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Recap: Smart Workspace Design Summit 2018

October 12, 2018 4:38 pm | Door Ahrend

The future is now, also in your work environment! That’s why experts in the area of (smart) offices gathered at the Smart Workspace Design Summit in Amsterdam to share and gain knowledge. The most important trend we spotted? The focus on the both fysical and mental well-being of employees.

We can’t deny the influence of technological innovations. However, also this edition of SWDS the well-being of employees was a big focus point, just like at the previous edition. Well-being is hot, as is proven by the many (abstract) theories that can be found. But translating the concept to a specific interior or product? That is still challenging for a lot interior architects and designers.

Stimulate well-being

Architect and researcher Christine Kohlert (RBSGROUP) shared her inspiring vision on well-being based on six dimensions that each have their own tangible design principles: optimism, mindfulness, authenticity, involvement, meaningfulness and vitality. Of course each situation is different and nothing is guaranteed, but still Christine discovered a couple of factors that are key to an environment that stimulates well-being. Comfort is one of the most important aspect, next to a good connection to nature. A space also has to be flexible and variable and stimulate good behavior. To achieve this kind of behavior, it is important that certain decisions are substantiated; by giving employees insight into the ‘why’ of changes, changing behavior will become a lot easier.

Human sustainability

The focus on mental health is much newer. The stigma around this kind of topics influences the well-being of people with mental problems negatively. Moreover, it reduces the work opportunities, causing them to rather lie about the reason of their absence than be honest about – for example – a depression. This also emphasizes the importance of diversity at the workplace; people with autism have very different demands, like more structure and spaces without any distracting stimulants. The message: treat people sustainably. Promote well-being, but keep their personal demands in mind.

The Future is Now

Ahrend shared a stand with Mapiq where we focused on well-being. Where Mapiq explained the WELL Standard and the added value of individual control, accessibiilty to data and flexibility of an environment, Ahrend translated the information to specific products and services, as a Smart Office,the Furniture As A Service concept, the Comfort Workstation and the Ahrend Loungescape Powernap.

Do you want to know more about interior concepts based on well-being and the WELL Standard? Contat one of our interior designers!

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