Progressive office design

The Future of Office Design

With a worldwide pandemic that rocked nearly every industry in the world, offices everywhere shut down temporarily, or in some cases, for good. With such a dramatic shift in working conditions for office workers, office design in 2021 looks radically different from trends we have seen in the past.

At Norwest Contractors, we help local businesses across multiple industries design and build the perfect spaces for their clients and workforce. When it comes to office design in Portland and across the country, we have noticed several trends in place that point toward the kind of office design we might expect to see in the next decade.

In this article, we’re detailing the top office design trends of 2021. Keep reading to learn which areas of office design have been impacted the most by the pandemic and how a little creativity and flexibility go a LONG way in modern office design these days.

Workers on laptops in office

Top 2021 Office Design Trends

Acoustic Furniture

One of the advantages to working from home is the ability to block out noise, listen to music, and have full control over acoustics. In a traditional office environment, this isn’t the case. However, with the rise in popularity of acoustic furniture, this work-from-home luxury can now be found in modern office settings.

Acoustic furniture most often refers to worker pods that include panels on the back and sides that help block out noise and other distractions. Adjustable seating and table heights make them easily customizable for individual workers.

Flexible Work Spaces

As more corporate office spaces opened back up in 2021, a lot of companies gave their workforce the option to either return to the office or continue working from home. Others opted for a hybrid schedule, where workers divide their time between work from home days and in-person meetings and work hours.

For companies that follow a hybrid schedule, a flexible office design is imperative. Since not all workers will be there every day, desks can be shared by multiple employees. Sharing desks, however, requires some logistics and flexibility.

The future of office design will include interior design elements that serve multiple different work styles and preferences. For example, standing desks that can also convert into conventional desks work great for employees that prefer to stand and those that prefer to sit.

Workers around conference table in modern office

All the Technological Bells & Whistles

If technology wasn’t already a staple for most offices across the country, it will be now. Technology allows us to streamline everyday processes more efficiently, especially when it comes to customer service.

The use of tablets and other devices may become more widespread, as they allow workers the freedom to move and meet with clients in separate, socially distanced locations within the same building while bringing all the information with them that they need.

Companies across the country now also rely more heavily on collaborative apps and programs to work in teams to complete projects. You can expect to communicate and collaborate through technology, whether you are an employee or a consumer.

Outdoor Meetings

If you are back at the office, it is likely that your typical meeting spaces will look a little different. When the weather is nice, expect to have meetings outdoors or under covered patio spaces. By taking work outdoors, workers not only experience a boost in creativity and productivity but also maintain better social distancing.

Office setup with modern design

Environmental Awareness

For 2021 and beyond, you can expect office design to include sustainable or green materials. Environmentally-friendly materials are not only better for the environment, but more sustainable to work with in the long run. Companies can feel good about implementing green materials into their office design plans whenever possible.

Relaxed Working Environments

Expect to see an increase in comfortable seating, including plush couches and cozy armchairs. Office design is shifting towards a more personable vibe, rather than a stiff and static. You may conduct or attend more meetings in the coming years that are centered around coffee tables or with bistro-style seating.

Uncomfortable meeting rooms and working environments don’t serve anyone well, especially when they induce anxiety or unnecessary seriousness. You can expect office design in 2021 to invoke a sense of ease and relaxation — which we all could use more of!

Open office space design

The Future of Office Design Starts Here | Portland, OR

If you are looking to create and build the perfect office design in Portland, get in touch with our team today! We are eager to help local businesses get back on their feet with revamped office designs that are not only visually appealing but perfect for safe social distancing and other guidelines.

With Norwest, the perfect details of your office design are right at your fingertips! Join us in the Norwest Design Lab, where you can see, feel, touch, and experience a wide range of finishes and materials. With all the design elements you need in one place, along with our team of professionals ready to help, your office design comes together without a hitch! Schedule a consultation to come see our Design Lab for yourself.

For some inspiration and a peek into our past projects, give our Portfolio Page a visit. Also, be sure to check out our other blog articles linked below to help you as you pursue your next great office design or remodel:

7 Tips for Starting a Commercial Construction Project
Building Design with Social Distancing in Mind
How-To Build an Office Space that Will Increase Productivity

Start your office design and remodel with Norwest by clicking HERE!