Top 10 Interior Office Design Trends in 2023
Each year, subtle changes in the business world create shifts in the most recent trends in office interior design. In 2023, the return to a more comfortable, inviting workplace that is safer and more homelike drives many of these trends. By incorporating some of these interior office design trends, your workplace becomes more enticing to new recruits, welcoming to returning workers and comforting to those who have worked for years in the space.
1. Collaborative Office Design
A key factor in modern office interior design is the openness of workplace plans. Having fewer dividers between workers stimulates interactivity and collaboration on projects. Improved collaboration is essential for research and development departments and other creative teams that require face time with others to discuss ideas spontaneously.
Collaborative offices tend to avoid including multiple private office spaces and closed-off conference rooms. Instead, a centralized planning spot for meetings puts brainstorming sessions amid work areas. This allows for easy access to the people and ideas discussed. Anyone can chip in with ideas, enriching the discussion by bringing several opinions to the session.
However, not everyone will want to work in a completely open office. To make the most of the workplace, open office spaces require flexibility for workers who need private places to work. A collaborative office design includes individual work areas within the plan, such as workstations or pods located in quieter areas of the office, away from the discussion sites. These smaller spaces for solo work included in an open office plan ensure a balance between ways to work together and alone.
The added benefit of an open plan design is reduced construction costs for the office. With fewer private, walled-in offices, the floorspace requires less drywall, reducing overall construction costs and time.
2. Active Workplace With Ergonomic Interior Office Design
Ergonomic interior design reduces strain on workers and can lower the chances of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs). The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries examined the cost to benefits of adding ergonomic elements to the office design. From 40 reports of offices using ergonomic design, the study found a decrease in injuries from WMSDs by 61% and a drop in turnover by 87%. Absenteeism and errors also fell while productivity increased.
Ergonomic design ensures the support of the body in its most natural position while working to reduce strain on muscles. However, remaining active is also vital while at work to lower the strain caused by sitting all day. Therefore, active and ergonomic furnishings are increasingly popular in modern office interior design.
Active options include elements that keep workers moving.
- Treadmill desks
- Ball chairs
- Bike chairs
- Sit-stand chairs
- Adjustable height desks for use while standing or sitting
- Standing mats
Active elements keep workers from sitting still or in the same position for too long, which can cause muscle stress and strain. Options such as bike chairs and treadmill desks promote movement even while working on a computer to reduce the impacts of a sedentary desk job and improve overall health.
By reducing WMSDs in workers and encouraging movement through ergonomic and active furnishings, offices can keep their workers healthier and lower the time taken off for injuries.
3. Flexibility at Work
One thing that many workplaces have discovered in the last few years is the need to be as flexible as possible for workers to contribute from home offices. Flexible work locations appeal to people who may want to cut childcare costs or reduce commuting expenses by working from home. Part-time remote working still keeps employees connected with others at the office several times a week, so they gain collaboration opportunities while benefiting from working from home.
Working From Home
Even with many offices reopening and welcoming workers back, other workplaces are only increasing their offerings for working from home, either part or full-time. For example, Zillow, an online marketplace for real estate, announced that 90% of its workforce would have the option of working from home. Many other companies are following suit, providing remote work as a permanent option for new and existing workers.
Offices that offer remote work still need to consider how those employees will connect with others at the office, either through online meetings, phone conferences or visiting the office in person occasionally.
Making Work Look More Homelike
For the transition from remote working to going back to the office, many workers want a more homelike atmosphere at work. This year’s trends in office interior design will include softening the atmosphere with residential design elements, such as:
- Open shelving
- Framed artwork
- Floor lamps
- Coffee tables
These subtle but familiar changes can help make employees more comfortable. Sofas, lounge chairs, softer lighting and wood flooring can add warmth to a workspace and make it feel more homelike. Ensuring your interior office furniture architecture reflects these comfortably homelike spaces can make your employees feel happier and more relaxed.
4. Architectural Interiors With Pods or Booths for Privacy
Interior office furniture architecture trends, such as installing pods and booths, are useful ways to add privacy in open areas and create spaces for quiet work. These pods may have walls or dividers to enclose the workspace, but they are typically not as large as private offices or as open as cubicles. They may have comfortable sofas and coffee tables to encourage small group collaboration or a more homelike place for a single employee to work privately. Pods often feature:
- Desk space and seating: Pods often feature small spaces away from the rest of the office. However, they should have enough room for employees to work alone or in a smaller group, as well as soft seating. Pods should also have enough desk space and seating for a single worker or a small group to provide flexibility in the workspace.
