Office design over the past few years has been really collaborative like Cisco’s space by Studio O+A, but we think 2014 might hold something a little more organized.
So a few weeks ago we blogged about our predictions for Interior Design in 2014 as they relate to aesthetics and style . Aesthetics is an important part of the design of an office, retail shop or any commercial interior, but for our team of Registered Interior Designers , function really has to come first. So, what are our functional predictions for 2014?
In the early part of this decade, the truly open collaborative office design became commonplace. At first it seemed like a great idea to cater to the needs of the ever-increasing population of tech-reliant millennial employees, but in the past couple of years we’ve realized that this method has had a huge and negative impact on the productivity of our older generation or those with jobs requiring focused concentration.
So, in response, last year we saw the open office mature with the addition of small support spaces scattered throughout the open office environment allowing for equally spontaneous collaboration, but within conveniently located rooms. Although we think this method will continue in 2014, we wouldn’t be surprised to see a resurgence of structure. At Hatch, our corporate clients are beginning to ask us for offices again, but not the same stuffy 9’x10’ spaces of the past (and to clarify, this isn’t for the hierarchical reasons of the past; it’s purely based on function. Offices are shrinking in size, reconfigurable wall systems are gaining in popularity once more, and offices are transparent and connected to other spaces with glass walls.
We think we’ll see the return of the dedicated office space, but it will be smaller, more transparent, and reconfigurable. Something like Clive Wilkinson Architects designed for Pallota TeamWork.
With the popularity of open offices, collaboration has been a buzzword in the Interior Design industry, but it typically related to inter-office communication. Last year collaboration between various disciplines was the trend. Interior Designers were working closely with artists, craftsman, other designers and so on; this lead to the creation of some really meaningful and exceptionally interesting projects. Our Pinterest boards grew at a rapid pace!
The other thing we witnessed was the growth of shared offices – you know, that room with 30 desks spaces available for lease on an hourly, daily, or monthly term and mainly marketed to new start-ups, creatives, and one-(wo)man businesses. Inter-business collaboration remains commonplace.
So, what does this mean for 2014? We think the Inter-Business/Intra-Business collaboration will become more structured. Structured? Well, yeah, hear us out. Businesses will continue to share building space, but we’ll see slightly larger companies taking this approach AND each business will have dedicated areas that are specifically designed to incorporate their brand message and to suite their individual requirements. Good-bye generically-designed-shared-office, hello distinctive-business-within-a-collaborative-shared-environment.
Shared offices haven’t always looked like Ministry of New shown above. The style of these spaces have gotten much cooler over the years, but in 2014 we think we’ll see the branding of shared office spaces go one step further to allow each business to have their own space that’s true to their individual corporate identity.
Keep it Quiet, Keep it Quiet
The design of products for acoustic control has undergone some serious development recently. There are actually options now – finally. Acoustical control is an increasingly important factor for the success of our modern interiors particularly those with high ceilings, hard surfaces, open layouts, and specific privacy requirements. For the Hatch team, consideration of acoustics will become a foundational aspect of the projects we design.
We think 2014 will bring some really interesting acoustic creations that allow us to actually use them as the springboard for our interior designs and seamlessly integrate them into our commercial spaces. Integration is key, and by that we mean furniture, fixtures and materials that not only perform their basic functions, but also contribute to acoustic performance and the overall style of a space. In fact, we’re already seeing this and incorporating them into our projects…stay posted.
Just like the Hood Pendant by Form Us With Love, acoustic products will get increasingly multi-functional in 2014.
Well only the arrival of 2015 will reveal whether our predictions are accurate, but what do you think? Do you have any other predictions we should add to our list or watch out for? Let us know via our Facebook or Twitter pages!