Guide: How to Create the Ideal Work Environment

The ideal work environment varies from office to office. For some companies, bean bag chairs and plenty of snacks work to enhance the 9-5 experience.

Others may prefer a more structured arrangement–complete with defined seating arrangements and built-in privacy.

From arranging special furniture to selecting the perfect paint colors, here are a few tips to help you nail the ideal work environment for your business.

Collaboration

Does your current office design promote collaboration or is it hard to get people away from their desks and talking to one another?

These days, modern offices are increasingly moving toward an open plan.

The idea is, you’ll break down cubicle walls in favor of more flexible seating that encourages people to engage with one another, rather than being siloed off in their little area.

So how do you create this ideal work environment within your office? Well, the secret lies in the furniture. Consider setting up bench-like work areas or skipping assigned seating for a work space that feels more like your favorite library or cafe.

The flip side of the collaboration trend is, sometimes you do need some cordoned off space to meet and discuss more private matters.

Should you opt for an open plan, consider setting up other offices where people can hold meetings or have a moment of quiet reflection.

Choose the Right Colors

The ideal work environment should inspire creativity, not block great ideas from making their way down the pipeline.

We’ve all been in drab offices that do little more than slow down the passage of time, yet, over-the-top clutter and crazy colors can be jarring or distracting when you’re trying to think.

Color can make you happy or more depressed, motivated or lazy.

You don’t want to stress out your staff. Seek out calming colors like green and blue for best results. Green promotes harmony and creativity, while blue offers trust, along with a soothing clarity.

But, if this all sounds a bit boring–consider adding pops of color here and there. Say, a yellow wall to increase the flow of ideas or red accents to inspire passion and excitement.

Even different rooms can have different colors according to their intended use.

Flexibility

Flexibility is huge in today’s workplace. Modular units, adjustable standing desks, and wheels, wheels, wheels—all are essential in working together to create a space that works how you need it to.

If your office demands a certain level of flexibility, you may want to consider making the move toward minimalism. Think–laptops employees can easily move around and work spaces kept clean and clear.

If it’s a lot of work to move furniture around, you won’t actually do it, after all.

Learn More About Creating the Ideal Work Environment

Got a vision in mind? At Work Space Solutions, we’re all about helping you create a climate where you and your employees can thrive.

Contact us today, and we’ll help you find the right furniture–whether that’s bouncy balls or benches–to enable success.

Alloy Benching – Desks & Workstations

Define Personal Space, Encourage Interaction

Alloy Benching by National Office Furniture bridges the gap between personal offices and open plan spaces. Alloy Benching offers standard, standing-height, or adjustable-height desk options, multiple-configurations possibilities, base color choices, and various electrical solutions allowing you to easily tailor it to fit your needs.

Fixed height powered units feature an integrated trough for easy plug and play capabilities and cord management. Add desktop grommets to further expand power, data, and technology management options. With power and data options within arm’s reach, Alloy facilitates a hub of activity within individual work zones.

 

 

5 Ideas For Quirky and Comfortable Office Chairs

office chairs
Fans of the TV show “The Office” may remember the episode in which Jim bursts Dwight’s bubble — literally — by taking a scissor to the stability ball office chair he’s sitting on. These oversized exercise balls were once all the rage in trendy, fitness-forward workplaces, and chances are there’s still one floating around your office somewhere.

Today, there are many more options for stylish, fun, and super comfortable office chairs. Here are a few of our top picks!

Five of the Best Quirky, Comfy Office Chairs

Upright Chair

locus seat focal upright chair

You’ve probably heard that “sitting is the new smoking” in terms of being detrimental to your health. Standing desks are hugely popular, but standing while working on a computer or at a drafting table isn’t for everyone.

Find a perfect compromise between the benefits of a standing desk and the ease of a chair with an upright chair. You don’t sit on it, but it does provide support by giving you a place to park your bottom. An additional foot board or foot rest takes pressure off those tired dogs, while the angle of the upright chair helps keep your body in an optimal 135-degree open-hip posture.

Pivot Seat

pivot seat focal upright

Are you the type of person who just can’t sit still? Always jiggling a knee (possibly to your coworkers’ chagrin)? Have you commandeered your child’s fidget spinner so you can use it during meetings? If so, Pivot Seat by Focal Upright may be a perfect choice.

A slightly curved base on these molded, lightweight chairs gives you the option to twist, turn, and otherwise fidget as you sit. It gives you the same core-balancing benefits as a stability ball, but without the fear that you’ll roll right off.

