A Glimpse into Office Spaces Post COVID
While we are all eager to resume some form of “normality” with regards to work-life, there has been a lot of discussion around what office spaces and workplaces will look like in the near future.
I think we all agree that open-plan offices as we know it will need to evolve to accommodate more long term social distancing measures.
It is clear that we will no longer continue to see large groups of individuals all standing in a closed meeting space or rows of desks to maximise floor space. We are already hearing of plans for offices to bring in more flexible work arrangements with staff working both in the office and at home.
With working from home being the new norm, people have been working off kitchen tables, beds, and couches, which are clearly not optimal spaces for computer-based work. Understandably this has taken a toll on people’s posture which has resulted in a spike in people seeking allied health services to undo some of the discomfort caused by workspaces less than optimal for health, wellbeing, and productivity.
So, let’s for a moment envisage an office space that can support employees’ physical wellbeing while still accommodating staff safely, and with appropriate distancing. What do we need to equip fit-outs with?
- A spacious workstation that offers them the chance to sit or stand as their body requires such as the Primo three-motor electric desk.
- Offer the ability to digitally recall individual settings on a workspace. As more people transition to flexible office hours, they will naturally be needing to share desks more. Here’s a great example of a workstation that allows users to program their favourite settings, the Primo two-motor electric desk.
- Equip meeting rooms with a more agile space and large meeting tables that allows staff to comfortably collaborate and distance themselves from one another such as the Macro long meeting table.
- With fewer desks and more staff working from home, consider allowing the chance to install a manual, lower spec but still adjustable workspace for home. Here’s a good example of an easy to use the workspace to suit a flexible worker spending more time at home – the Primo crank manual desk & the Elevar MaxiShift stand module.
These concepts are really just scratching the surface of what can be re-thought to create a space that is more conducive to maintaining distance while still feeling connected and being able to collaborate. We would expect these concepts and fit-outs to be coupled with thoughtful design initiatives from floor markers to increased hygiene and airflow.
We’d also like to celebrate the positives, at least you won’t spend hours searching for a fork or clean mug in the kitchen anymore because everyone will bring their own!