- Charging stations: Pods or booths must also have outlets for laptop charging and good Wi-Fi connectivity.
- Soundproofing: Some pods will provide even more privacy by offering soundproof spaces for confidential meetings or phone calls. This way, employees may hold meetings and talk to one another in a convenient, secure manner.
An alternative to pods is using wheeled desks and small seats that easily move together for meetings or pull apart to quieter spaces for individual working. You could also incorporate moveable walls and room dividers to create smaller booths or meeting areas. Desk pods can allow three to four workers to collaborate on one project, encouraging teamwork without disruptions from the rest of the office.
The versatility of these interior office furniture architecture choices can allow settings to be scaled up or down with ease. With hybrid and remote work popular today, offices will want to integrate booths and pods to accommodate a fluctuating headcount in 2023. Rather than maintain the open layouts of the past, these new features can support the emerging needs of both in-office and remote workers.
5. Wallcoverings and Living Walls
Walls in modern office spaces are no longer stark white. Wallcoverings may display colors or images that reflect the values and features of the company. Accent walls turn a single white wall in a room into a colored one, providing a burst of color without overwhelming the eyes. These accent walls can use color psychology to excite workers or encourage concentration.
A design trend from last year that will likely continue into 2023 is the use of bold peel-and-stick wallpaper. It works exactly as it claims — just peel and stick the wallpaper to your office walls. Painting and traditional wallpaper can be costly and time-consuming to install. Peel-and-stick options let you experiment with a new color or bold pattern as often as you’d like without the hassle. You might try whatever styles represent your company best. Trendy 2023 wall coverings include:
- Geometric patterns
- Landscape scenery
- Abstract shapes
- Elegant prints
- Floral patterns
- Bold colors and prints
- Faux texture
Another way to enhance walls and add a softer touch is by installing living walls. These interior gardens bring indoor office plants away from potted ficus trees in corners and turn them into visual focal points for rooms. Green walls integrate into biophilic office design and are perfect for workplaces that don’t have views of the greenery outside.
Whether using a single color, corporate image or green wall, adding color to workspaces with wallcoverings can improve the visual aesthetics of a space and enhance worker morale.
6. Sustainability and Nature in the Office
Biophilic workplaces, or those that incorporate natural elements in the building’s design, often utilize living walls. Plant or water walls and other natural building elements can enhance the feeling of bringing nature indoors.
Living plants require care, and workers can take needed breaks from their tasks to tend to the plants. Caring for plants can break up the stress of work and benefit employees’ health and mental wellness. Having living plants in the office improves air quality through plant photosynthesis, reduces noise by softening hard walls and floors and boosts productivity.
Green building does not mean including only plants around the office. Sustainable office design practices start with the materials used in the site’s construction. Choosing materials from local sources reduces the impact of emissions created from transporting the building goods to the site. Other sustainable practices include:
- Maximizing energy efficiency
- Increasing the use of natural lighting
- Choosing low-emissions furnishings and construction materials.
A great thing about acting with environmental sustainability in mind is that you can become more energy efficient while saving money. For example, you might replace your fluorescent lights with LED lightbulbs. Installing motion-activated light switches could also keep electric bills low. Rather than relying on employees to turn lights off and on as they enter or exit, these lights will save energy automatically. They can also do well for conference rooms since they are often separated from the central office space and used less frequently.
Sustainability reduces the office’s impact on the environment while saving money on utilities and operations.
7. Light Colors and Natural Lighting
Natural lighting and light wall colors are trends in office interior design that are sure to persist in 2023. Lighter colors, such as grays, neutrals and greens, enhance the natural feel of an office. Colors displayed in a workplace can also impact productivity through color psychology and create different zones in the office for different types of thinking. The following are how colors might impact how we feel:
- Grays connect to impressions of style, sophistication, productivity, functionality and simplicity.
- Green colors bring to mind nature, peacefulness, serenity, calmness and comfort.
- An orange accent wall in a collaborative working area can promote creativity.
- Blue is a good color for lounge areas as it encourages relaxation and calmness.