Scooch Chair

scooch chair

Modern and minimalist, the Scooch Chair offers several ways to sit. Its handles, light weight, and small-but-mighty profile make it easy to move. Pull it out whenever or wherever an extra seat is needed. Or tuck it under your workstation when it’s not in use.

The Scooch comes in bold, bright jewel tones for a funky office, as well as in more muted earth tones if the rest of your office chairs and other furniture are more conservative.

Stability Ball Chair

If you love your stability ball — coworkers with sharp implements be damned — but want an upgrade, consider a ball chair. Essentially a frame that holds the ball in place, this chair also boasts a back, armrests, and casters just like traditional office chairs.

Fitness buffs enjoy the way a stability ball chair provides the best of both worlds. Pop the ball out for an impromptu workout or a nice relaxing stretch!

A Stylish Swivel Chair

bank of england chair

Maybe you’re old-fashioned. You love the clean, classic look of a slat-backed wooden chair, the kind once found in libraries and courtrooms everywhere. But such vintage seats aren’t particularly comfortable, and they’re darn near impossible to move with ease.

Guess what? You can have your old-school charm and the comfort of a regular swivel chair. Gunlocke’s Bank of England office chairs combines sophistication with adjustability for the ultimate in executive style.

Office Chairs in Fort Wayne

With today’s wide range of office chairs, you can swivel, scoot, balance, bobble, and wobble all while you get your work done. And the best part? We can deliver these chairs to your office! Get in touch and let’s help you add some comfort to your office.

Office Design Concepts For the Modern Workplace

office design concepts

Millenials are changing and shaping the modern workplace as everyone seems to be making their office cool to attract them. It’s estimated that they will outnumber baby boomers in workplaces by the year 2020.

Tech firms are leading the pack in developing new office design concepts that are more appealing to millennials. More companies are using these concepts to help boost productivity and improve employee retention.

But, before you redesign your office to attract the millennial workforce, keep in mind that poor office design costs U.S. businesses about $330 billion each year due to reduced workplace productivity.

So, if you’re planning to revamp your office, here are a few design concepts to consider.

1. Wellness Space

More companies are finding ways to add wellness to work to ensure their employees are active and healthy. One of this ways is through the addition of standing desks to improve the optimum ratio of activity.

Some offices have kitchens that employees can use to cook and enjoy meals together. Yoga and meditation are also becoming the norm in many workplaces with employers offering spaces for these activities.

2. Collaborative Spaces

Traditionally, employees were restricted to one desk or office, and this affected productivity. With the new office design concepts, modern offices combine cubicle banks, private offices, and open floor plans to ensure workers enjoy improve accessibility.

There are communal areas for those who want a place to vent after hours of working and sound-proof rooms for employees that want to focus on solo work. The end result is a modern hybrid office that features different spaces to give employees the autonomy to move around easily.

Offices feature more glass and have places for impromptu and casual meetings to boost engagement and save time.

3. The Fun Factor

Offices are no longer places where you come to file papers, crunch numbers and pound the computer keyboard over and over. Now, employees have their fun areas to unwind and let loose.

Scotiabank in Canada offers a bowling alley for their employees while Burton, a snowboard giant, has a skate park behind their office. Some offices have pool tables, music rooms, karaoke lounges, Lego rooms, and indoor running tracks.

These activities allow workers to break free from the usual grind and re-energize for the day’s work.

4. Deliberate Furniture Designs

Here, tech companies are at it again, and Google is a great example when it comes to quirky and fun office furniture designs. Typically, the essence of these designs is to reduce the number of hours employees spend sitting.

These designs are achieved in varied ways. French designer Benoît Malta’s way is even quirkier. He believes that creating less comfortable chair designs will make people get up more often. If they remain seated, they’re forced to do it actively.

Another deliberate design is whereby furniture comes with a lamp that turns itself on or off depending on the time of the day, so you have to get up and reset it.

Office Design Concepts – The Takeaway

Creating a space that is appealing to employees is an important investment in securing your workforce. Millenials are fueling the push for creative and fun designs in the workplace, phasing out the traditional concepts that don’t boost productivity.

When done right, office design can be a powerful tool for branding and productivity. Employees spend most of their time in the office, so it’s wise to create something that’s functional, accessible, comfortable and inviting.

Do you need help redesigning your workplace? We’re here to help, so feel free to contact us.

7 Cool Computer Desk Ideas for Your Startup

computer desk ideas

Looking for computer desk ideas? You’re in the right place!

There are dozens of potential computer desk ideas, ranging from “extremely zany” to “totally functional and designed to make the user more productive.” Where you fall will depend on your personality, but here are 9 cool computer desk ideas to consider.

