Office environment trends expected in 2018

offices of 2018

Images courtesy of mindvalley.com and their newly unveiled offices in 2017 

Office environment trends expected in 2018

Employees and employers alike are starting to realise that a workforce is more than business model, so the way offices are set up and staff work are set for a big shake up this year. There will be a number of popular trends ebbing their way into the work space throughout 2018, here’s a few to look out for:

  1. Staff well-being will be front and centre within the workplace

Employers are beginning to realise that happy employees are productive and engaged employees, and that a good work environment can often contribute to that happiness. Work spaces are adapting to offer things that lift employee’s spirits, such as more natural light, free fruit days, more plants and use of full spectrum light-bulbs to curb the effects of Seasonal Affective Disorder. Employers are also thinking more carefully about their staff benefits and flexible working patterns to give staff a better work life balance and ensure they feel more valued.

  1. Changeable spaces

Office spaces are becoming more changeable, with furniture that has dual purposes and/or can be moved easily, with remote controlled walls so a space can be divided or enlarged, multifunctional areas with all of the latest tech, and screens that are discreetly stored so they are away when not in use but can be brought out at the touch of a button when needed. Office spaces are also being made to look and feel homelier, not to mention that people are now able to work from the comfort of their own homes remotely when there’s no need to go into the office at all.

  1. Homeliness

Touched upon in #2, there’s a little room to expand on this. Workplaces are now being equipped with things like fully functional kitchens and shower rooms, break out rooms and relaxion areas – some even have onsite gyms. Linking in with #1 too, staff value being able to shower after cycling to work or having a pre-work workout. Having an enjoyable lunch in a cosy space with sofa’s is also a good boost for employee morale.

  1. Collaboration is key

Companies are realising that collaboration in a workplace is imperative. Whether that’s on a humanistic level – encouraging the forming of better relationships between colleagues and departments to avoid silos, or whether that’s by investing in their digital collaboration tools – bringing global companies closer together and including remote or flexi-workers more within the office sphere.

  1. Increase of VR and Chatbots

Presentations will finally be stepping into the digital era, with PowerPoint presentations becoming a thing of the past (horray!). Virtual reality headsets will soon be the go to for creating immersive, responsive and interactive presentations that engage our audiences within the world of work. Chatbots will also be a staple in the workforce, boosting productivity and assisting customers directly – with the basic things at first. They will be a valuable tool, helping staff and customers alike.

  1. The Internet of Things (IoT)

We already see it in many places we look – with Alexa, FitBit and smart watches. It is predicted that there could be up to 50 billion connected devices by 2020. We will no longer need to plug our laptops or USB’s into the presentation screen, or even bring them into the room. Staff will be able to engage in training or presentations using their mobile phones, and receive a copy on their devices instantaneously. Even making coffee at work won’t take 5-10mins anymore as the machine will be accessible from your desk and will tell you when your coffee is ready to collect.

IoT will also play a role in supporting workplace connectivity, productivity, talent management, and conducting regular business. IoT will aid data collection for executives and HR, using information gleaned from onsite sensors and employee badges to assess, monitor and improve staff and business operations in 2018.

 

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