January 2022

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Workplace

How to decorate an office reception

When planning an office fit out, a crucial factor to bear in mind is the design of your reception area. It’s all about providing a comfortable yet superbly stylish place for visitors and clients to relax and wait in. This space will essentially be the first impression they get of your business, so if you don’t get the arrangement right, it could end up having an adverse effect (which you definitely don’t want). We’re here to share all the dos when it comes to designing a welcoming office reception, considering everything from bringing in an essence of the outside to setting the right mood, all to help your refurbishment that bit easier. 

Brighten up your space

Making use of natural light is a certified way to brighten up your office reception, whilst carrying several health benefits; this includes combating insomnia, aiding seasonal depression and providing a significant boost in Vitamin D levels. Alongside enhancing the productivity of office staff, an office reception area that’s far from dull is certain to improve the mood of anyone who pays your business a visit, so it’s definitely a must. 

Another way to design a welcoming office reception area to make it appear brighter is through choice of accessories, wall colours and furniture, all of which are completely customisable to suit your business’ aesthetic. Young, energetic start-ups may choose bold colours to fit a playful theme, or sophisticated organisations might favor a minimalistic style. Consider your values before deciding on your reception furniture, so that your space will evoke the desired emotions that you’d like to be associated with your business. We’ll leave that choice up to you. 

Personalising your office reception

Give your visitors a taste of what your business is about by personalising your office reception accordingly. Featuring your company logo or bold words of inspiration are more obvious ways to do this, but you could also create the desired effect using discrete methods. For example, if your company logo is blue, white and red, you could choose office furniture or accessories (think cushions, rugs and throws) that blend in with this theme. This will help your business stay at the forefront of your visitors’ minds, enabling them to make the connection between colour and company. 

Something to look at

Being a productivity enhancer, mood booster and stress decreaser, decorating the walls of your office reception with pieces of artwork is a great way to give your visitor’s a bit of visual stimulation whilst they wait. Not to mention, office artwork encourages thinking outside the box and acts as a brilliant conversation starter, which is particularly useful for those who feel the pressure of meetings and struggle knowing what to say to a new face. Choose your artwork in a way that matches the business vibe you’re going for, to ensure that your pieces effortlessly blend into their surroundings.

Something to do

What other ways could the mind be stimulated whilst waiting? By providing your visitors with something to do, of course! They can only look at pieces of artwork for so long, so make sure there’s plenty of books, magazines, or perhaps a drinks stand and TV to keep them entertained. Just be careful with the latter, as if you’re going for a more calming atmosphere, louder noise levels may not be so appropriate.

Providing a comfortable space

Comfort is key when it comes to office design, so make sure your reception provides visitors with something to sink back into. From feather soft office arm chairs to stylish office sofas, there are plenty of options out there that come in a whole variety of different colours, shapes and sizes. Regardless of your dream aesthetic, there really is something out there for every business. Most people feel comfortable in places they’re familiar with, which is the perfect excuse to bring home comforts into your office reception area. We’re talking about the leafy interior design trend that’s sweeping the nation (aka office biophilia), as well as choosing just the right amount of office lighting to create a warm and comforting glow. You can find further tips on this in one of our past articles; how to use interior design to make your office more homely.  

Creating a calming office atmosphere

Fitting in rather nicely with our previous point, creating a calming atmosphere in your office reception is another way to put visitors at ease. Work environments can often be associated with hustle and bustle, so provide the chance for people to tune out from the outside world and reconnect with themselves. This could be trickling water features, living walls and relaxing music set at just the right volume to bring back a sense of much needed peace. Remember to keep back the clutter, creating a clean, tidy and organised appearance; because an organised space contributes to an orderly mind. 

If you’ve been inspired by these ideas on how to decorate a welcoming office reception, or perhaps you need a hand with giving your other working areas a new lease of life, our team of fit out experts are on hand to help. Get in touch with us today to bring your dream office environment to life. 

Space Planning, Workplace

Flexible workspace: What is it and why do you need it?

What is a flexible workspace?

The modern working world is changing. What was once regarded as being a “typical” office environment is now considered restrictive and counter-productive. Gone are the days of set desk positions, cubicles and the strict ‘nine to five’, replaced with open-plan seating that caters to employees’ ever-changing working needs. 

Within a flexible workspace, there need to be different “zones” that staff have a choice to work from, giving them the freedom to choose where suits their current task at hand. This mentality has become the norm, with recent research conducted by the EY in their 2021 Work Reimagined Employee Survey revealing that four out of five workers desired a flexible workspace. Not only this, a whopping 47% stated that they would consider moving jobs if flexible working wasn’t available to them. If there’s ever a time to hop on the bandwagon, it’s now! 

Why do you need a flexible workspace?

So, what are the benefits of flexible working? To answer, there’s plenty. Embarking on an office redesign could provide the boost your employees need, as proven by a Dr. van der Voordt’s study that aimed to shine a light on productivity and employee satisfaction in flexible workspaces. This research revealed that, when a company decided to change its office layout, an increase in productivity was felt by 51%, as opposed to a low 14% before the redesign. 

When staff have control over how and where they work, it’s evident that they’re much happier being in an environment that caters to their ever-changing needs. And with the smiles comes a heightened desire to stay within the business, alongside attracting new talent. 

How to set up a flexible workspace

Of course, the process of setting up a flexible workspace is made much easier when you have a bunch of office fit out professionals to help you out. By collaborating with an office furniture company, they’ll be able to turn your design dreams into reality, being able to understand your requirements and business needs, as well as offering you items that would best fit the desired office aesthetic. From minimalistic styles to cosy and kitsch, there’s something out there for every business. 

Collaborative areas

The flexible workspace features various office breakout spaces, which are set zones designed to enhance staff communication and collaboration. They allow groups to participate in a brainstorming session, or provide a space for partners to work on a project together. Without these spaces, it’s likely that employees will end up tightly huddled around a desk, causing a distraction to the rest of the office if noise levels begin to creep higher. When staff are given their own breakout space to chat in, which are often complete with shielding acoustic panels for noise protection, the whole office will be productive. 

Quiet zones

Any working environment experiences moments in the day that are particularly high-energy, and sometimes employees may need to take a quiet minute to recharge away from the commotion. Incorporating an office relaxation room into your flexible workspace creates the opportunity for staff to get some “me time”, surrounded by calming plants, ambient music and of course, plenty of comfortable furniture. Our office armchairs and sofas strive for optimum comfort, allowing your employees to sink back into complete luxury. And…breathe.

Open plan office design

The open plan office design concept is a massive contributor to increased flexibility in the workspace. This allows staff to move freely through the various working “zones”, as described previously, creating a more sociable environment where it’s perfectly normal to bump into a few colleagues along the way. The open plan office design is all about using your working space wisely, contrasting against more traditional set-ups that confined staff to cramped, sectioned desks. 

Hot desks

Another feature of the flexible workspace that goes against traditional office design is hot desking, where desks are not assigned to any particular person. With no strict seating plan in place, staff can pick and choose where they complete their work, and this also opens up the opportunity for visitors or temps to take a seat.

If you want to enhance flexibility in your workspace, our team of office fit out experts are here to help. Have a chat with us to discuss your business goals, so that we can match you up with the right furniture to suit your dream aesthetic.