How to Design an Office for the Next Generation

How does interior design change with the times? This decade has seen a number of major demographic changes in the modern workforce. Not only are the baby boomer generation entering into a stage of widespread retirement, but around the middle of the 2010s, millennials became the largest group within workforces across the world. Soon after, they began to move into management, altering standard workplaces structures still rooted in major changes from as far back as the 60s.

Now, Gen Z is climbing on the corporate ladder too. In order to stay relevant in the modern era, business owners need to take note of these trends as they shift, and plan accordingly. Gen Z has an even newer set of priorities; they’ve grown up with social media, so the way they interact is different to other generations. Millennials are similarly motivated more by their peers than other older generations. This means they respond well to collaboration, team environments, and frequent feedback.

Both of these groups also expect to be working with the latest technology, so updating your IT is a must, as younger generations are only going to grow in number within your workforce. Today, we look at what you can do to provide an attractive workspace for new staff, and the first thing we need to look at is data-driven design

Why Data-driven Office Design Matters

It’s a fact that better office space designs boost the mental and physical health of your employees, which in turn boosts productivity. Our day-to-day environment has the power to completely alter our levels of comfort, our happiness, and our ability to work efficiently.

Using data to inform design choices is proven to help tailor spaces to the particular staff of a company. This helps to minimise work-based anxiety and health concerns, as well as improving pathfinding throughout a site. Employers are moving into data-driven design, as it guarantees more accurate returns, and ultimately increases employee retention. With that said, we’re going to look at a few types of data-driven design that can help you attract younger generations to your commercial workspace.

Activity-based design

Gen Z and Millennials both prosper in interconnected group-based surroundings. Despite that, there’s always the possibility that they will need to separate themselves in order to take private calls, work on classified projects, or focus for extended periods of time on a task. This means that there’s still a niche to be filled in your spatial design regarding separated areas.

Using a mixed approach to open and closed floorplans lets you give your staff the tools they need, and then allow them to decide how to use them. This style of design is often called ‘activity-based’ as it’s grounded in the concept that employees should be able to move around based on what they are doing. Many new office spaces these days ensure they have common areas, smaller meeting rooms, and break-out zones from the get go.

Health-focused design

There is more and more data behind the idea that simple changes in workplace design can powerfully impact health and wellbeing. Health-focused design is a broad subject, as it can cover everything from ergonomic seating, to efficient use of natural light.

Designing spaces to encourage movement throughout the day is the key, according to the data. Innovative placements of stairs, lounges, restrooms and more can all go toward this goal.

Another sub-type of design beneath this is ‘biophilic’ design. With creative use of natural materials, light, and plants, data shows that employee moods can be improved. This comes under the health-focused design heading because it falls under mental health – more than ever, it’s important to remember that physical and mental health are actually very closely linked.

Tech-integrated design

Finally, integration of technology is important to younger generations. Digital tools and resources have to be implanted intelligently, otherwise they won’t be used to their fullest potential. A chief concern in this arena is finding ways to eliminate wires, as the mere sight of cluttered electronic cords can cause stress.

Another big factor in workplace tech is file sharing – being able to easily share content is paramount to most modern businesses.

Don’t get left behind

If you don’t want to be left behind, get the help of a professional. Here at DB Interiors, we’ve seen trends come and go, so we know which ones are here to stay. Whether you need designs for a new space, or the best office furniture nz wide for an existing space, talk to the experts first. Book your free discovery call with DB Interiors today!

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