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Workspaces Impact Employees’ Physical, Mental, Emotional Health

Hersh Pitroda (hershpitroda@gmail.com), the founder of Mumbai-based modern furniture making company Burosys, is convinced that better ergonomics in the office helps in achieving better productivity. In an exclusive interaction with Sourcing Hardware, Pitroda shares his thoughts on trends in furniture and workspace design.

By Gyanendra Kumar Kashyap

How has the concept of workspaces changed over the last few years; what are the trends in workspace design for 2019?

Workspaces in India are evolving rapidly as new influences from other countries integrate with the essence of Indian society, to deliver unique working experience and office culture. Office furniture is a reflection of the workplace as the interior design directly impacts how office staff interacts with each other. Traditionally, furniture-making in India was a product of hard manual labour, painstakingly crafted from wood and iron, long-lasting and made to be efficient. As the industrial revolution changed this equation, traditional manufacturing methods gave way to contemporary processes and tools. Machinery took over the grunt work, leaving furniture makers to come up with more intelligent and modern designs for the 21st-century individual.

The trends in workspace design for 2019 are:

Shared office space: Open, shared workspaces are gaining favour among small businesses, freelancers, remote employees and in some cases, even big brands. This model allows for a convenient, low-cost option to invest in a workspace.

Open-plan desking: Along the same lines, a new trend is emerging wherein the traditional cabin walls between the work-force are breaking down. This transition from segmented individual work stations to a more open-plan office is expected to foster an increased sense of community, boost collaboration and reinforce social relationships.

Adding green to work: It has been proven that being in nature is beneficial at many levels for the office staff to feel calm, creative, happier, and healthier. Now, companies are going to dive deeper, beyond the vertical garden or chic grass sidewalk, to apply the idea of green to all of their processes. Offices, hotels, malls, etc., have started adding living green walls, air-purifying plants, colourful flowers and bonsai trees to their interior and exterior landscapes.

How has furniture design kept pace with workspace design? How does your design reflect the emerging trends in workspace design?

Modern furniture making is a boon for commercial spaces. Similar products in large quantities can be produced on demand and shipped within a fraction of the time it will take to produce them manually. At the same time, these furniture products can be designed per a company’s brand image. Advanced technical features can also be easily included while creating the product.

Our systems are designed ground-up, hence everything about the system is designed keeping the end-user in mind. It’s crafted especially for growing organisations where features can have a huge time-saving impact in working functional offices.

Workspaces directly impact the employees’ physical, mental and emotional health. When designing the layout of an office and subsequently decorating the interiors with essential furniture, it is critical that employers keep the well-being of their employees as the highest priority. The way employees feel about their workspace will influence their overall productivity. Better ergonomics in the office makes the work-life better for employees; hence, it helps in better productivity.

At Burosys, how are you integrating the concepts of connected spaces, occupancy sensors, IoT, etc. into your designs?

As offices turn into corporate parks and as parks turn into smart cities, the need to track population density and area usage is becoming increasingly important. As a small but powerful step in that direction, we now provide desks integrated with occupancy sensors and a lot of IoT devices integrated within the furniture.

Occupancy sensors inform what the occupancy percentage per floor or in a conference room is. This allows the COO to make energy-saving decisions such as clubbing two floors together or converting a conference room into smaller meeting rooms based on usage statistics. These have other implications such as the impact on productivity, better collaboration and such others.

Burosys, being a leading manufacturer and curator of office furniture, has launched the hit crowdfunded product from Indiegogo – SOBRO’s Smart Coffee Table. Smart Coffee Table is a centre for connection and comfort. A built-in refrigerator drawer keeps up to 32 drinks cold for a refreshing boost at any time. Bluetooth-enabled speakers deliver an enhanced sound experience, while two USB charging ports and four power outlets allow keeping devices nearby and fully powered. A touch control panel is built seamlessly into the tempered glass top, allowing you to control sound levels, playback, and lighting with the touch of a finger. LED lights on the underside of the Sobro Smart Coffee Table transform the space and make for an amazing ambience, whether you’re watching Netflix or having your next big bash. The two storage drawers keep your possessions at hand whenever you need a plug, bottle opener, or pen.


Also read: How the Rise of Co-working Space is Influencing Workplace Designs

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