1. Go the minimalist route

Minimalist computer desks can be a good play for some work-from-home types because they reduce distractions and provide an overall sense of calm and effective organization. Have you tried AllSteel desks?

2. Use a Portfolio

Computer desks — well, long before computers — used to have a panel that lowered to become the writing surface, often called a portfolio desk. These went out of style because of the inconvenience of moving all your papers to lift the portfolio up again.

But now it might attract some attention from potential clients as “classic,” right?

3. Consider Gunlocke desks

Saranac Collection

The Gunlocke furniture line is comprehensive and includes conference tables, AV cabinets, credenzas, and even tables. But the desks are traditional and elegant. Many of our clients have viewed them as completely tying together their office.

4. Try the Hon Voi series

The Hon brand‘s Voi series combines durable steel with solid and woodgrain laminates to great a desk that’s striking, architectural, and very well built.

5. Forget the Computer Desk Ideas and Go “Matrix” Style

That’s what happened at the NYC-based offices of digital media powerhouse Gawker, who forego some traditional desks and chairs and offered a large roof deck — once called “straight out of the Matrix” — where employees could work. It’s not quite a desk, but lying around wherever works for some, of course.

(We obviously don’t sell this kind of desk as, well, it’s not a desk. But we also like giving people some cool ideas along the way.)

6. Get office furniture from National

National is a top-flight manufacturer of office furniture. The office desks tend to have durable laminate tops for specific application needs.

7. Get flexible with top shapes

ULT-001-17

One of the best ways to vary out your computer desk ideas is to get flexible with options for the top, which is why you should consider TablEx.

Need to Know the Tips and Tricks?

Buying office furniture — whether for an established company, a startup, or an individual venture — is tricky. That’s where we come in. We try to make sure you get the most bang for your buck on any furniture purchase, using a process we’ve perfected across hundreds of clients.

Remember: we don’t think of it as simply selling office furniture. We create spaces. So whichever of the above computer desk ideas you might be considering (or something else entirely), why don’t we help out?

7 Tips for Practical Ergonomics in the Workplace

ergonomics in the workplace

Slumping at your desk? Feeling constant back pain? Just feel like you’re not at your most productive at work? Believe it or not, ergonomics in the workplace can help. Here, we’re sharing our top 7 tips on how to boost your ergonomics at your desk.

1. Get Closer

Make sure that you’re not sitting too far away from your desk. Pro Tip: If your elbows aren’t at a 90-degree angle, it’s time to move your chair or shift your posture.

2. Get a Footstool

Buying a footstool will not only encourage better posture, it will also just make you feel more comfortable! Swinging your feet underneath your desk all day can lead to serious back issues.

Make sure that you take the pressure off your feet and your back by investing in a footstool!

3. Look into Cushioning

Especially if you’re already dealing with back pain and posture issues, your chair alone might not offer enough comfort. See if you can get a cushion to make things a little more comfortable. If your pain is really intense, look for an option that includes heat! In a pinch, place a small pillow behind your back.

4. How’s Your Screen?

If you have to crane your neck to look down or up at your computer screen, you’re going to have serious pain before you know it. Especially if you frequently work on your phone or tablet, you should also consider picking up a screen supporter or cushion. That way, your neck can be comfortable while you’re checking those emails.

A good test to see if your screen is at the right height? With your head balanced, look directly ahead. You should make eye contact with the center of your screen. If you don’t, place a book underneath it!

5. Lift Your Desk

Of course, sometimes adjusting the height of your desk might be the simplest and fastest solution! Especially if you’re on the taller side, it’s tempting to hunch. There are many options available to raise your desk including new sit-to-stand options.

6. Adjust Chair Height

Be sure that your chair isn’t too high – if it is, you could develop serious circulation issues! You’ll also have to deal with painful swollen ankles. To prevent this, make sure that your chair is between 2-3 feet from the ground and that your feet can easily rest on the floor.

7. Make Sure You Have the Right Furniture

Is your office doing everything it can to get you better ergonomics in the workplace? Furniture like a standing height desk can help with posture, encourage you to take breaks when you need them, and can give you a boost of energy.

Remember that too much sitting at your desk can lead to serious and long-term health issues! Look for furniture that supports you, cushions you, and helps you to be at your most productive.

Want to Learn More About Ergonomics in the Workplace?

When you’re ready to find the right furniture and create the right office environment to make your workday better in every way, we’re here to help.

Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can turn your office into an oasis!

Get Bang for Your Buck When You Buy Office Furniture

Buy Office Furniture

Is your office furniture looking a bit outdated and unprofessional? Perhaps your customers are scared off by the tracks in your desk and the stains on your office chair. Sometimes, all it takes to freshen up a dull workspace is new furniture.

