8 Top Hybrid Office Design Trends

The global pandemic has charged up a growing need for a workspace that harmoniously allows the opportunity for both remote working and face-to-face collaboration. As a matter of fact, this is rapidly becoming the new normal. It’s officially the era of hybrid working and there’s a massive possibility that it’s here to stay for good.

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The rise of hybrid working has tremendously shaped workspaces to become more synergetic and flexible. This has constructively created fresh office design trends that better suit our needs and our new normal. 

We’ve assembled a collection of eight of the top hybrid office design trends. We'll explore how the role of the office is beginning to change and how the layout, function and design will fuse into this new era. 

1. Biophilic office design

Biophilic design is a rapidly growing trend, particularly now within hybrid office designs. It’s exciting, beneficial and perhaps one of the most valuable trends for hybrid office redesigns. Using elements of nature — whether that’s plants and greenery, natural light or even the presence of water — biophilic design is a fantastic trend to incorporate into a hybrid office space.

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Biophilic design is hugely connected to our greater wellbeing. As a great deal of our working lives is passed by indoors, whether you know it or not, what we’re immediately surrounded by contributes to our health. 

So, this trend of bringing the outdoors in is a great way to really give our psychological wellbeing a boost. It helps us engage in our surroundings to create a flexible space for our day-to-day work life. 

By enhancing the space through biophilic design, using elements of nature and essentially re-creating the sensory feelings invoked by nature, it allows us to consider the office as a community allowing for more suitable interaction. 

But as well as being a fantastic trend for hybrid office designs, biophilia improves air quality, increases productivity, boosts our mood and creativity and reduces stress. Let’s be honest; we could use a sense of stress relief in the office, right?

Think living walls, planters, water features and natural light. Biophilic design continues to grow into an important trend for hybrid office designs and strengthens our feelings of connectedness. 

3. Advanced meeting rooms

When looking into the shift of physical spaces within the office, a top trend for hybrid working is a design and layout accommodating meetings and video conferences.

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With travel restrictions and increased virtual Zoom meetings, hybrid office designs include WiFi-enabled areas for connecting, wireless presentation systems, large screens and acoustic solutions for smooth-running meeting experiences. 

It’s a fantastic trend that can truly eliminate the limitations when working from home. A flexible space, technology and user experience are crucial for an office where meetings and conferencing occur.

The hybrid office simultaneously balances a traditional office with the latest technology and flexibility, such as occupancy sensors, to create a solution for efficiently used space. 

3. Pod areas

A key element of hybrid working is more privacy and separation. From solo focus to group collaborations, comfortable pod areas are another growing hybrid office designs trend.

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Besides being a great way to create zones within the office for flexible working, pod areas are perfect for being used as a place for you to refresh and recharge away from the day-to-day hustle and bustle of the office. 

Pods can be adaptable to different uses like a private office area, quick telephone calls, moved around for informal meetings or even as a breakaway from your regular workstation to enhance productivity.

Pod areas are great for reimagining the workstation for a hybrid office. It’s much more agile than a traditional office design and so definitely one of the top trends for hybrid office designs.

4. Office social club

A space between the home and the office is a social, multi-purpose ‘breakout’ area. Instead of desk-based solo work, employees can collaborate and socialize in a ‘fun’ space while working at the office.

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Social spaces are incredibly flexible and multi-purpose. This quality makes for a good hybrid office design because it goes beyond the physical and social barriers of traditional office layouts, falling hand in hand with hot-desking. 

A social space designed specifically for employees to collaborate and share ideas allows for the best ideas to be shared and exchanged without reluctance and foregoing the limitations of shared desks.

Incorporating this trend into a hybrid office design doesn't mean that space will be minimized. Alternatively, it creates a more dynamic workplace and maximizes the efficiency of the overall space. This is a crucial element for a functional hybrid office design. 

