Image of Thomas Cook HQ meeting room with glass wall with opaque vinyl and digital wall graphics

2016 is predicted to continue 2015’s trend for high quality office design refurbishment projects due to the continued shortage of new build office space on the market.

Space-pod, a leading office design agency, is recommending that utilising space differently is essential to re-work offices to suit current and future needs. Recently space-pod increased the capacity of a clients’ office to enable them to employ 380 additional staff and create over 650 further meeting spaces without the need to move to larger premises.

“We cannot predict that office needs will not change for the next 10 years. Quite the opposite, we are now certain that they will. Therefore space needs to be flexible and the key to future proofing is intelligent, creative planning,” says Kevin Parker, CEO, space-pod.

PLANNING IS KEY

It used to be that an internal office refurbishment would only take place every decade or so. Needs therefore were pretty static. Right now, commercial space management is more difficult with the shortage of office space and the cost attached.

Today’s needs are for break out areas, eroding the concept of a desk or work area personal to an individual. However, predicting future needs can be more difficult. What does this mean for someone planning an office refurbishment?

  • > Companies look to refresh current premises rather than invest in larger offices
  • When space is at a shortage utilising it effectively is key
  • Flexibility and planning is essential for future-proofing
  • Space-pod increases existing client’s space eight-fold with layout re-work

“At space-pod, we have experience of how to design and execute these spaces. Whilst the specific design will be bespoke to any organisation there are specific concepts that work and can be applied, so looking at what other businesses have found successful, and what has not worked, would be essential homework,” continues Parker.

“This all works well for today’s needs however, it is harder to determine what the near future will hold and whether the office needs will continue to serve the business over the next decade. Thus, the returns on the investment in office space can be short term unless some flexibility is built into the design. It is essential to cater for change in the use of the space over time. This means that any structures need to be adaptable, allowing changes in use that can be adapted easily.

It is best practice to ensure flexibility of the finished design in order to adapt over the long term. If the use of AI and off site cloud based computing prevail, the work space will need to be a more transitional environment, suitable for more human interaction and inspiration.”