5 Office Design and Furniture Trends for 2016

office furniture and design trends 2016

Today’s workplaces need to do more making it mandatory that office furniture and space design continues to evolve. Big influences on both are the ways we communicate, the ways we work, and the role that technology plays in both of these. There’s also a demand for more “lifestyle” feel to offices and a continued emphasis on an office space being “green”. With that in mind, here are 5 of the top office design trends on our radar:

collaboration furniture

  1. Encouraging collaboration
    The move away from traditional individual offices toward open spaces continues. The best use of the open spaces is to have furnishings that can be converted to serve multiple purposes and inspire different types of collaboration.office cubicles and workstations
  2. Respecting privacy
    While an open, collaborative work environment can encourage teamwork and creativity, sometimes privacy is needed. Office furniture designers are coming up with creative ways to make furnishings and accessories easily transform to create more private workspaces when needed.office furniture
  3. “Lifestyle” enhancements
    Amenities like outdoor spaces or in-office coffee lounges are on the rise. The goal is to make the workspace an enjoyable place to spend time and to encourage cross-team conversations and collaboration. Many manufacturers are making outdoor furnishings and lounge-type seating that are laptop-friendly to encourage workers to sit and stay awhile.office technology
  4. Technology
    A well-functioning office must have the infrastructure to support the bandwidth and telecommunication needs of the staff. Effective office design also calls for well-planned access points and a layout to support future technology needs. Desks and work areas are being designed to make it ever easier for workers to “plug in” (and just easily “unplug” and work from somewhere else).environmentally friendly office furniture
  5. Environmentally-friendly
    Energy efficiency and sustainability are expected features for many office spaces. Office furniture companies like Allsteel, Global, and Gunlocke have an environmental commitment to sustainable business practices including the production of furniture that is longer lasting with an efficient use of resources. Some companies and organizations go even further and promote their earth-friendliness to define their identity and attract talent. They make sure that not only are their spaces and furnishings constructed in earth-friendly ways (such as LEED certified construction), they also offer perks such as bike storage or public transportation vouchers for their employees.

The emphasis for office furnishings and space design in 2016 is flexibility and responsiveness to each workspace’s particular needs. Want to bring your office into the modern age? Visit the Workspace Solutions showroom and speak to our seasoned furniture and design professionals — we help our clients work smarter!

Press Release: Announcing New Fort Wayne Office Furniture Location

For Immediate Release:

Local Office Furniture Sales and Design Company Announces New Fort Wayne Location

Workspace Solutions moves to improve efficiency and better serve growing client base.

Workspace Solutions Office Furniture Store Fort Wayne

Brent Stoller & Mike Hunter in front of the new Workspace Solutions Office Furniture campus in Fort Wayne. New location opens mid-September 2014.

Workspace Solutions of Fort Wayne, IN announces its plans to relocate and consolidate from its current two Fort Wayne office furniture locations into one facility at 2200 Production Road. The former Vera Bradley Headquarters building will contain all of Workspace Solutions warehouse and showroom facilities now located at 919 Coliseum Boulevard North and at 256 W Main Street in Downtown Fort Wayne.

The family owned business, currently owned by Brent Stoller, president and Mike Hunter, vice president, began operations in 1978 at the current Coliseum Boulevard location as Eastland Sales, offering used office furniture and equipment. In 1996, the name was changed to Workspace Solutions to better reflect the store’s evolution to offering full service office planning and design, and to selling new product from the top manufacturers of office furniture, such as AllSteel, Hon, National and others.

“We’re excited to get all of our Fort Wayne staff back into one facility,” says Stoller. “We’ve loved being downtown since our purchase of Business Furniture Outlet in 2006, but the 2 locations have created certain communication and logistical challenges.”

Workspace Solutions is one of the few office furniture stores in our area to offer a public showroom for both their new and used office furniture. “We’ll continue that tradition in our new location,” says Stoller, “We’ll showcase our furniture in groupings where you can see how it all would fit together and look in your office, conference room, or lobby. And, all of that in a beautiful professional building that much better reflects the business we are today.”

