New ways of working place new demands on the workplace
More than ever, the importance and design of office space is being discussed. Striving for innovation, creativity, problem-solving and efficiency while promoting the health, well-being and satisfaction of employees is key for many organisations. It is becoming increasingly important not only to retain, but also to attract new talents. Here, the office plays an important role as a carrier of culture, a place where the organisation’s image and values are reflected.
"The office as a meeting place is more important than ever – a hub for employees to meet and ideas to develop and grow. A lot of meetings can now be done digitally, but the real engagement, cultural building and creativity happens when we meet face-to-face. However, we must not forget that the office is also a place for individual focus and all of these parameters needs to be considered when designing an office,"
says Jenny Hörberg, Director Global Range & Design at Kinnarps.
The design of our offices was already changing before the pandemic, from traditional, personal desks to more flexible ways of working. The pandemic put everything to the test and new technology has given us more opportunities for how and where we work.
Five key principles for successful and sustainable work environments
So, what is the key to succeeding with your office? Having designed workplaces for more than 80 years, Kinnarps clarifies the concept knowing what is needed to succeed with office spaces. According to Kinnarps, there are five key principles that shape a successful and sustainable work environment.
1. Make sustainable choices for a good investment from several perspectives
2. Map out and analyse your needs – your prep work defines the end result
3. Design health-promoting environments with holistic ergonomics
4. Future-proof your office with flexible interior design solutions
5. Connect your physical and digital offices
Sustainability, for good investment
Having a sustainable mindset and making sustainable choices are givens for most people today, but what does it actually mean when you are choosing your interior design?
If you look at sustainability from the perspective of people, the environment and economy, sustainable office environments mean looking at the total life cycle of your interior design and choosing high-quality interiors that can last a long time.
"We challenge the concept of circularity and say that it is important to invest in sustainable circularity. This is done by consciously choosing high-quality and flexible solutions with an interior design that can be updated to further extend its life cycle. The longer the life cycle, the lower its environmental impact,"
says Ann Cederwall, Director of Global Marketing & Communications at Kinnarps.
Your prep work defines the end result
When making changes to the workplace, the organisation must base its work on its vision, values and specific needs. Time and thought in the beginning of your project lays the foundation for success.
“The activities and needs in a workplace needs to be mapped and analysed. Here, it´s very important to get active support and participation from the management team. From the hundreds of workplace analyses we have carried out, the most important we have learned is that the prep work defines the end result,” says Henrik Axell, Head of Workplace Strategy at Kinnarps.
Health-promoting environments with holistic ergonomics
A variety of factors affect how you feel and perform, so it is important to consider the ergonomic whole. Holistic ergonomics is about the overall experience of an environment, physical, organisational and social.
Factors such as colour, acoustics and noise are important when creating a good and health-promoting environment. The actual layout of the office needs to support diverse work situations. There should be spaces for individual work that requires a deep level of focus, for spontaneous creative meetings between a few people, for individuals joining a digital meeting and for traditional large physical meetings.
Flexible interior design solutions
Many employers say, “We need to be flexible.” But what does this actually mean? One way to explain the concept is to divide it into three levels: daily, short-term and long-term flexibility, and to consider what your particular organisation needs.
The office interior needs to be equipped with flexible and multifunctional furniture that can be used, changed or updated according to different needs. It is partly a matter of changing the furniture on a daily basis to suit different activities, and partly a matter of being able to vary the interior design over time based on needs that arise.
Connect the physical and digital office
To maintain efficiency and productivity, it is important that organisations connect the physical office to the digital office. When planning their interior design, organisations need to identify the types of meetings they have and how many of these are physical, digital and hybrid meetings. Varying degrees of confidentiality also need to be accommodated for.
Again, it’s a matter of organisational needs and facilitating operations through the interior’s function, design and placement.
For more information about designing workplaces in a hybrid world, see Kinnarps' article Office of the future – Five key principles that shape a successful and sustainable work environment, which can be downloaded from kinnarps.com/knowledge
Kinnarps will be participating in the Stockholm Furniture Fair, February 7-11 in Stockholm International Fairs and Congress Centre (Stockholmsmässan), Hall A, Stand A16:18.
For more details about our view on workplace design and offices of the future, please contact:
Jenny Hörberg, Director Global Range & Design, Kinnarps AB
E-mail: email@example.com, phone: +46 (0)761-04 28 41
Henrik Axell, Head of Workplace Strategy, Kinnarps AB
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, phone: +46 (0)703–59 98 51
Ann Cederwall, Director of Global Marketing & Communications, Kinnarps AB
E-mail: email@example.com, phone: +46 (0)706-01 81 50
For other media enquiries, please contact:
Kristina Hjalmarsson, Press contact Kinnarps AB
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, phone: +46 (0)706-38 52 87
Kinnarps AB is one of Europe’s leading suppliers of interior design solutions and workplace design for offices, schools and care environments. Our furniture is characterised by high quality, innovative design, low environmental impact and long life cycles. 2021/2022 the Group turnover was 3.8 billion SEK. Most of the manufacturing takes place at five locations in Sweden; Kinnarp, Jönköping, Skillingaryd, Vinslöv and Tranås. The Group includes the brands Kinnarps, Materia, Skandiform, NC Nordic Care, Drabert and MartinStoll. Kinnarps was founded in 1942 and is still family owned.