Think tanks, flexible office space, shared workspaces and working from home: Modern office concepts are adapting quickly to digitalization and to the changing world of work. These days, the classic, individual office is a relic of a working style that has long since disappeared. Instead, companies are adapting – and are instead investing in open office concepts. In the age of “New Work,” the office is a meeting place for social exchange, which has immense implications for the design of office space. Think tanks, desk sharing and open space offices are designed to foster collaboration and productivity. In this article, we present modern office concepts that could be well-suited to your company.
Modern office concepts at a glance
1.) Open space Office concept
2.) Team offices
3.) Modern office concept with cellular offices
4.) Desk sharing
5.) Combi office
6.) Reversible offices
7.) Coworking spaces
Innovative office concepts: We offer these six options
Modern offices are fundamentally characterized by their flexibility. Companies are paying increasing attention to ensuring that office space is suitable for different user or team configurations. Room dividers and flexible partitions are extremely useful when it comes to rapidly changing configurations. In addition to individual and cubicle offices, there are also new concepts for today’s office requirements. In the following sections, we provide you with examples of modern office concepts.
1) Open space office concept
An open space officeis also referred to as an open office and originally comes from the U.S. Transparency is the decisive concept in open offices. Fixed walls are dispensed with so that the resulting openness of the space can be freely adapted to the working processes. For meetings, there are usually a number of stations with small tables and seating. Lounge areas are also included in the concept to create spaces for social exchange.
Advantages of open space offices
- Unconfined work: The elimination of fixed walls breaks down barriers in the mind, allowing employees to work more freely. The open workspace also promotes cross-team working methods.
- Communication: By eliminating walls and closed doors, open plan offices provide for quick exchange among colleagues.
- Flexibility: Instead of chamber-like partitions between workstations, open space offices use furniture such as sofas or tables to create an area for meetings. The furniture can easily be rearranged for different purposes, providing companies with added flexibility.
2) Team offices
Team offices are organized in a similar way to open space concepts in terms of room layout. However, only individual teams and departments work here and not the entire company. As a rule, up to 25 employees work in a group office. The adjustable partition walls simplify alterations depending on group size. Ideally, team offices also have meeting spaces as well as places for relaxation and contemplation.
The advantages of team offices
- Efficient communication: Employees can quickly exchange information with each other, so that all those involved in the work are better informed about the current project status.
- Team work: Creative teams in particular can benefit from spontaneous idea development without having to leave their workspace.
- Time savings: Brief discussions or meetings can be held on the spot, making such interactions far more efficient.
3) Office concept with cellular offices
The term cellular offices is used to describe a traditional office concept from times when large open spaces weren’t practical from an architectural perspective. They are small rooms that provide space for individuals or small teams. As a rule, the workspaces are located along the exterior of the building, with windows facing outside. This provides employees with daylight when working and creates a long corridor in the middle of the office from which all the rooms and workstations are accessible. These days, cellular offices serve as useful complements to open space offices, providing quiet refuges in a certain area of an office building. Accordingly, cellular offices are also an element of modern office concepts.
Advantages of office concepts that include cellular offices
- Concentration: The cellular office enables concentrated work without noise pollution and distraction. Depending on the nature of the work, this is a decisive advantage for most employees.
- Data privacy: Anyone who works with sensitive data is subject to special data protection regulations, which state, among other things, that employees require undisturbed space. In a cellular office, a third party is less likely to be able to see sensitive data.
- Lighting conditions: Cellular offices are usually located on the sides of buildings, allowing employees to enjoy the benefits of daylight.
4) Desk sharing concepts
With desk sharing, employees don’t have a fixed desk, but rather a number of shareable workspaces. This helps prevent situations in which a large number of workspaces go unused due to vacations or absences. A shared desk concept is designed to be an open work environment where employees are presented with different workspaces for individual development. This modern office concept includes quiet individual rooms for focused work and small telephone booths for longer business conversations. This office concept also provides spaces that allow colleagues to collaborate.
