2021 office fit out design trends: how to keep your workforce engaged

April 6, 2021
The needs of the modern workspace are evolving and with that, office fit out design trends are changing to meet the demands of a modern workforce. With employees being able to work remotely from the comfort of their own home, they need a good reason to make the commute into the office. Enabling connection and collaboration with a flexible workforce while maintaining morale and attracting top talent is a challenge which will have a big impact on the bottom line this year.

We explore the office fit out trends of 2021 and how they can help you influence employee outcomes for success.

Accommodating ‘the new normal

It’s clear by now that flexible working is here to stay, so we need to ensure the office can provide a seamless technology experience, regardless of where people choose to do their work. 

Incorporating video conferencing capabilities, charging facilities, laptops and universal docking stations into your workspace means your people can pick up where they left off and connect with colleagues and contractors regardless of location. 

WFH, at work

This one featured high on our list of design trends in 2020, and the desire for the creature comforts of home in the office, is here to stay. The incorporation of soft furnishings, floor coverings, decoration and luxe textiles is not just a way to coax your workers back into the office. By investing time and effort into your office fit out to make it comfortable and homely, you’re sending a strong message to your people that you want them to be happy in the workplace; a great boost for morale after what was a difficult 12 months.  And don’t forget the plants; biophilic design is very much still in demand, especially because plants are a well-known mood booster.

We still need contact

Whilst the adoption of remote working was far more seamless than anyone expected, there’s no doubt that organisational culture and morale would take a big hit if we were to do away with the office all together. 

What we will see though, is the rise of the HQ or Flagship style office with a reduced footprint, capable of housing a limited number of people on a given day and equipped with multi-use spaces. 

For smaller organisations looking to downsize or those who can’t predict their future growth and occupancy requirements, but who don’t want a traditional coworking space, new hybrid solutions are popping up, or maybe they are just the reinvention of the old serviced office, without the admin support. We have found niche companies offering smaller, private office spaces, with shared facilities and shorter lease terms. This creates a flexible, hybrid solution bridging the gap between traditional leasing and full coworking. They come with all the benefits and features of a corporate office, including the technology, facilities and networking opportunities, and of course, a monthly fee. 

It’s a beautiful day in the neighbourhood

Forget about the one body equals one desk rule or even the standard hot desking arrangements, the office is moving into neighbourhoods

With the rapid, and in most cases, forced adoption of flexible working during the Covid lockdowns of 2020, most businesses demonstrated that they could accommodate remote working quite comfortably. 

Moving forward, most organisations are incorporating these flexible arrangements into their ways of working, meaning that employees will be using a range of videoconferencing and digital technology as part of their everyday routine.  The concept of ‘neighbourhoods’ means teams are equipped with a space designed for different types of activity based working like video calls, individual work and breakout spaces. This allows them to work in close proximity to each other to maximise collaboration and connection on the days they are in the office, and allows the space to remain agile and flexible, accounting for the needs of different teams on different days.

Flexible furniture

Another one that made it to the list of design trends in 2020, and in a post-Covid workplace, it’s more important than ever to make sure your office space can flex with your changing needs.

Lightweight, multipurpose furniture that can be moved and relocated  to create spaces as needed is a great way to make sure you’re accounting for the shifting needs of teams. 

Go green, gain talent

While this one has been on the radar for quite some time (as it should be), in the last little while, an employer’s commitment to sustainability has become a marker by which talent measures a workplace. 

In a recent survey, nearly half of all participants, and over 75% of millennials (who currently make up over half the workforce) said they would accept a paycut to work for a sustainable company. Considering every workforce wants to attract and retain top talent, it’s time to incorporate sustainability into your design to give yourself the competitive advantage.

Going green can mean anything from choosing sustainable materials when you redesign your workspace, energy efficient lighting and kitchen appliances to separated waste and a recycling program.

Get the best advice

Before you take the plunge, it’s worth engaging professionals, like the Vestra office design and fit out team, to help you understand the best way to move forward with your workspace. We’re a full-service office fit out company with expert planners, designers, project managers and builders with years of expertise designing high-end creative workspaces

We take the time to get to know you and go on walkthroughs of your site and plan the right workspace for your team, which includes:

  • Bespoke joinery options
  • Audio-visual and technology solutions
  • Electrical, data and lighting needs
  • Office furniture selection

We also offer you a smooth process, and a solid portfolio.


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The earlier you chat with us, the better. We can help guide you through the whole process of office design. Get in touch with us today for a friendly, obligation-free chat about what’s possible.

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