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2023 Design Trends: The Future of Workspaces

As we enter 2023, changes to office designs will be determined by the decisions that companies make regarding occupation and mandating an office return. It is clear that of late, aspirations of staff and decisions made by their managers and business owners have not been fully aligned, thus having a bad impact on the culture of the workplace. To ensure this doesn’t continue and that they can maintain a good staff retention rate, It is critical that decision makers in a business find the balance and listen to their employees.

In this blog, we’ll explore some of the key trends that are shaping the future of office design and what they mean for the way we work:

  • Putting 2022 learnings into practice
  • Destination Workspaces: going beyond an office
  • Human-centric spaces
  • Increased use of AI
  • Bolder design choices
  • Sustainability lives on
  • Encouraging culture and community

February 14, 2023
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Putting 2022 learnings into practice

As we look ahead to 2023, it’s important to reflect on the lessons learned in the past few years. Whether it’s the impact of remote work on the office, the importance of creating healthy and supportive workspaces, or the need for more sustainable and environmentally-friendly practices, the lessons of 2020-2022 will play a key role in shaping the office fitout industry in the years to come. During these years, organisations have spent time working out what is best for their company. Thus, the preferred working patterns of individuals will become a reality in 2023, and must be balanced with the organisations’ overall goals.

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Destination Workspaces: going beyond an office

Gone are the days when an office was simply a place to sit and get work done. Today, the best offices are destinations in their own right; they have got to be commute-worthy, to answer to the reason that staff come in to work, by offering a range of amenities and experiences that go far beyond the traditional desk and chair. In 2023, we can expect to see more focus on creating workspaces that have additional offerings: social areas with a good food offering, tech-enabled collaboration spaces, and wellness facilities such as gyms that allow employees to work, relax, and recharge.

Human-centric spaces

The heart of every office design lies the people. Creating human-centric spaces means taking into account the different ways people work and interact, as well as their individual needs and preferences. Whether that’s through the use of biophilic design, ergonomic furnishings, or flexible space typologies that can be adapted to suit different tasks and work styles, the goal is always to create environments that support human well-being, neurodiversity and productivity, and actively work against burnout.

Increased use of AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) is likely to play a big role in the future of office design, and 2023 is likely to be the year that we see it start to have a significant impact. AI increases the opportunities for designers: from the use of AI-powered design tools to help create conceptual designs faster and more accurately, to the use of machine learning algorithms to analyse data on how people use space, AI is set to revolutionize the way we design and build workspaces, resulting in smarter, more efficient and more sustainable workspaces that are tailored to the needs of organisations.

Bolder design choices

Gone are the days of boring office spaces. Succeeding the Covid pandemic, designers focussed on creating spaces that had a calming atmosphere, through tonal colour palettes and neutral tones. However, In 2023 as it becomes more important to attract staff back into the office, we can expect to see more companies embracing bolder design choices through the use of features such as bright colours, innovative materials, or bold patterns. This is part of a larger trend toward creating workspaces that are not only functional, but also more inspiring, engaging and vibrant than ever before in order to spark creativity and better collaboration.

Sustainability lives on

Sustainability has been a hot topic in the office fitout industry for some time now, and it’s not going away any time soon. The UK have a pledge to hit net zero by 2050 – in actuality, 80% of the buildings that will be standing in 2050 have already been built! Therefore, in 2023 and going forwards, we can certainly expect to see an increasing emphasis on creating environmentally-friendly workspaces. This could be demonstrated in the use of materials or textures (for example timber, bamboo or mushroom leather), biophilia, a focus on air quality or many other things. Sustainable materials have not only functional qualities, but also play a big part in the aesthetics; natural products are trending more and more.

Encouraging culture and community

At the heart of the new office fitout trend is a focus on creating workspaces that encourage collaboration, culture, and community. This means designing spaces that encourage interaction and exchange between employees, whether by the water fountain or in the gym, the goal is to create an environment that supports teamwork and fosters a sense of community within the workplace. Culture is a hard word to define, but one delegate at our recent roundtable event described it as “something you talk about outside of work.” It cannot be defined by a policy or values, but is something that develops through interaction with others. Therefore, creating spaces that draw people together enabled them to further refine a positive workplace culture.

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In conclusion, the 2023 design trends for the office fitout industry are all about creating workspaces that are people-centric, sustainable, and focused on encouraging collaboration, community, and creativity. Whether it’s through bold design choices, innovative materials, or a focus on wellness and wellbeing, the goal is to create spaces that support human potential and drive business success.

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