Thanks to favourite sitcoms such as Ricky Gervais’s, appropriately named, ‘The Office’ and the equally endearing ‘The US Office’, as well as our personal experiences in an office environment, many of us associate the working life with artificial lighting, suffocatingly low ceilings and interiors that fail to inspire. However, with overwhelming evidence suggesting a direct correlation between the environment an individual is put in for 8 hours of their day with their levels productivity and overall contentment, many innovative working spaces have been springing up in cities around the globe. Bought into the spotlight more recently by the innovative design efforts of industry giants such as Google and Dropbox, it appears many companies are now striving to lose the ‘office’ stereotype and create a space employees actually want to be in for long lengths of time. With a range of studies supporting the benefits of investing wisely in space design, such as the survey carried out by Managment Today magazine suggesting that over 90% of those participating felt their place of work reflected how valued they were as employees, it seems that many employers are now seeking to build a community-based environment opposed to a space in which the workforce can’t wait to swiftly leave at 5pm.
Moving past the token pool table in the staff room or Friday drinks at the end of the working week companies are now seeking to market themselves as the most cutting-edge place to be employed by implementing a range of both inventive and slightly over the top office ‘perks’. This opinion is reflected in such expected additions to the average city workspace, such as the offering of an office gym, and free workout classes for employees to cater to the healthy living trend that continues to grow. As the concept that the atmosphere and the ambiance of a space have the ability to highly influence an individual’s mood and frame of mind, gains more acknowledgment from both employers and employees, many companies now pride themselves on providing an environment in which helps nurture their workers’ health from both the mental and physical perspectives. From interiors that are designed to simulate the comforts of the home-setting such at the appropriately modeled Air BnB London offices, to the imaginative, arguably brain stimulating Google offices which famously provides their employees with a range of elaborate office features, such as adult-sized slides, basketball courts, and even private live band gigs. It appears the archaic bounds of the traditional office space are now being made redundant as we step towards new design territory.
It could be said, without much doubt, that not only is the job market as competitive as ever for prospective employees, but the pressure is now also implemented on potential employers to acquire the most exceptional talent by ensuring that the working life they can offer will fulfil a much wider range of needs than just the traditional monetary need. An extremely encouraging notion for those who are battling through their 100th job application, refusing to give in to the tempting distractions of newest Netflix series. With some luck perhaps office innovation will be a trend that will continue to be reflected within the priorities set by companies around the world, and we can all begin to literally slide into our dream role.