Office Design Trends To Watch In 2019

In 2018, we witnessed an increasingly innovative way of using previously dead spaces (the third space). Now, get ready for what’s new in 2019!

It’s All About the Experience

In 2019, the office trend that is the main focus is the workplace experience. The idea of the workplace experience stems from the desire to create a workplace where staff feel happy and can work productively. 

“This experience is influenced by a wide range of factors from the quality of tea, coffee, and snack on offer to the ability to store bikes and quality of showering facilities but increasingly, progressive companies are becoming more proactive when it comes to defining the workplace experience from the perspective of staff and clients.”- K2 Space

“This trend incorporates a host of characteristics, all of which orbit the “human potential” aspects of space optimization. Experience-Driven Spaces are highlighted by employee-focused and specialized enhancements aimed at developing overall wellness, cultivating happiness, community-building, and boosting morale for everyone from interns to top-floor executives.”- Zack Sterkenberg

These Experience-Driven Spaces include (but are not limited to) features such as:

  • Massage therapy and chiropractor consultation spaces
  • Meditation areas
  • Acupuncture and holistic medicine offerings
  • Yoga studios and walking/jogging trails
  • Rock-climbing walls 
  • Espresso and cocktail bars 
  • Game rooms and virtual reality gaming spaces 
  • Corporate sports tournaments and active spaces (indoors and outdoors)
  • Theater and music stages 
Introducing IoT

According to Work Design Magazine, as the modern workplace has evolved, progressive enterprises have invested in emerging technologies to better understand their space. Among these technologies on the market are new IoT platforms that use minimal footprint wireless sensors to acquire and analyze real-time data – including space utilization, utility, and asset usage.

These platforms then use the results to provide custom solutions for businesses to understand how current and shared spaces are being used, while providing clear insights into opportunities to cut costs.

You may think you already have a clear understanding of your workplace operations, but IoT can provide insights the human eye simply can’t. 

According to Gallup:

  • Only 32 percent of workers feel engaged in their jobs
  • Actively disengaged employees cost the U.S. up to $605 billion each year in lost production
  • Happy workers are 12 percent more productive than the average worker and unhappy workers are 10 percent less productive
  • Companies with happy employees outperform their competition by 20 percent, earn 1.2 – 1.7 percent more than their peer firms and are 2.1 percent above industry benchmarks

In addition to the need for staff to feel engaged, businesses need to be cognizant of how these employees operate within a space to maximize efficiencies. A Deloitte study indicates the average modern workplace only utilizes 60 percent of its available space, which means any unused area and assets – including furniture, fixtures, and equipment – can be a significant and unnecessary expense to a business.

Old + New = 2019 Trend

One of our favorite office design trends of 2019 is the return of juxtaposing both vintage and new furnishings for a totally unique, layered, and well-judged look. It means preserving the craftsmanship built into the existing architecture, and for example bringing once dilapidated steel, brick structures, and warehouses back to life.

This trend can involve utilizing a variety of finishes and textures including ultra-modern glass buildings can be softened with brass, bronze, and gold influences, along with comfortable leather sofas with an aged look. Older office space can be brought into the 21st century with high-tech pod seating and living walls. Contrast makes for a creative and interesting space, effortlessly moves your space into the future while maintaining its inherent connection to the past.

Concentration Spaces

Many employees find it difficult to concentrate in the office due to noise levels and also distractions. In response to this, companies are creating small pods for individuals to work from but also library style spaces designed to give employees spaces where silence and distraction are minimized.

Rules we’ve seen in these types of spaces to ensure concentration – no mobiles, no talking, and no interruptions.

Green Workspaces: Second Nature

Everything from office buildings to hotels to malls has added living green walls, plants, trees, or flowers to their interior and exterior landscapes. The trend favoring interior greenery, like we saw last year with the Biophilically Designed trend, has evolved from a trendy fashion statement to a near-necessity in design economics.

Characteristics of the Second Nature trend: 

  • WELL certifications
  • FitWel certifications
  • LEED certifications
  • Living green walls
  • Plants
  • Natural materials – biomorphic forms & patterns such as wood and stone
  • Natural lighting
  • Thermal comfort and high-quality ventilation
  • Visual connections with nature
Repurpose and Recycle

The use of recycled materials and the repurposing of previous furnishings and accessories is featuring heavily in 2019 interior design trends, so it only makes sense that it’s popping up in office design ideas as well, and for good reason. Being environmentally conscious about your office design not only helps you create a special and one-of-a-kind office space, but it also helps lessen your impact on the environment too.

Cohabitation Spaces

Traditional co-working spaces, popularized by tech startups, bring multiple companies under one roof. The various entities operate separately and often remain closed off from one another. In the new cohabitation spaces, the walls are coming down and allowing companies to share the same space, resources, and sometimes even talent.

Our mantra at RI Group is that great employees and great companies deserve great offices. Do you have an upcoming office project? Call us at 800.427.5811 or email: info@rigroup-us.com.

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