The Australian workplace is changing, from its architecture to its interior design to the employees themselves.
The modern workplace in general is transitioning into a space that could really be labeled as nothing short of ‘trendy’.
The looming question is why business professionals often sit in warehouse offices, sharing coffees over one of the many potted plants and working transitional hours, often from home, from flexible office locations or from third party office spaces, like the Hub Melbourne.
While there are a number of catalysts for these changes, one of the key reasons is the demand for job satisfaction and enjoyment that reared its head in the modern workplace.
In Australia especially, with a strong economy and a majority of highly-educated workers, employees more often than not have the luxury of choosing employment that is enjoyable and has strong working standards.
This works for employers as well, as it has been proven that providing enjoyable and high quality working conditions, including working environments, employee productivity is dramatically increased.
“We set out to design somewhere that people would enjoy working in,” says Caroline Diesner, HASSELL workplace design team leader in regards to their BHP Billiton Tower in Perth’s CBD.
This joint venture project with Fitzpatrick + Partners focuses on both reinvigorating the Perth CBD and the BHP workforce, with design features such as floor to ceiling window – filling the spaces with warm and natural light – and attractive and highly functional floor-to-floor staircases, which have proven to be an important design tool in cultivating low-pressure communication and collaboration spaces.
This idea of ‘creating a workplace that employees will want to work in’ – a common goal for both HASSELL and a growing number of major architectural firms – means that in terms of design, creature comforts and features that are more commonplace in residential design are creeping into our workplaces.
In Google’s Googleplex headquarters, designers have created what is in essence a home away from home, fitting the space out with stylish kitchens, napping pods, and recreation areas that include amenities ranging from gaming rooms to swimming pools.
This kind of workplace offers strong incentive for workers to spend more time in the workplace and allows them to actually enjoy their daily tasks.
As many people spend more time in the office than anywhere else, it makes sense that these spaces should be enjoyable. By maximising productivity, and perhaps now simply keeping up with employee expectations, the mundane, institutional workplace may soon become a thing of the past.