Advantages of desk sharing
- Space saving: The conscious use of desk sharing ensures that fewer workspaces are needed. This saves the company space that can be used for other purposes.
- Collaboration: This office concept makes quick team meetings easy and facilitates efficient collaboration.
- Efficient room layout: Desk sharing enables the efficient allocation of space, providing employees with greater opportunities for collaborative activities.
5) Modern combi office concepts
Combi offices are also modern office concepts that include individual office spaces on the exterior of the building. The crucial difference here is that the hallway is a common area. Combi offices have emerged to provide solutions to the isolated work environment of cellular offices or the noise associated with open plan offices. In modern combi-office concepts, the walls are usually glazed to allow enough daylight to shine into the common area. The common area can include meeting spaces, meeting lounges, coffee vending machines, break areas and temporary workstations.
Advantages of modern combi office concepts
- No isolation: Most people don’t like working alone for longer periods of time. The glass walls allow for collaborative work that preserves a team feeling.
- Concentrated work: Even though the idea of community is presented in modern combi office concepts, they also provide a quiet environment for concentrated work.
- Individuality: Compared to the open-space office concept, workers can adjust the light or room temperature in their individual office space as they desire.
6) Reversible offices
A modernly interpreted, reversible office concept can be changed spontaneously to provide ideal working conditions for project teams whose composition can change quite quickly. Reversible offices require a large area so that the movable office components can be rearranged as needed at any time. Office furniture also has special purposes to fulfil. The concept requires desks that can be transformed into a conference or break table in the blink of an eye. The following elements are relevant to modern and reversible office concepts:
- Movable screen elements
- Easily moveable tables
- Rolling storage units
- Movable partitions or lightweight walls
- Height-adjustable tables
- Stools that can be arranged to form a larger seating area
Advantages of reversible offices
- Adaptable working environment: New project teams can transform the working environment in a short amount of time and get started with the project.
- Fit for the future: Due to its flexibility, the reversible office likely holds the most promise for the future. In new building projects, architects often give consideration to this modern office concept.
- Space saving: The variable configurations for the tables results in enormous space savings. This allows companies to dispense with dedicated conference rooms or meeting lounges.
7) Coworking Spaces
These days, many companies dispense altogether with fixed offices where all employees come together. Remote work is becoming increasingly popular, and some companies are hiring people who live further away. This makes doing their jobs from home the norm for many workers. In these cases, one option for ensuring that private and professional life do not overlap in a single place is the coworking space. They offer flexible, rentable desks and a casual office atmosphere that helps promote focused work. Coworking spaces can be used not only by individual employees or freelancers – shared desks or office space can also be rented for an entire team at providers like Office Club. This helps companies save on costly outlays for office equipment, electricity, etc.
More tips for your modern office concept
A modern office concept is based not only on particular seating arrangements and room layouts – the overall office design also plays a decisive role. Height-adjustable tables, for example, are important for improved ergonomics in the workplace. It is also important to purchase office furniture from regional manufacturers. This ensures lower CO₂ emissions during transport. Nutritious snacks and exercise activities for the whole team are also important for healthy and nurturing teamwork.
In conclusion, a quick overview of the six modern office concepts we have presented:
1) Open space offices Employees are one big team and need to work closely together.
2) Team offices There are many individual departments or teams that need to work closely together.
3) Cellular offices Employees work with sensitive data and need a modernly interpreted and quiet workplace.
4) Desk sharing: Many work remotely or from home.
5) Combi offices: Spontaneous meetings and lively collaboration are part of employees’ everyday lives.
6) Reversible offices Teams change often and quickly.
7) Coworking spaces Offering a break from working at home, co-working spaces offer an affordable alternative for those working remotely, without sacrificing focus – alone or in a team.
One final benefit: Companies with modern office concepts are a lot more attractive when it comes to recruiting personnel. Given the current shortage of skilled workers in many areas, efficient and successful recruiting is a decisive factor in standing out from the competition.