2022 is upon us and we’re looking forward to the year ahead! In this blog post we share the workplace design and fitout trends to look out for over the next 12 months and beyond.
2021 has shown us that, sadly, Covid-19 isn’t going anywhere soon. At the start of the pandemic, we thought we’d be returning to normal in just a few weeks or months. Two years on and with new variants emerging, it’s clear that the world we find ourselves in now IS our normal. This means the need for flexible office design is more important now than ever.
In 2022, we predict that businesses that made temporary changes to their buildings due to the pandemic will start to more permanent changes. Even if we do see the back of Covid-19 in the next year, we’ve experienced the impact that it can have. It’s important that employers are prepared for and able to respond similar events in future.
With hybrid working becoming the preferred way of working, the role of the office is starting to change. Offices are gradually becoming creative spaces for teamwork and innovation, rather than a place to complete day-to-day tasks. As a result, coming into the office is now seen as more of an ‘experience’. Employees want to combine their trip with other activities. Office location will therefore be a key concern in 2022.
Research shows that job seekers are increasingly looking for roles with both home working opportunities and a central location close to public amenities such as shops, restaurants and gyms. Many employers are already concerned about the ‘Great Resignation’ and attracting and retaining talent. We therefore predict businesses with multiple locations will move towards one central office location in 2022 and beyond.
Different forms of flexible working have been gaining popularity for a few years now and 2022 is no different. This year, we predict a rise in the ‘office hotel’ model.
Office hotelling is like hotdesking but has a couple of key differences. Firstly, there are no fixed desks or areas whatsoever – all employees have equal access to all spaces in the office. Secondly, it operates on a flexible booking system. Areas can be booked in advance for varying lengths of time. There’s no requirement to spend a full or half day in the office, as is often the case with hotdesking. It also means staff can move around and work in different areas of the office throughout the day if they wish, rather than being confined to one seat.
Businesses wanting to adopt office hotelling will need to adapt their office design to incorporate a range of different environments. They’ll also need to invest in a robust booking system to avoid double-bookings and mix ups. In return, office hotelling encourages collaboration, improve productivity and save money in the long term. Providing fair access to office areas and facilities boosts company culture too.
The world of work is changing. Not only do more employees want hybrid working, they want to be able to work outside of ‘normal’ hours too. Another workplace trend to look out for in 2022 is the rise of the 24-hour office building. This isn’t about staff being encouraged to work more, instead workers access the office when it suits them. Flexible working at its finest.
This does, of course, come with its challenges. To make this work, office spaces will need to be highly tech-enabled. Buildings will be fit out with simple but secure access arrangements and sensor-based technologies to conserve energy and save money. For the safety of your employees and your building, employers are going to want to know who has been into the office and when. Many companies will turn to mobile aps and other technology solutions that enable employees to quickly sign-in to the office and check who else is in the building.
2022 is set to be an exciting year for office design and fitout, as more and more businesses look to adapt and change their buildings to reflect our new world of work. If you’re ready to make the change, get in touch. We’d love to help you get your spaces ready for the new year!