Another important consideration for Workspace Solutions in this move will be quick access to I-69 & US30. According to Hunter, “We have crews on the road every day, and being closer to the interstate will allow us to become more efficient and to better serve our clients.” Workspace Solutions uses its own trained installation team and own fleet of delivery trucks. They have designed and installed offices as far away as New York City, Los Angeles, and even Hawaii, but their focus continues to be Northeast Indiana, including the Indianapolis, Warsaw, and South Bend areas where the company has satellite sales offices.

All 16 Fort Wayne area employees will move into the new facility, and no jobs will be eliminated according to Stoller. In fact, we already have plans to add more staff as our business has returned to pre-recession levels, and is growing past that to the next level.

“Our primary business plan has always been to exceed our customers’ expectations, and to fashion our business to best be situated to accomplish that. We needed a better, centralized location to do that, and that’s why we’re taking on this project,” Stoller said. “It’s a big project, but a major office move is the type of thing we often perform for our clients.”

Both the current Workspace Solutions locations will remain open until the move is accomplished, and all inventory is sold or moved. A giant “Moving Sale” is anticipated in each current facility. The move to the new facility is schedule for late September, 2014

About Workspace Solutions

Workspace Solutions is a Fort Wayne family-owned business providing office furniture sales and installation, as well as office layout & design with satellite sales offices in Indianapolis, Warsaw, and South Bend.

Brent Stoller

Mike Hunter

Workspace Solutions
(260) 422-9537



The Seat(ing) of Power, Gunlocke at Workspace Solutions

Here at Workspace Solutions, we’re proud to handle many fine lines of office chairs. Some, like La-Z-Boy are very well known, while others, like Gunlocke may be more famous for who’s used them. Every U.S. President from Woodrow Wilson to Jimmy Carter chose a Gunlocke chair for the Oval Office.

Truly successful workspace solutions also deliver long-term satisfaction and ongoing performance. That means building for the customer’s needs, today as well as tomorrow.
Not just anyone can make good on this promise. Delivering it requires a company that demands excellence at every level. Why settle for anything less than a furniture manufacturer who’s continually setting a higher standard on your behalf?

Since the 1920’s, Gunlocke has stayed focused on everything an office client needs to succeed: design, functionality, delivery, quality and value.
Workspace Solutions is proud to be a Gunlocke Dealer for Northern Indiana. Come see Gunlocke Quality for yourself in our downtown showroom at the corner of Main and Webster in Fort Wayne, IN

Gather Your Big Ideas with Allsteel and Workspace Solutions

Back in the idyllic 1950’s, people in the suburbs used to visit one another by meeting along the back yard hedge. What if you could put a hedge in your office, you know, a place that encourages your staff to meet regularly to discuss and exchange ideas? Collaborative work settings are a vital part of contemporary office design. Ideas grow when shared, and ideas create the next profit centers within our businesses. Without ideas, it’s hard to move ahead or even keep up with our competition. Old office walls and cubicles made for privacy, but privacy keeps ideas from sprouting and taking root. How you design your office dictates how your employees will interact with customers, and each other, so it’s important to think of your office layout the same way you think about any technology you invest in to improve productivity and growth.  Workspace Solutions has been designing collaborative offices for years. Now they have new tools from Allsteel to take your office to the next level.

Allsteel has two new lines designed to increase employee collaboration: Gather, and Involve. Learn more here, or contact Workspace Solutions for a demonstration. Gather around the Hedge in your office, and get everyone Involved in the future or your business.

Workspace Solutions is the Allsteel dealer for Northern Indiana, including South Bend, Elkhart, Warsaw, and Fort Wayne. Workspace Solutions can also serve you from their office in Indianapolis.

The White Board goes High Tech at Workspace Solutions

Just about every business meeting today is centered around a “white board.” Notes, and ideas that surface during the meeting get written down. Presentations are made using diagrams and flowcharts. This low tech successor to the messy chalk board has become an indispensable business tool for the 21st century.

Now, Workspace Solutions and Claridge bring the white board into the world of high tech.