Natural lighting from skylights, windows or other sources allows for more growth of indoor plants. Studies show natural light in the office can also boost your employees’ moods and productivity. Workers in an environment with plenty of natural light had reduced eyestrain, headaches and blurred vision. Natural light also translates to more alert employees and less drowsiness.
Natural light also can reduce energy use for lighting and provide a softer alternative to harsh indoor fluorescent lights. However, not all offices have large windows or access to natural light, especially sites in the interiors of office buildings. For such spaces, using diffused light, choosing natural-looking artificial lighting and using non-reflective surfaces can lower the glare of indoor lighting and make the light in the area feel more natural.
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8. Mixing Old With New
Combining old with new can create a balance between comfortable classic designs and trendy modern styles. Current office trends pair past and present design elements for a unique look. For example, using wood office furniture in a modern space can integrate the trend of blending old and new without dedicating resources fully to either. Other examples include:
- Mixing flooring: Interior office furniture architecture that involves mixing old and new might be incorporating a retro-inspired patterned area rug on top of more modern-looking concrete flooring.
- Adding pops of color: You could add old desks or tables alongside brightly colored accessories, such as chairs or sofas.
- Mixing patterns: Designers are also opting for retro and geometric patterns such as herringbone and chevron designs. You might feature geometric patterns across your office floors and walls or display bright pops of color alongside tones of ivory and gray.
- Combining metals: Other trendy “old and new” design elements include mixing brass, stone and industrial retro metals.
Balance when mixing old and new is just as important as it is when combining open office design spaces with individual workstations. This careful consideration for using two different elements is critical to many aspects of modern office interior design.
9. Technology and Data Connectivity
Technology is the cornerstone for many offices today. Whether integrating additional outlets so workers can use their laptops in various locations or allowing greater flexibility to access online meetings from home, upgrading technology and data connectivity is essential to overall office design and worker morale.
Adding or expanding wireless network connectivity and including several contactless options for operations make workers feel safe and more productive after spending years of social distancing. Technology trends for the year include:
Designated Technological Spaces
The technology in office spaces needs to allow those in-office and working remotely to collaborate effortlessly. Such connectivity may require special conference rooms for online meetings with electronic equipment to enhance discussions online. For some offices, upgrades may include spaces for using augmented and virtual reality equipment.
With a growing number of employees in remote positions, companies are promoting health and safety with tech upgrades such as contactless technology. These updates will only continue in 2023. Automated light switches and taps can reduce physical contact in the office, as can using apps or voice technology to schedule meetings and tasks. By allowing employees to schedule meetings and online spaces through mobile apps, everyone will have equal access to the office through their phones.
Another trend of 2023 is utilizing collaboration technology. For instance, Google Chat is popular in offices as it allows employees to chat and share files easily. Businesses that consolidate their technologies and create a one-stop-shop platform can allow employees to work from anywhere and quickly communicate as needed. These platforms ensure company information, files and documents can be coordinated smoothly.
10. Lounge Spaces Reflecting the Company’s Values
Lounge design trends include creating spaces that reflect elements of the company’s operations and values. Instead of sparse places for workers to microwave frozen dinners, today’s offices have lounge areas that more closely resemble rec rooms.
Including games in the lounge space can provide much-needed breaks from the day’s tasks and give workers’ eyes a rest from screen time. These active games also allow employees to socialize with each other naturally and can ease stress by burning off tension:
- Air hockey
- Table tennis
- Card games
- Board games
- Pool table
- Video game consoles
Other elements of modern lounge areas include spaces for workers to relax. Interior office furniture architecture that’s comfortable, such as couches or even nap rooms, give employees places to find calm during their workday. Quiet lounge rooms with reduced lighting and noise can also benefit employees who may need such spaces at work.
While providing a place for fun and relaxation, lounge areas are also places where the company can use its main color scheme or put images on the walls. These elements may include information about the history or culture of the company to create an impression of belonging for current employees or build excitement for prospective workers touring the facility.
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Contact WB Wood to Incorporate These Trends Into Your Office
A better-designed workplace makes the office a more pleasant place for full-time in-office workers, remote workers and those with flexible schedules. Upgrading an office interior design with the latest trends may improve productivity and employee satisfaction. Get the latest trends incorporated into your office. If you need extra help designing your workspace, WB Wood is a furniture service provider that can assist you with your office space design and architectural needs.
Contact us today to set up a consultation for our office furniture procurement or office interior space design services.