Psychology & office design: How new generations are shaping the places they work

Share

More than ever before, offices are being built with great consideration given to how the design will positively impact employees and the way in which they work.

Office space is a factor of business that many employers have, in the past, placed little significance on. If it’s cheap, in a good location and big enough for the workforce it was fine. Design hasn't always been a decisive element.

But the design of an office is becoming increasingly more important. According to Kelby Ergo Design (KED), almost 90 per cent of a person's time is spent indoors, and those employed outside of the home spend 33 per cent of their waking hours at their workplace.

At a time when the UK is experiencing a mental health crisis - one in four young women in UK have reported mental health problems, according to the Office for National Statistics - the wellbeing of employees should be a consideration of all businesses and employers. The physical and social aspects of an office can have a massive impact on the wellbeing of a person's health and poor working conditions can cause low performance, increased error rates, injuries and absences.

The psychology behind office design should consider the physical and mental effects it may have on its workers. Here, we take a look in a little more detail.

Design-thinking

Whether you’re a multi-million pound corporation or a small tech start-up, the slightest change in office design can boost productivity and help retain the best talent. Businesses across the UK are now opting for well-designed offices over cheap commercial space, because in the long-run, they can find themselves making great savings.

To cater to the demand of these new, digital and well-designed offices, there has been a shift in thinking by designers. This means considering things like; high-tech sensors that monitor environmental conditions like temperature, odours and sounds, break out areas for workers to relax, and office exercise classes like yoga to build on employees' emotional and physical wellbeing.

With the popularity and availability of wearable technology, biometric sensors are also able to provide employees with an insight into stress, boredom, poor posture and too much time spent in front of a screen. Moving into the future, the advancement of technology opens up the possibility of sensors that monitor emotions, heart rate and brain waves being introduced within the office.

A home-away-from-home

The traditional corporate office is becoming a thing of the past, with many businesses even adopting a home-away-from-home environment, where employees can work in a space where they feel comfortable. According to Tim Harford, economist and author of "The Undercover Economist", a tidy workspace isn't necessarily an effective one. He argues that it is not always the minimalism or the cluttered nature of a space that affects productivity, instead employees respond well to being given a choice about what to do with the spaces they work in.

When working in an office that is less formal and more comfortable, employees are likely to spend more time there because they don’t feel trapped. Bruntwood’s Whitehouse building plays on this home-away-from-home notion, recently having been refurbished to mimic the design of a residential property.

Not only this, many workers are also no longer having to spend hours sat behind a desk. Numerous companies are giving their employees the freedom to decide when and how they work, and as a result, they are happier, more productive, and view their employer as more innovative than competitors. This introduction of flexibility also means that the traditional 9-5 office hours are altering, and employees are working round their lifestyle, at times that suit them.

An experience

Millennials and Generation Z are quickly emerging in businesses across the globe, and their new attitude towards work means that office design is one of their most prevalent considerations. Unlike previous generations, the younger workforce are placing a high value on work-life balance, as they see their jobs as more of an experience, rather than something that just pays the bills.

With technology comes the ability to access emails, phone calls and work 24/7. Instead of separating work from personal life, offices are now focusing on how they integrate the two, by making the space as comfortable as possible.

As we move into the future, the possibilities for office design are endless. While no one can be sure of what the future may bring, what is certain is that the days of work cubicles, clinical settings and uncomfortable offices are being left behind.

Find out how we can help provide you with a great space where your business and your employees can thrive by visiting us at Prolific North Live this year. We're on stand 135, next to the keynote theatre. 

More Stories

News ·

20 June 2018

Customer stories: Manc Frank

News ·

18 June 2018

Our partners: Enabling Enterprise

News ·

15 June 2018

The benefits of serviced offices

News ·

14 June 2018

Should you be harnessing pop-up power?

News ·

07 June 2018

Customer story: Advantedge

News ·

06 June 2018

Creating a healthy working environment

News ·

29 May 2018

The changing shape of flexible workspace

News ·

23 May 2018

Customer story: FORM

News ·

17 May 2018

Our partners: City of Trees

News ·

16 May 2018

Managing stress at work

News ·

15 May 2018

Our partners: The Lemonade Project

News ·

30 April 2018

Our partners: A4 Studios

News ·

27 April 2018

Bruntwood sponsors Sound City+ for the first time

News ·

24 April 2018

The growth of the music industry in the North

News ·

23 April 2018

How is technology improving the workplace?