5. Home comforts

After much of our time spent working from home during the pandemic, we’ve slowly begun to appreciate the comfort of our couches, beds and whatever else we were throwing together for a makeshift workspace.

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A workplace more adaptable to change is a key trend for an efficient hybrid office design, as we’ve seen through the huge shift in needs and design over the past couple of years. A great solution to bringing back a sense of the same comfort achieved at home is through configurable furniture. 

Whether it’s a comfortable couch, design-driven sofa or chaise lounge, armchair or a non-typical upholstered bench/stool/chair, comfort is key for the new normal hybrid office. And it doesn’t just include furniture. Home comfort can also come from outdoor spaces, large kitchens or quiet zones.

Believe it or not, even the choice of furniture is a considerable decision for a well-functioning hybrid office design, as it can contribute to the productivity, creativity and wellbeing of employees. It can enhance the office's aesthetic, act as space divisions, provide zonal flexibility for hot-desking and make for a pleasant and enjoyable workspace. 

So even those of you who run for the chance to work from home, you'll find that this top trend of home comforts can physically make you want to turn up to the office and enjoy the ease of home settings right here at the office.

On the flip side some people are setting up co-working spaces at home. If that's you,
check out these design tips.

6. A pop of color

A good hybrid office design will always focus on wellness and health — physical and mental. And it’s essential to know that color plays a huge part in wellbeing, so a widely popular trend is a pop of color in the office.

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We’re inspired by color. Bursts of bright hues around the office, besides company colors, is a trend to embrace for the new normal hybrid office designs. Different colors can stimulate, motivate, inspire, and encourage us in many different ways when getting on with work in our offices. 

This is ideal when balancing wellbeing with a reimagined workstation for a thriving working environment. 

The hybrid office is reconfigured to be a place for collaboration and motivation. The perfect way to reflect this is through color to help generate ideas, boost mood and encourage activity. A pop of color is a brilliant trend to revamp and re-energize a hybrid office space, simultaneously working as a calming and balanced solution to reduce employee post-pandemic anxiety.

7. Movable walls, screens and panels

Flexibility in design and function is what hybrid working is all about and this trend exemplifies the purpose of the redesign of office spaces.

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Post-pandemic, many of us struggle to switch from only getting used to working from home to now coming back into the office. So, this trend effortlessly encourages employees to simply get moving. 

From pushing walls away for larger gathered meetings to sliding screens and panels for solo or private work, this top trend offers employees working within a hybrid office the opportunity to feel secure and in control, which was difficult to grasp during the working from home stage. 

This readjustment to office design allows for well-balanced working, collaboration and dynamic among employees. The design features of screens, walls and panels become integrated and adaptable to fit employee needs.

8. Natural lighting

A key trend for hybrid office designs is embracing more natural lighting in the workplace. And after being stuck indoors for much of our time, it’s essential to maintain a sense of freedom and freshness through our surroundings in the office.

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Exposure to natural light is already known to enhance productivity. Still, it also allows employees to feel more calm, healthy and happy. 

A healthy and dynamic workspace allows employees to return to the office. Natural lighting is crucial because it creates a well-functioning and efficient space. Once a reimagined office incorporates a sense of natural light, it allows the employees to feel less trapped indoors, which triggers post-pandemic anxiety.

So, oversized windows, diffused lights and landscaping are perfect for creating a mood-boosting environment with reduced stress and with a focus on mental health and wellbeing. 

A good hybrid office design begins with a balance of these top trends. And as our new hybrid offices are starting to become more adaptable to change by focusing on health, wellbeing, flexibility, and better interaction, it’s time to be inspired by what the future for office design, function and layout holds. 

Hybrid working also means employees can choose when to come and go from the office. It also means they're likely to share desks, as the time has passed of each employee having a designated area with remote work now in play.

To help you manage desks, allow employees to book desks and keep track of who's in the office, another hybrid trend to adopt is investing in desk management and desk booking software, like Deskfound. Find out more today.