork provide shared workspaces and services for entrepreneurs, freelancers, startups, small businesses and large enterprises. With offices around the world, they recognize the importance of flexible space and the positive impact a working community has on the productivity and satisfaction of people and organizations. They also take inspiration from the hospitality industry to give users the experience they expect.
True supplies WeWork with its refrigeration in common areas. The days of musty, crammed staff refrigerators packed with food containers and handwritten notes about what food belongs to whom are relegated to the past. Today, True supplies WeWork locations with products like the adaptable True Air Curtains allow users to clearly see and access products, without sacrificing on temperature or efficiency.
Ideas to take away
Reimagining your office space is a large commitment – but it can unlock productivity and efficiency savings that help take your business up a level. Here’s what you can do to start turning your workspace into an inspiring place:
Think flexible – like Vodaphone and WeWork, offer your people the opportunity to work in a way that suits them
Take inspiration from hospitality – There’s a reason people like to set up shop in the nearest Starbucks. How can you make your space more reflective of theirs?
Small changes get big results – changes to lighting, color and improving your sustainability can have a big impact on your staff and how they work.
If, like WeWork, you have a bigger refrigeration requirement or lots of locations, energy efficiency is a huge factor in both cost savings and maintaining your sustainable brand that your clients and staff will love.
True leads the pack when it comes to sustainable refrigeration. Offering flexible solutions that are also efficient and effective thanks to our innovative R290 hydrocarbon technology.
How we can help
True have been pioneering efficient refrigeration that looks great and fits into stylish spaces for over 70 years. We can offer practical advice and refrigeration that can take your space to the next level.
From stunning and versatile display units, to super-efficient storage, True has the solution to fit your space.
Get in touch to see the solutions we have available.
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