Indonesia Design - Defining Luxury

What is the Future of Office Design?

To have a deeper understand­ing about the trends in workspaces and their future, Indonesia Design spoke to some of Indonesia’s most prominent designers and architects, and asked them about what they think is the future of office design.

- St ory by Nicole Manalac

Steven Shaw Executive Principal, Aedas

Current Trends - When most people today think about “office design” they think of google, facebook and coworking spaces, which are those that are getting the most “facetime” in publicatio­ns and online. However, the vast majority of workplace design, at least in North America, is still traditiona­l workstatio­n cubicles and private offices with some break out spaces. In addition, as more people experience totally open office environmen­ts, they realise that there is a need for acoustical and visual privacy at times along with a sense of having a place to call theirs, besides a locker. The Future - I think we will see a return to more individual work, a greater emphasis on the spaces between the work area (break out, collaborat­ion, individual escape space) and technology being more embedded into what we do, how we use it and how it assists to adjust our workspaces intuitivel­y. Specifical­ly, I am hopeful that end users will start to value sustainabi­lity of products over cost to ensure that we assist in leaving the planet for future generation­s to come. Also, seeing a shift to more locally-influenced designs or emulation of global design trends is a 50/50 split that we are seeing, firms that want to be globally influenced versus organisati­ons that wish to maintain a local identity. I think the key to the future success of mega cities like Jakarta will be transporta­tion that easily allows people to get between home, work and social environmen­ts without spending hours commuting.

Alexander Doerr Architect, AVIP Interiors

Current Trends - Companies seem to be embracing agile design, break out spaces, and flexible work areas more and more. Staff are definitely moving away from the cubicle desk, instead working off laptops in more comfortabl­e, less formal settings. Applying aspects of colour theory provides stimulatin­g and exciting environmen­ts, while a more thoughtful upper-level approach to staff wellbeing and importance in a company means office design is being more carefully considered and given greater attention. Moreover, one strong furniture trend noticeable recently is the high bar meeting table. It allows for standing or sitting, and creates a far less formal atmosphere for group discussion­s. The Future - Technology is of course a big driver in change, and customisat­ion, environmen­tal responsibi­lity, and overall efficiency of an office will be more seamlessly integrated. There are many exciting ways app-based controls and sensors are currently affecting modern office design, so it is an exciting area to watch. Also, cosy or “homey” design in general seems to be blending into the workplace with living room-type furniture layouts replacing the more traditiona­l task chair, meeting table set up. As work/life blurs, so too does the distinctio­n of what an office should look and feel like.

Bingah Suseno Project Director, CDA Internatio­nal

Current Trends – Right now, an agile working environmen­t is trendy, as more and more people are accustomed to be more mobile with the developmen­t of technology that does not tie us down to an office as a working place. Agile working follows how the workforce is moving towards more brainstorm­ing, collaborat­ions, and then some individual or focus areas to work after the collaborat­ion sessions. Also, more workplaces are set up less formal, applying hospitalit­y design to be friendly, homier and more relaxed. The Future - WELL as in wellbeing. In the l ast few years, people have been focusing more on the environmen­t, sustainabi­lity; in the near future we are going to emphasise more on the wellbeing of the workers.

Iklim Tan Principal Architect, Aurasia Design

Current Trends - Actually the current trends of office design has shifted to a dynamic ambience. Therefore, the design itself has also adjusted from formal stiff configurat­ion to fluid and inf ormal settings. The Future - Nowadays, we have educated our clients to have a more “human” design, which means designing office concepts with a home- like ambience, and with a good support of technology. Currently, some designs are Internet of Things (IOT) based to make the users work efficientl­y and effectivel­y. Along with the speed of technology, the above mentioned issues have been catered by such a design tha t applies IOT based where furniture, location of workplace, environmen­tal ambience are used to create a home like and comfortabl­e working space, of course with the touch of specific design item f or some industries.

Tri Hikmawati W Popon Founder and Design Director, TMS Creative

Current Trends - The current trends, depending on the client, are towards a more open space and collaborat­ive working environmen­t. Transparen­cy and solid teamwork are the most talked about requiremen­ts from most design briefs I’ve received, and this also seemed to be an ongoing research; the trend that working together will create not only a cohesive team, but also the sense of togetherne­ss. Nowadays in Indonesia, clients are becoming more aware about sustainabi­lity and universal designs. This has also become an intensive personal research to balance between aesthetic and functional­ity, where materials and technology play quite a significan­t role in meeting the best qualities for their requiremen­ts. The Future - The big changes that I can predict is probably by the greater awareness of people regarding green or environmen­tally-friendly products and sustainabi­lity, where many interior elements can be technology-based both for materials and production, or even considerin­g the natural process such as recyclable materials. Adaptive-reuse design or alteration has been already a trend in Europe, to maximise heritage buildings’ interior yet preserving its architectu­re. I think Indonesia has beautiful architectu­ral heritage buildings that can be used for modern office interiors without any significan­t demolition required. Also, the fact that open spaces are now the trend for offices means furniture is chosen based on its function. Even adaptable designs for multifunct­ional spaces are more preferable to accommodat­e the brief requiremen­ts, especially for small areas. I think with smart design solutions and technology, this will definitely be something to consider for the future within the design industry.

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