News ·

19 April 2018

Bruntwood sponsors Binary Festival

News ·

16 April 2018

Technology in the hospitality industry

News ·

12 April 2018

The ideal Platform for Leeds Digital Festival events

News ·

10 April 2018

Our partners: Seashell Trust

News ·

09 April 2018

The growth of digital technology in our great city regions

News ·

04 April 2018

Healthy cities, healthy world

News ·

23 March 2018

Creating retail spaces for businesses to succeed

News ·

21 March 2018

Binary Festival to help highlight the North's tech community

News ·

16 March 2018

Growing retail and amenity in cities

News ·

15 March 2018

What’s next for the ‘Northern Powerhouse’?

News ·

14 March 2018

Alderley Park: Find nowhere else like it

News ·

14 March 2018

The Natural Capital - A Green Revolution

News ·

14 March 2018

What makes for ‘world-class’ development and how can we reach and consistently achieve it?

News ·

14 March 2018

The importance of brand

News ·

13 March 2018

Northern tech powerhouse: What makes Manchester a driving force?

News ·

13 March 2018

Citylabs: A World Leading Digital and Precision Medicine Hub

News ·

12 March 2018

The importance of retail and amenity

News ·

09 March 2018

Buffalo 7 to host gathering at Binary Festival

News ·

08 March 2018

Pressing for Progress in the property sector and beyond

News ·

02 March 2018

'Sightlines': A day in the life of Manchester

News ·

27 February 2018

Office design: what can we expect to see this year?

News ·

27 February 2018

What to expect from MSP at Prolific North Live

News ·

26 February 2018

Customer stories: Manchester Digital

News ·

23 February 2018

Customer stories: LEAF

News ·

22 February 2018

Office design: the anti-trend

News ·

19 February 2018

Customer stories: LightStart

News ·

15 February 2018

Office design: creating spaces for people

News ·

09 February 2018

Office space design: Biophilla

News ·

08 February 2018

Creating spaces for communities and growth

News ·

07 February 2018

Our partners: Factory Youth Zone

News ·

05 February 2018

Customer stories: Kwizzbit

News ·

29 January 2018

Our partners: Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting

News ·

25 January 2018

Why 'Places Matter'

News ·

22 January 2018

Customer stories: Love Raw

News ·

08 January 2018

Customer stories: British Para-Swimming

News ·

22 December 2017

Bruntwood's cultural activity 2017

News ·

18 December 2017

Binary Festival brings together the North's digital and creative community

News ·

28 November 2017

5 top tips for great coworking etiquette

News ·

09 November 2017

How can coworking benefit your business?

News ·

01 November 2017

Coworking revolution brings business success

News ·

27 October 2017

Which office space is right for you?

News ·

14 May 2018

How office environment can impact your employees' mental health

News ·

27 September 2017

How is your workplace linked to staffing, innovation and growth

News ·

26 September 2017

Putting the new into Old Trafford

News ·

25 September 2017

Bruntwood backs Leeds 2023: European Capital of Culture bid

News ·

20 September 2017

Keep on moving - injecting energy into the workplace

News ·

20 September 2017

Flexible working goes beyond the city borders

News ·

19 September 2017

'The repositioning of retail places' - James Tootle, Surveyor

News ·

18 September 2017

8 ways to make the most of your commute

News ·

04 September 2017

Real Junk Food Manchester opens new site on Oxford Street

News ·

21 March 2017

Female entrepreneurs: Increasingly pushing the north's economy forward

News ·

18 October 2016

Low cost ways of keeping it fun in the office

News ·

18 April 2017

Move over millennials: What do Generation Z expect from the workplace?

News ·

28 March 2017

The rise of Leeds: The Uk's vibrant hub of culture

News ·

18 January 2017

Workplace trends for 2017

News ·

25 October 2016

Top reasons why businesses are moving to the north

News ·

10 February 2016

The future of workspaces

News ·

26 April 2016

City House redevelopment

News ·

07 April 2016

A new Platform for Leeds