Our 2023 Workspace Predictions

Modern office workers in 2023 are demanding changes!  Many have spent the better part of the past few years working very effectively from the comfort of home.  They see no reason why this can’t continue, and why they can’t have a hybrid work model.  This would require them to only come into the office for specific reasons such as creative collaborations or meetings.  So – in the midst of this changing, and challenging, workplace landscape, what are our 2023 workspace predictions?

What Will Drive Workspace Design In 2023?

Employee Centric Office Spaces

Today’s office environment must be more employee-centric than ever before.  People don’t want to ‘have to go to work’ in the traditional sense if what they’re working on can be done remotely.  They know modern technology allows them to do this, and they understand how to use this technology effectively!  Companies need a good reason to insist they return to the office and one of the most effective ways for them to do this is by creating a workplace experience that appeals to all the five senses – with the right balance of creativity and sincerity an atmosphere can be created that appeals to everyone, boosting morale. Creating a workplace where employees feel inspired and energized is going to be a big part of what we see in 2023 workplace design! 

Growing Reliance on Flexible, Collaborative Workspaces

The office environment of 2023 must provide people with more options around where and how they work as well as facilitate better communication and collaborative teamwork.

The remote and hybrid working trends started during Covid lockdowns look set to firmly entrench themselves in the workplace.  This will result in the ongoing implementation of a range of metrics designed to accommodate these changing workplace perceptions. 

Hybrid workers for example are much more likely to only visit the office for collaborative purposes.  This will drive the development of offices more as focal points of innovative creativity, where people mostly come together to brainstorm, discuss, inspire, invent, and create.  Facilitating this creativity will require better and more effective ‘collaborative spaces’.  The need for permanent offices, cubicles, and workstations will correspondingly reduce.

However, although it may be tempting to turn large areas of office space into permanent collaborative areas, this doesn’t work well or effectively.  When such spaces aren’t being used, they’re wasted.

The solution will increasingly be reconfigurable, flexible, modular fixtures and fittings that can be quickly and effectively moved about as needed, like our sliding panel systems and moveable walls.  These spaces can then be filled with mobile furniture that can be multi-purposed to serve as either a private or group workspace.

More Focus on Ergonomically Designed, Modular, And Mobile Office Furniture

Companies that encourage and support employees investing more time in the office must provide ergonomically designed furniture. This means supportive seating, attractive functional worktops and the incorporation of active furniture such as treadmill workstations, sit-stand desks, and various other innovative furniture designs.

Smart storage and locker solutions will become more prevalent as employees require work environments that provide them with the ability to organise their space and access their supplies with ease.

Obligation To Meet Rising Health Expectations

Covid has changed many of our health expectations, particularly with respect to public spaces.  Employees therefore expect companies to provide workspaces that don’t merely comply with basic mandated health directives but go above and beyond.

Effective office and workspace designs must now factor in things like social distancing, hygiene, clean air, ergonomic furniture, and a host of other considerations.

Requirement For Better Acoustics

Acoustics will become increasingly more important in workspace design.  People now used to working from home find a noisy distracting office environment is not an effective or inspiring place to work.  They will require quieter workspaces designed with comfort, focus, and productivity in mind.

Further, if employees are mainly in the office to collaborate – rooms and meeting areas must be appropriately designed acoustically.  They not only need to keep overall noise levels down but also improve the acoustics within the room.

Products like sound absorbing ceiling tiles and acoustic panels are excellent for these purposes so more and more workspace designs will incorporate them.  Acoustic-friendly materials such as cork flooring and carpet will likewise increase in use along with acoustically designed furnishings, wall coverings, and lighting.

Use Of Modern Textiles and Exciting Interior Design Elements

The colour palette of the office workspace in 2023 is moving towards bolder, brighter, inspirational, and modern but at the same time aesthetically pleasing and soothing.  The merging of new with old, modern juxtaposed with traditional, and increasing use of contrasting textures in flooring, walls, and furnishings will increase.

Creative Environment the Big Key For Workspaces In 2023

As office workspaces move towards being hubs of inspiration and creativity, décor and furnishings likewise must be creative, and inspiring.  At the same time, there also needs to be spaces of peace, quiet, and tranquillity.  It’s all about optimising the work experience so that no matter what type of work people are doing they can find a space within the office that feels ‘right’ and allows them to work effectively.

Natural Lighting and Biophilic Design Principles

Probably one of the biggest trends of 2023 is the rise of the biophilic work environment.  This concept stems from the theory that because humans evolved in natural surroundings, we are genetically predisposed to work better in these environments.

Thus, workspaces that merge elements of nature into the office and workspace environment i.e. natural lighting, ventilation, plants, water, rocks and so on, will become a lot more common.  Studies have already shown that people who have access to natural light during their workday sleep for almost an hour longer than those who work in artificial light!

Consideration For Neurodiverse Employees

Neurodiversity refers to a range of conditions involving brain function and the way it affects someone’s ability to process and interpret information.  Conditions like Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia and Dyspraxia are common examples of neurodiverse disorders.

Employers have been aware of these disorders in their workplaces for some time but have often been slow to implement changes to accommodate affected people.  That is changing and we predict 2023 will see significant improvements in workspace design for neurodiverse employees.

Introducing flexibility and functionality into workspace designs allows neurodiverse employees to find, or create, environments that suit their particular psychological needs and wellbeing.  These may include areas where soothing décor, natural lighting, peace and tranquillity can co-exist within an otherwise energetically creative office environment.

Sustainable And Net Zero Office Buildings

One of the biggest positives to come out of Covid is that globally we all saw how shutting down industry and reducing vehicle and airplane activity for months had an immediate, and positive, impact on the environment.  This has added impetus to the growing groundswell of public concern about the health of the planet.  

Consequently, businesses are now increasingly expected to step up and play their part in driving changes for the better.  This will manifest across the workplace and office workspace environment as a drive towards net zero offices, green buildings and designs, and the use of:

  • More recycled materials and products in both building materials and furnishings,

  • More energy efficient heating and cooling,

  • More energy efficient spaces,

  • More energy efficient buildings and technology,

  • More biophilic design elements to help reduce carbon footprint

Employee Expectations Are Driving Workspace Design Trends In 2023

2023 will be a year of ongoing innovation in workspace design, driven largely by employee expectations.  The concept of ‘working in an office’ is changing rapidly from the employee perspective.  Enterprising businesses have embraced these changes and are slowly but surely making the workspace transformations needed to woo their employees back into the office.  Others are still dragging their heels and may well lose valuable employees because of it.

Contact us to learn more about our reconfigurable and acoustic workspace solutions.

Contact Creatif today to discuss your moving wall and reconfigurable space requirements with one of our experts

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