Take a moment to harken back to the last time you went on vacation, or went to a hotel. Did it feature dated and bland decor, numb fluorescent lighting and a stale overall feel? Probably not; if it did – you’d probably high-tail it out of there as quickly as possible searching for the next best thing.
Office spaces in the modern day and age are really no different. Today, life/work balance is a pivotal segment of the workforces’ ideology for what makes a good work environment. If the office space falls short, chances are that your levels of corporate motivation, loyalty, and productivity are going to lack as well.
For modern day tech companies, the answer to creating a sought-after office ideal is to embrace design concepts that encourage creativity and freedom of independent thought. This can be done by incorporating design cues from the past, learning from the history of the workplace, embracing the lessons we’ve learned, and cuing up an inspiring space that people actually want to spend time in. Take a look at our top tips for tech company office design.
Colour plays a big role in how the body and mind respond and behave to their surroundings. Certain colours and shades inspire different levels of motivation, or feelings altogether in people. The office is no different. Any group, company, or organization owes it to themselves to research and implement colour theory into their office design strategy.
For tech companies, the psychology of red may be a good choice for an aggressive industry that is constantly changing and evolving. Red is psychologically associated as an invigorating colour, helping to increase blood pressure and as a result, may help to increase levels of motivation in workers. Further, green is associated psychologically with contemplative and analytical thought, freshness and harmony; in an overwhelmingly busy tech business setting, green may provide a design aesthetic that allows staffers to relax and accumulate their new thoughts into something innovative.
Similarly, purple is often chosen as a meeting or boardroom colour, as it is interpreted as a regal colour, influencing critical thinking. Blue is a great choice for potentially stressful office settings, as it has been found to slow the heart rate and calm the body and mind.
Greenery and green space create positive vibes, reduce stress in the work environment and improve air quality. They look great, and their presence promotes positive mental stimuli in human beings, cites Dr. Susan Barton in her book, “Human Benefits of Green Spaces.”
Science maintains that greenery increases our ability to concentrate and ignore distractions brought on by difficult working environments, particularly open concept offices. More specifically, voluntary attention is improved when office designs incorporate some form of natural surroundings into their layout.
The trouble with green spaces is, people often associate them as background filler, and they’re forgotten or dismissed as being inherently important. Therefore, making them a focal point of a room, or positioning a busy office space with a spectacular view of nature brings its importance into the limelight.
An ideal, positive and motivating lighting design in the office is a bright, unobstructed atmosphere that offers innovative design without being overly visible and distracting. It’s in this way, that lighting needs to upgrade a room without becoming a focal point.
Think of office lighting design much like that of a film set designer; if lighting is done correctly, the audience won’t notice how well it’s been done. It will blend into the scene and appear almost natural. Further, the added utilization of brightness sensors give workers a constant lighting level, helping to facilitate concentration.
LED alternatives to old methods like fluorescent bulbs offer great cost savings as well, sometimes saving companies as much as 61% on lighting energy costs, making an updated, bright and modern lighting design in the office a thrifty move to boot.
This is the big issue. The layout. Over the years, popular office culture gurus have argued, and flip flopped back and forth between two main competing office design ideologies; cubicles and open concept offices.
These days, it’s easy to say take a little from column A and a little from column B to create the perfect space – but it’s more complex than that.For tech companies, an urban zoning methodology, or an office neighborhood layout design offers a fantastic middleground to the competing formalities of open concept office space and that of a cubicle dominated office landscape.
Millennials are going to account for over 75% of the modern workforce by 2017, and they vastly value an accommodating space to work. So much so, that they even opt to give up their sense of psychological privacy in exchange for the opportunity to move about and work with their chosen office friends. In pleasing millennials therefore, it’s hugely important to incorporate an office design that gives them the freedom to explore spaces, taking what they need from each oom and applying it to each specific task, inspiring their overall job satisfaction and happiness, while company morale, motivation and productivity improve as well.
A neighbourhood design features private spaces for more complex, analytical based tasks, while the open concept portion can be likened to a town square, wherein employees are encouraged to be social, exchange ideas, collaborate and find new ways of accomplishing tasks. The design is a mainstay of many existing tech companies in the Silicon Valley area, with Google, Foursquare, Twitter, and Facebook all adopting aspects of the office neighbourhood design ideology to stimulate creativity and productivity.
The bottom line is, positive vibes and good design that allow for, and encourage, innovation and creativity stimulate the minds and work ethics of new millennial workers in ways that old office design bigwigs couldn’t even imagine. By allowing your staff to dictate and collaborate on the intricacies of office design, you’ll be promoting a way of learning how to create more great products and services, while inspiring staff loyalty and efficiency. Begin your office design journey by exploring some of the above mentioned ideas, and consult your own references along the way to help you create your tech businesses dream office space.