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3 Design Trends Redefining How We Work
| 14 Oct

Office design has changed immensely over the years with the influence of advances in technology, the emergence of multi-functional environments and increased diversity. With these 3 major design trends shaping new directions in office design, we look at how they are redefining the way we work.

Advances in Technology

Present-day technologies revolve around the concept of the ‘internet of things’ where everyday devices including our mobile phones and smartwatches keep us connected with people and our surroundings. Now, interior designers Carlo Ratti, have taken the concept into the work place with the recent redesign of the Agnelli Foundation, a cultural institute in Turin, Italy.

Carlo Ratti’s design offers a workplace that synchronises to its users’ needs via sensors that measure data including temperature, CO2 concentration and the status of meeting rooms. The building system responds in real-time to adjustments made to lighting, heating and air-conditioning and employees can set their preferences using a smart phone app. The Agnelli Foundation project aims to foster new creativity and productivity in the office by combining smart technology with physical space.


In today’s modern age of office design, businesses have redesigned working environments into multi-functionality spaces whilst considering design elements that attract and retain talent. The need for multi-functionality is partly due to an increase in property prices although bigger corporations, such as Google, specifically design these spaces to create a more casual, playful and creative office environment.

Architects MVRDV’s recent redesign of their own office shows a clever balance between buzzy and quiet zones. The firm’s new design aims to resemble a family home by utilising warm and engaging colours with the use of quirky furniture, including an oversized dining table. Using the inspiration of ‘the home’, MVRDV has adapted traditional working spaces into more casual working environments with the aim to boost working methods.

Importance of Diversity

Developing teams of people of different age, gender, levels of education and social background helps to solve problems through a more diverse way of thinking. “Diversity in and of itself will help us work faster, smarter and deliver better outcomes” says Phil Gilbert, head of IBM Design.

Team diversity can increase creative output through a collaboration of varied talent and expertise. It can also act as a competitive advantage by creating a more attractive and inspirational business.

By Dawood Pathan

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