Fashion changes and new trends emerge, living styles adjust to the modern world, and similarly, technology advancements affect the way we work and design our offices.
Technology creates more flexibility
Most technology is becoming wireless, which has created an immense amount of flexibility in the ways we work and design the furniture we work at. For example, laptops are small, lightweight, and portable. Desks don’t need to be nearly as large as was necessary in the past, and cordless abilities allow people to carry their laptops anywhere to change-up the scenery. New places in the office, such as collaboration rooms and wellness areas, are gaining popularity because of these new possibilities that laptops offer.
However, we are currently playing a game with cords. While most technology is wireless, we also need places that we can recharge batteries when they are running low. So, designers are tasked with solving how outlets can stay easily accessible in modern design without taking away from the style and aesthetic of the furniture and room.
Connect remote employees with in-office employees
Adjusting to the post-COVID-19 era, many designers are focusing on designing for the home office. Global Workplace Analytics estimates that 56% of U.S. employees hold jobs that are compatible with remote work, and forecasts that 25-30% of the workforce will be working from home multiple days a week by the end of 2021. This is a jump from where America has been, hovering around 3.5% of people working from home half-time or more.
However, this leaves upwards of 70% of employees still in the office, and the need for collaboration did not simply evaporate. This means that the increased number of employees working from home actually heightens the need to update conference rooms and areas in the corporate office so that all employees can easily communicate.
Therefore, designers will need to utilize the advanced technology to pair office furniture with video conferencing capabilities in order to create seamless teamwork. It is no doubt that additional ideas are already being created and furniture design and technology will soar in new directions.
Smart phone apps change the game
Just about every person carries a smart phone with them that contains significant power. Even that technology that follows you in your pocket plays a considerable role in modern furniture design. The abilities are impressive – with even the simplest of apps allowing customers to design a room based on the furniture of their choice or connecting to the electronics throughout a house to power them on and off.
The possibilities are endless
From adding voice technology to furniture, interacting with wearable technology, and the introduction of artificial intelligence and augmented reality, the possibilities for office design are endless.
If you find your company searching for innovative ideas and someone to help you create them, turn to OMT-Veyhl. We pride ourselves on the tight integration of our research, design, engineering, and manufacturing teams. The collaboration between designers, engineers, and equipment operators enables rapid innovation to develop manufacturing-ready prototypes in record time.
The industry today
Take a look at these already existing products to see how the industry is designing with and for technology today.
Laptop Mount from Herman Miller: https://www.hermanmiller.com/products/accessories/technology-support/laptop-mount/
The Laptop Mount lifts notebook computers off the work surface, allowing workers to adopt better postures and avoid eyestrain. In addition, this mount clears valuable desktop space; however, it does require an external keyboard and mouse.
Power Outlet from Herman Miller: https://www.hermanmiller.com/products/accessories/power-access/logic-g1000/
This product is available in several widths and combinations of simplex receptacles and USB charging ports. Its ability to fold into the desk allows for a sleek design when the outlets aren’t in use.
Workware from Haworth: https://www.haworth.com/products/technology/collaboration/workware
Workware products feature adaptable technology solutions for collaboration and sharing, regardless of participants’ physical location or device used. These products are available cabled or wireless.
Standalone Wire Manager from OMT-Veyhl:
The Stand-Alone Wire Manager stands detached from any table or desk and offers wire management with the option of hardwired power. Its simple design makes it easy to pair with any system or office configuration at any time.
Steelcase Rise from Steelcase:
Lastly, Steelcase Rise syncs with height-adjustable desks and benches featuring Active Touch controllers for personalized well being in the workplace.