The rise of white office furniture

The rise of white office furniture

Back in the 80’s and 90’s most offices looked pretty similar. You’d probably see neat rows of faux wood desks, paired with black or grey swivel office chairs. If you worked for a company who were really pushing the boundaries, you might even have had a modular workstation. This would have been complete with dividing walls so you couldn’t see your colleagues – and to soften the look, a lovely textured fabric covering came as standard.

Not much changed for a while. Then all of a sudden, we saw a new style of furniture dashing into offices around the country. And this time it was WHITE. This new phenomenon took the office world by storm - and the trend seems to be continuing. In fact, did you know that nearly four times as many people are looking for white office furniture opposed to black?

 

White office furniture prevails over traditional black Exploring the white trend

So what has led to this shift from wood to white? Is it the influence of the laid-back, Swedish style of IKEA? Or perhaps it’s been driven by the Apple Corporation? The technology giant has certainly led the way for white gadgets and headphones - just when we’d all got used to the fact that laptops, phones and music players came in any colour as long as it was black. No doubt these have been contributing factors for the white office furniture trend, but they’re not the only reason for this trend.

The changing office environment

It’s now widely recognised that the working environment has a huge effect on morale and productivity. It seems that employers are now catching onto the fact that a well-designed office space can also increase creativity, staff loyalty and even help to create a better reputation for the company.

That’s why we’re seeing the shift from formal, restrictive office spaces full of heavy, dark furniture and little character, to open plan workspaces, break out areas and even stand up desks. Recent research in Scandinavia even linked the benefit of a pleasant office environment to the number of sick days taken. When you take all of this into account, it’s no wonder that companies are starting to take their surroundings a little bit more seriously.

What’s right about white?

London based office interior designers K2, say that the focus on white and pale furniture was very evident at the recent Orgatec furniture exhibition which attracts over 50,000 visitors from more than 120 countries.

White is such a good choice in any space as it reflects light – one of the reasons why white cars sell well in countries with hotter climates. It can transform a drab, uninspiring space into a modern, vibrant and light-filled environment with an atmosphere of creativity and positivity. It’s also such a flexible option as it can be used to create a contemporary and minimal look or paired with your company’s corporate colours to create something really bold and striking.

The offices we all want to work in

Some of the really ‘out there’ modern offices are more like theme parks with swish restaurants and cafes, slides and even tree houses! Take Google for example. They know that to attract the smart, creative and ground breaking individuals they need for their business, having a stunning working environment gives them a competitive edge.

Leading interior design and architecture studios, Penson, have created Google’s new London HQ. Situated in the bustling heart of Covent Garden, it’s a crazy mix of British style, townhouse cosiness and fun factory.

Lifestyle website Stylist, got a sneak preview and were very impressed and even a little jealous. In their article ‘we wish we worked here’ they commented: ‘with a focus on comfort, relaxation and efficiency, the Google London HQ gives a huge nod to all things typically British – from the Union Jack covered walls in reception and ‘Secret Garden’ areas up on the roof, to a 200-seater ‘Town Hall’ meeting room, 'Granny Flat' area complete with rocking chairs and cosy vintage furnishings, and even an allotment space where Googlers can plant herbs and vegetables. Ping pong tables, it seems, are SO last year.’

Around the world

There are some incredible examples of great office design here and around the globe. Many companies are increasingly looking to cater to the needs of their employees, bringing a fun element to the workplace and encouraging play as a route to creativity. Others attempt to get the blood flowing to the brain by providing athletic equipment and gyms.

Business site Inc. has put together their list of some of the most beautiful, innovative and amazing company headquarters and start-up offices in the world. Take a look and be inspired by the worlds coolest offices.

We’ve got white covered

We’ve known for a while how white office furniture can help to transform a space. If you’re ready to create a modern, functional environment that your employees will thrive in, take a look at our wide range of white desks, chairs and storage units or call us on 0800 092 1985 and one of our team will be happy to help you.         

Posted by Paul Randall
23rd November 2015