Simplified and often unconventional spaces, adaptability, comfort, and an emphasis on collaboration. Today's workplace patently combines function with form -- and furniture is taking a front seat in this redefinition of "the office."
The "typical" workspace is quickly being relegated to "thing of the past" status, particularly in light of the Millennial generation, which now represents a significant percentage of office workers. This new breed of employees is more inclined toward open-concept, collaborative work spaces, alternative and technology integrated furniture.
Changing times equate to changing needs with adaptable furniture currently on trend. High quality, foldable desks, stackable chairs and rolling tabletops provide comfort and functionality for employees but are moveable to accommodate the same area for client meetings. While adjustable height desks aren't a new concept, the demand for a more flexible style continues on the steady rise.
Unconventional is becoming the new convention in workspace design. We're seeing fewer offices with doors and more employing an open space concept -- more of a coffee shop or home living room look. It makes sense, considering the number of hours people are spending at work these days.
In fact, an estimated 80 percent of the American workforce spend most of their day at a desk -- do the math at an average five days a week at 40-60 hours per and related injuries can become an issue. New ergonomically-correct furniture with molded form soft seating, for example, can help take the pain out of sitting-related injuries. From sit/stand desks, moveable keyboard trays, monitor stands and ergonomic-friendly chairs, sitting with health in mind is the new mantra in today's office space.
An increasing number of businesses are also recognizing the appeal of color in office furniture. More and more, company lobbies and workspaces are outfitted with colorful furniture and décor in contrast to the gray, grayer, grayest furniture palette. Not only is a vibrant color scheme more attractive to employees and visiting clients, it can also become part of a company's brand.
It goes without saying that it's difficult to be productive if you're not connected; here is where training tables with variable power solutions come into play in the office of 2019. Tables with modesty panels are increasing in popularity because they adapt to changing needs by managing power and data cables with an under worksurface cable trough, which discreetly channels cords from table to table.
Businesses on a tight budget may not have the financial wherewithal to purchase new office furniture with all the "bells and whistles" yet the need to provide a work space where employees are comfortable, seated with good posture and not leaving at the end of the day in pain is a must. Think reasonably priced perch stools and ball chairs that require people to shift weight while seated or adjustable height desks that can work double duty in a job share or multiple shift office.
It's not just daily work spaces that need a little attention. Conference rooms have a tendency toward the stodgy side, but since so many important decisions and ideas come as a result of meetings held there, why not go creative. That oblong table can still remain, but if it shares space with a couch, a couple of ergonomically friendly chairs and maybe a coffee table, those decisions and ideas may increase.
Unpleasant office acoustics can sometimes work against productivity. The repeated click and plod of heels and soles on tiled floor rooms, hallways and restrooms can be distracting and downright annoying. It's not necessary, though, to carpet the entire office. A few well-placed area rugs will mute those bothersome sounds and lend a homey touch.
The amount of time today's office worker is on the job is greater than ever, but with the proper space layout, seating, and a little creativity and mindfulness, a full day's work won't translate into a short night of uncomfortable sleep for your employees.
Need to see it in person, or what fresh ideas for the office space? Check out Pulse Technology’s Office of the Future Open House from 11:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., May 16, at Pulse Technology, 312 Roberts Road, Chesterton. Check out vendors such as Sharp, Smuckers, and 3M showcasing the future of office technology. You could walk away with a free giveaway as well! Register and get all the details here: https://www.pulsetechnology.com/open-house-in.
Article written by Megan Barrera - Pulse Technology
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