You may already understand the costs involved when you buy office furniture. However, there are ways to save and get more bang for your buck while creating a fresh office space.

Buy Office Furniture: The Tips and Tricks

You don’t have to purchase the most expensive furniture for a chic and put-together work space. Instead, it is smart to save your pennies. Here are some tips and tricks to buying office furniture that everyone will love… including your wallet!

Ask Your Employees and Colleagues

It is important to consider your team when purchasing new office furniture. Start the search by asking your employees or colleagues what they would love to have in their work environment.

Would they rather have standing desks? Would they sacrifice that fancy corner desk for a more comfortable chair? Ask these questions before you purchase – ensuring you won’t have regrets on that end.

Used Doesn’t Mean Useless

Remember that office equipment is switched yearly in some businesses. This could mean that the furniture is still good as new. Used furniture is a great option, especially if you have a smaller office and a tight budget. You can find duplicates of tables, chairs and desks and incorporate them with what you already have.

The idea of replacing the new with something restored is a huge trend in furniture. See if you can find some high-quality pieces that are new to you.

Take Inventory

Is there anything you can salvage? Maybe the desk you use for business meetings is perfectly good to use. You don’t need to replace the furniture, just to replace it.

Instead, go through your office space and take inventory of what needs to be replaced and what does not. Take your time to ensure you do not over purchase when you make a selection. You may be able to save several pieces and integrate the new in with it.

Make sure you look at all areas of your business including conference rooms, office spaces, cubicle space, your own office, and even the bathrooms. You can ask around your office to hear others’ opinions on what needs to be replaced. Maybe they see something you don’t.

Do you feel overwhelmed when it is time to buy office furniture? Don’t. Instead, use these tips and tricks to get the most out of your budget. Remember to take inventory of your space, don’t “discount” used furniture and ask your employees and colleagues about what they want.

You can save money while enjoying your workspace by being money savvy. Enjoy your new office furniture, completely guilt-free!

Questions to Ask Before You Hire an Office Furniture Supplier

Corporate Furniture

You’ve been tasked with choosing office furniture that everyone in your business will like. No pressure, right? If you don’t make the right choices, it will be held against you. But if you do make the right choices, you’ll be a hero. Using the right furniture in your office makes a huge difference in terms of productivity and morale.

For instance, many in the professional world believe that boring furniture can, in fact, make people lazy. Instead, most companies that want their staff to be creative are opting for bright colors and interesting designs.

What type of furniture your company needs depends on how you do business and what you expect from your employees. It also sets the tone for clients and visitors straight off the bat.

Here are some questions to ask when you’re hiring an office furniture supplier for your company:

1. Do They Follow The Latest Trends?

Furniture has come a long way over the years and there’s a lot to keep up with. Standing desks, for example, did not exactly play a starring role back in the 80s in high rise city buildings. Plus, they offer lots of health and productivity benefits.

You can’t possibly be expected to know what’s popular on the market today, but the right furniture supplier will.

2. Who Recommends Them?

Do they have success stories to share? Ask them about existing and former clients who have had some of the same furniture needs. If they’ve outfitted companies that have a large portion of their staff sharing desks because they work remotely much of the time and your company is similar, ask how they adjusted to the need.

3. Are They Able To Incorporate Existing Furniture Into The Mix?

You may be keeping some of your existing office furniture and that’s not an uncommon situation. If you’re just focusing on replacing chairs, you should be able to show them the desks you’re currently using and get suggestions from them.

4. Do They Focus On Ergonomic Corporate Furniture?

Health and wellness are important to employees, especially to the big influx of millennials that are joining the workforce in droves. If the supplier understands that comfort is the priority and not just an afterthought, they’ll be on your page from the start. This is a major selling point for employees if you’re able to tell them that they’re getting furniture that is better for them!

5. Do They Sell New And Used Furniture?

Especially if you’re integrating new furniture in with your old furniture, having the option to buy used furniture is a big asset. There may be designs that you’re looking for that are no longer being produced that would go well with your space. Especially if your office space is dated, incorporating brand new furniture into the mix may not be the best option.

Are you ready to take your furniture game to the next level and work with a company to find solutions that will please the whole office?

Contact Workspace Solutions. We do more than sell corporate office furniture — we provide the whole package from office design, furniture sales, and installation!

5 Surprising Benefits of Using a Standing Height Desk

standing height desk

Are you tired of feeling burnt out, unproductive, and just plain uncomfortable at your desk all day? Have you tried everything, only to see no change in how you feel by the day’s end? Try the latest office trend – a standing-height desk!

