Navigating the Future of Workspaces with NORNORM's 2023 Trends and 2024 Predictions

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In a world where change is the only constant, NORNORM has led the revolution in creating adaptable workspaces through continuous optimisation of office furniture layouts. 2023 has been another pivotal year in which we’ve seen demands for adapting workspaces skyrocket, with our expert Customer Success team at the forefront of this transformation.

With more than 400 office furniture changes successfully completed this year, Philip van Engeldorp Gastelaars and Nikolas Hartlieb share the invaluable insights from our Customer Success team in understanding and shaping the trends in workspace design and utilisation. These changes have not only enhanced workspace functionality but also significantly improved employee productivity and satisfaction.

2023 Trends in the World of Work

As we reflect on the year, let's delve into the significant trends observed by Philip, whose experiences provide a unique window into how workspaces have adapted to meet the continuously changing needs and emerging challenges of companies across Europe.

Diverse Reasons for Changes

- NORNORM's adaptable model has catered to a plethora of reasons for changing office furniture this year, enabling customers to continually update workspaces to suit their ever-changing needs.
- Adaptability is key to workspace success, fitting diverse requirements ranging from company expansions to office function refreshes.

Fluctuating Demand for Privacy and Room Separation

- Rise in popularity of phone pods, divider screens, etc., mirroring the dynamic nature of modern work – sometimes collaborative, other times requiring privacy and focus.
- The actual use of spaces can be very different in practice compared to initial designs. Divider screens have become one of the most requested products during flex changes, particularly requested in departments like development, finance, and HR.
- Significant increase in phone booths in offices, especially in smaller spaces where they are effective in creating privacy when separate meeting rooms aren’t feasible. They are also beneficial for older buildings that cannot undergo structural changes.

Young Workforces and Office Usage

- In major European cities, younger teams have shown a tendency to use office spaces more for focused work too. This trend reflects not just a generational shift but also the realities of urban living and working spaces.
- Younger employees, often living in smaller houses, find the office a more suitable space for work, and come to the office to gain experience.
- This insight has led to a rethinking of office design strategies, focusing on creating multifunctional spaces that cater to diverse needs.

2024 Predictions for Workspace Usage

As we look towards the future, Niko shares his team's predictions on the evolution of workspaces. These insights highlight a shift towards more adaptable, technologically-equipped, and purposefully-designed office spaces, reflecting both ongoing trends and new directions in office utilisation and ways of working.

Adapting to Economic Realities and Cost-Efficiency

- Across industries, there’s an urge to be mindful of costs, leading companies to optimise their office space to reduce risks associated with unused areas.
- Shift towards cost-efficient, sustainable growth driving the focus on flexible, modular office spaces. Companies should adapt and reconfigure their physical environments efficiently, responding swiftly to changing needs and growth dynamics.

Creative, Agile, and Technologically Advanced Workspaces

- While we are seeing workstations remain a constant in the office, there will be a rise in need for environments fostering open collaboration, innovation, and agility.
- Incorporation of advanced technology, such as audio-video equipment in meeting rooms has become essential to facilitate hybrid meetings and will continue to be a requirement for effective global collaboration.

Balanced Office Attendance and Zone Distinction

- Movement towards a balanced 3-day office presence, with spaces designed to maximise the value of in-person interactions.
- Creation of distinct zones for different activities, ensuring effective use of space for both concentrated and collaborative work.
- Phone booths as a necessity for short meetings and private communication in modern, technically advanced work environments.

2023 has been a year of learning, adaptation, and growth in workspace design. As we look towards the future, NORNORM remains committed to staying ahead of these evolving trends, ensuring our workspaces continue to meet the changing needs of our customers and their employees.

Remember, don’t office like it’s 1973. Let NORNORM guide you into the future of workspace design.