(Fourth of a four part series on Office Furniture Trends for 2012)
During 2012, we’ll be designing more open offices than ever before, with fewer cubicles, and more common work areas.
Cubicles sales peaked in 2000, when they accounted for nearly 37 percent of all office furniture sales. That’s fallen to about 26 percent. Companies now prefer more open spaces that make it easier for employees to work together.
Workers used to spend most of their day at a desk or cubicle, report to a conference room for meetings, then tread a familiar path back to their workstation. Now, companies are setting up more gathering areas in “in between” spaces, where workers can hold informal conferences, chat with colleagues, or plop down with a laptop. Workers like the flexibility, and companies encourage the collaboration.
More and more employees aren’t even in the office most of the time. They may be outside sales people or they could be working from home. Why waste precious office space on people who are rarely actually in the office. Common work areas and tables provide these workers with what they need to be productive during those rare times they are physically in the building.
The equipment we use and the way we work keep evolving, and so must our office designs. 2012 promises to be a year when we will see many of these changes take place.
As usual, we here at Workspace Solutions will keep you up to date on our “What’s New” blog.
(Third of a four part series on Office Furniture Trends for 2012)
Most of us like the idea of saving the world’s resources for future generations, but it hasn’t always been easy to put our money where our heart is. Happily, this is changing.
Office furniture stores like Workspace Solutions are now awash in green goods. Furniture made from recycled content, low VOC (volatile organic compound) paints that emit fewer greenhouse gases, organic fabrics and Energy Star business equipment that uses less electricity have become commonplace. The best news, they are price competitive with ordinary, non-green counterparts. Our top office furniture suppliers all feature green lines and products, and are introducing more every day.
Productivity is key for any piece of office furniture. White laminates provide a clean, blank work space that can spur creativity for the user.
It is refreshing and brings brightness. Previously shunned due to its strong reflective quality, white is becoming a popular option for the office. White is the sum of all colors and has no negative connotations. It can be used as both a main color and a contrast color. White creates room and size, brightens up and allows room to breath. It lends exclusivity and drama to spaces or objects. Black against a white background delineates and emphasizes form and design.
It may not be right for everyone, but more and more, white has become a color of choice in office design. What do you think? Are you ready for a white desk?
We used to design every work station the same way, and each worker just had to adapt. Today, we design work stations for the task that person will actually be performing, thereby increasing their efficiency and productivity. The downside to doing this in the past was having to mix and match furniture from different manufacturers or style lines. With the new Voi line from Hon, we can now make all of your office furniture look the same from the boardroom to the reception area. Voi gives us the ability to create incredibly flexible offices with a common look. Every desk and work station can be different, yet colors and surfaces all match.
It’s the new look of office design, with storage built across one side, and plenty of desk or table room on the other. It’s more efficient, ergonomic and works better with technology. Workspace Solutions has just added the new Keel line from Abco that is designed to fit today’s office styles. Check out Abco on our website here. Check out the Keel video:
Don’t take this sitting down! In fact, do yourself a favor and stand up to read this post. The May 2009 issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise published the results of a study of over 17,000 adults over 12 years revealed that those who sit all day at their jobs are at greater risk for developing cardiovascular disease. Exercise is great, but there appears to be little you can do to undo the effects of sitting down eight hours a day at your desk, unless you stop sitting. Then, how do you get your work done? Easy, with a stand up desk.
Workspace Solutions has some great ideas for a stand up desk arrangement. One of their companies, Humanscale, offers a desk that easily adjusts up and down. Combine this with a monitor arm for your computer screen, and with a simple adjustment, you can work standing up, or sitting down.
Workspace Solutions has a lot great ergonomic ideas that can make your office a healthier work environment. Call or contact us and we’ll be happy to discuss them with you.
Coming this fall to Workspace Solutions, Epic, from National, is loaded with layered surfaces and storage and organization tools such as pull out trays ideal for project work and stackers. Sliding doors, modularity and compatibility with the Exhibit Wall Rail Solution and WaveWorks casegoods further highlight its private office and open space application. Its Epicenter wall powers multiple workstations as well as supports eye level storage units for added convenience.
Every building has walls and sometimes what to do with them may be a tough decision. Say hello to Exhibit™, the latest line from National Furniture, and now available at Workspace Solutions. It removes barriers and transforms the walls into purposeful design elements offering a variety of solutions for all workplace, collaborative and social environments. Exhibit’s efficient use of wall space and various inserts, such as slat walls and work tools, marker boards and tack boards, serve as an organizational coach, brainstormer or an impromptu art gallery. Exhibit lets the walls do the “heavy lifting” creating a lighter, airier aesthetic while providing easy access to electrical and data. Check out the video, then talk to us about putting your walls to work for you.
The walls are lower, and collaboration level is higher with “Involve,” a new work station line from Allsteel that is now available at Workspace Solutions. The lowered heights of “Involve” work stations filter natural light and air into every area of a larger room. “Involve” was developed to support collaboration as it happens spontaneously at each individual workstation. If you’re looking for the latest in desks or workstations, count on Workspace Solutions to offer it. This video shows off “Involve” as well as some other new cool ideas from Allsteel.