There are many benefits of standing-height desks, here are 5 reasons you should have one in your office.

1. It Boosts Your Productivity

Let’s be honest. When you’re spending all day sitting at your computer, it can be easy to feel sluggish. Before you know it, you’ve spent your entire morning scrolling through your Instagram feed and Facebook account – and yet somehow, you still feel exhausted.

A standing desk can help to boost productivity because it ensures that you don’t get lethargic. Instead, your mind will be more clear, you’ll be less prone to distractions, and you’ll be able to take sitting breaks that refuel your mind instead of draining your energy.

2. It Prevents “Computer Hunch”

With the average American worker spending an average of 7 hours out of every work day at a computer, there has been a rise in “computer hunch.” This is the curve in your spine and poor posture that develops from spending your day slumped in a chair, with your shoulders tensed and your back arched.Over time, this can lead to serious medical issues, as it puts added, consistent pressure on your neck and spine.

A standing height desk prevents this, as you’ll be able to keep your back straight all day long, won’t have to hunch to see your screen, and can relax your shoulders.

3. It Keeps You Healthy

Believe it or not, a standing desk can also help to prevent serious health issues, like obesity and even type 2 diabetes.When you sit for a long time, your body doesn’t get enough insulin, and the fasting blood glucose levels in your body will dangerously rise.

More shockingly, another 7-year study showed that for every additional hour you spend sitting every day, your life expectancy decreases by 11%.

4. It Saves Office Space

This is a more practical benefit to getting a standing desk – having more room in your office! As companies are hiring more and more employees, office space becomes a little too close for comfort. Getting standing desks leaves employees plenty of room to walk around and work without feeling crammed into the office space.

5. You’ll Be Less Tired

We’ve all experienced that mid-day office slump that makes us feel as though we could hit the floor and nap at a moment’s notice. What if you could eliminate that, work through it, and have enough energy to go out after the workday ended?

A standing-height desk engages your entire body, so you won’t feel exhausted at the end of the day.

Ready To Get Your Own Standing Height Desk?

Thanks to this post, you now know just some of the benefits associated with a standing height desk. Whether you work from home or in an office, a standing desk will help you to get the most out of your workday.

Want to pick up your own? Visit our Fort Wayne office furniture showroom to try one out!

The Dangers of Too Much Sitting at Work

too much sitting

Here’s a not so fun fact for you: too much sitting is known as the new smoking. That’s exactly how dangerous sitting for long periods of time can be on your body. If you’re currently working in a position that requires you to sit for extended periods, you may be harming your body more than you think.

Too Much Sitting Can Cause Health Problems

You may think that sitting for prolonged amounts of time may not be as dangerous as a physical job, but you’d be thinking wrong. Sitting in your office chair all day can really mess with your body in a lot of different ways.

We’ll take you through the most damaging.

Back Problems

No matter how comfortable your desk chair is, it is still preventing you from stretching out your spine enough throughout the day. You may find yourself slouching, creating a strain on your neck and spine which can lead to more damaging back problems.

The nerves of your spine may also be affected, leading to excruciating back pain.

Sitting too long can also put a lot of pressure on your muscles, leaving you in pain at the end of your work day.

Heart Disease

Yes, sitting at work all day without doing a lot of moving will put you at risk for heart disease. Sitting too often has been linked to higher levels of cholesterol and blood pressure.

Studies show that those who sit who long periods of time are at a 14% increased risk of heart disease as opposed to their nonsitting counterparts.

Risk of Obesity

This may be a no-brainer.

If you are sitting all day, chances are you aren’t getting a lot of exercises. Even if you are heading to the gym right after work. Your average workday is 8 hours, which means that’s most of your day that you’re sitting.

As you’re sitting, your muscles immediately quit working as much. This means that your metabolism slows, your insulin drops, and you may find yourself searching for snacks in the break room.

How to Avoid These Issues

So how can you prevent the above-mentioned issues?

Here are some ways you can combat too much sitting:

  • Start using a stand-up desk so you can stand up throughout your shift if you choose.
  • Take frequent breaks. Use this time to get up and stretch or walk around the office.
  • Grab some water or coffee. Getting up to grab a drink can also get your blood flowing.
  • Use up your lunch or break times for taking small walks with coworkers. You can chat with your work buddy while also getting in some much-needed steps in.

Conclusion

Working eight hours a day can be stressful enough but knowing that your sitting job may be harming your health can add to that stress. Make sure that you’re taking precautions while at work. Take some steps while at work, or invest in a standing desk. These measures will benefit your health greatly.

Have you recently transitioned to a standing desk? Let us know how it is improving your health.