Hybrid and versatile: an identikit of the post-pandemic office
It could be said that it does not leave but doubles. Or, at least, it grows. We are talking about the post-pandemic office, which is expanding its spaces. Fewer desks, more space available: out of necessity and out of will. On the one hand, in fact, the greater recourse of workers to smart working will bring fewer people into the office every day. On the other hand, on the other hand, the need to have more space for sharing ideas and knowledge emerges in an ever stronger way. In summary: fewer people, more collaboration. It seems an oxymoron: it is, in reality, the near future. Indeed, the present. Because the office takes advantage of the crisis due to the health emergency to reconsider. And move from a mere place of production to a place of interaction, evolving to maximize employee engagement and productivity.
The office becomes a meeting place
This is confirmed by a recent investigation by InvestiRe sgr and the Politecnico di Milano. The study, conducted on a sample of medium and large companies, reveals an interesting fact. Over half of the companies surveyed are rethinking their office spaces to welcome employees again after Covid. In short, not only smart and home working, even if the work will be increasingly agile. Summarizing, we could say that the office becomes a meeting place, while the place where you work is a choice. Therefore, we will go to the office as needed. An oasis to work in a team, to discuss, but also to welcome customers and recruit. Combining safety and well-being, flexibility and productivity. A turning point that also passes through a reinterpretation and a different design of the physical layout and furnishings.
In pod we trust
How does all this translate in concrete terms? Can a closed space be in an open office environment and even enhance it? These are some of the questions Collaborative Room wants to answer. The range of modular acoustic boxes combines all the macro aspects of the Covid post office:
- Versatility of use: from a technical room to a meeting room, from a telephone booth to an ideal space for coffee breaks or waiting rooms;
- Modularity: walkable area from 1 to 15 square meters and various possibilities for interior furnishing;
Design that fosters a positive and productive working climate;
- Safety: safety and Design for All certifications, controlled mechanical ventilation for indoor air quality, with a new sanitation module (Covid free)
- Privacy and acoustic comfort with noise absorption up to 35 dB.
Fewer individual offices, more common areas
That the post Covid office will be different is confirmed by the companies themselves. Those, at least, interviewed by the investment & asset management company Coima in the recent survey The future of offices.
For 68%, the optimal office layout consists of a mix of open spaces, individual offices and collaboration rooms;
74% expect an increase in spaces dedicated to common areas;
on the other hand, almost all of the realities interviewed (97%) do not foresee an increase in the space dedicated to individual workstations.
Furthermore, none of the companies interviewed believes that a reduction in the use of shared environments in the post Covid is likely. Without prejudice, of course, to all safety measures, which also include a remodeling of spaces and furnishings.
The challenge is, therefore, to design the hybrid office, in which opposites attract. An office poised between openness and privacy, between seats where you can chat and high tables for a quick brainstorming, perhaps over a coffee. With an eye to ergonomics: an important element because protecting well-being means improving (also) efficiency.
Italy is at the forefront. Our idea of Italian Smart Office is precisely this. That is to create a workspace with a flexible layout, where those who work are free to move with ease in “traditional” operating spaces, areas dedicated to silence and concentration, areas dedicated to interaction or relaxation. A challenge, as mentioned, which also and above all involves design and products. For an accessible, comfortable and pleasant multi-space to use.