Now you can use your white board as a screen, and project any notes, documents, spreadsheets or photos from your computer onto the wall for all to see. There’s also an LCD version of the screen where you don’t even need a projector. You can then write on your white board, and save all of your notes and drawings in a shareable computer file. You can even email the information on your white board. You can have other employees in other offices anywhere around the world sit in on your meeting, and view what’s on your white board exactly as if they were in your conference room.

Today, you know that you could never have a successful meeting without your trusty white board. Once you’ve used a Claridge Solution board, or their LCD C2Touch screens, you’ll never be able to hold another meeting without it.

See it in action in the video, or come to our downtown showroom and see it in person.  How would you use one of these high tech white boards?

Workspace Solutions in Fort Wayne, IN. Every day we’re working for you.

Claridge Solution Board

C2Touch LCD Screen

Take a Stand at Work. You’ve Got Nothing to Lose but a few Pounds

Well, it was good enough for Ernest Hemingway, but you still need more convincing.

We’re talking about standing up while your work, at least standing up for a few hours every day.  The evidence seems to keep mounting for how bad sitting all day is for your health, but now there is a little evidence that shows the benefits as well.

According to a British exercise scientist, Dr. John Buckley, as quoted in the British newspaper, The Daily Mail, staying on your feet an extra three hours daily would burn off eight pounds of fat each year.

Standing for three hours, Dr. Buckley notes, will burn 144 calories.  It’s also good for your circulation.  Sitting for long periods slows down your metabolic rate as well.

New adjustable desks and counter tops are being designed every day that allow you or your employees to spend part of the day standing while working.  Workspace Solutions works with dozens of the best office furniture companies in the world, and can help you design a work space that can help workers gain health and productivity, while losing weight at the same time.

Treadmill Desk the next big thing in Office Furniture?

(Salo LLC/NPR)

First, there was the standing desk, where instead of sitting all day, you worked standing up, a much healthier alternative.  So, it didn’t take long to make the next leap of faith to create the treadmill desk, where you not only stand, but work out while your working.

The creators of the treadmill desks claim that this process actually increases productivity.  It certainly helps you find the time to get in your daily walk, and that should make you a healthier, happier worker for the long run, anyway.

According to NPR, the idea belongs to a Mayo clinic doctor, who believes it’s not only healthy, but also a great way to lose weight, while working.  The Doctor warns people not to jump on and walk eight hours a day to start.  He suggests a half hour on, then a half hour off for three or four days a week to get started.

What would you think if you came to work and found your desk was now a treadmill?

Google’s new London Office Offers us a Sneak Peak at the Future

Google has been  a trend setter in style and management over the past several years. So, when Google builds a new office (this time in London), the rest of us check it out to see if there’s any great new ideas we need to borrow, or at least to see what our office might look like in another ten years or so.  If Google’s London office is any clue, we’ll be seeing more padding on the walls, and a continuation of the trend to encourage employees to collaborate and work from many different parts of the office, technology freeing us from being tethered to our desks.

For fun, anyway, take a look at Google’s new London office in this web article by the website, digital trends.  Click here

What Google ideas would you like to see in your office?


Is there such a thing as a “too quiet” office?

Hon Open Office furniture from Workspace Solutions

Sometimes, less is more.  It seems to be that way in today’s modern offices.  With ultra quiet heating and cooling system, no more clunking of electric typewriters, and emails replacing rining phones, the modern office is quieter than ever, and that seems to be the problem.  It is now easier than ever to be distracted by a conversation, evenone fifty or sixty feet away from your work station or desk. Being able to hear office conversations more easily has also had a chilling effect on having office conversations.  People know that everyone will hear every word.

Still, the advantages of an open office are many, with an increase in collaboration and idea sharing on the top of the list.

When Autodesk, a software company, moved into a an open-plan building in Massachusetts, three years ago, it installed what is known as a pink-noise system: a soft whooshing emitted over loudspeakers that sounds like a ventilation system but is specially formulated to match the frequencies of human voices.

Autodesk ran the system for three months without telling the employees — and then, to gauge its impact, turned it off one day.

“We were surprised at how many complaints we got,” said Charles Rechtsteiner, Autodesk’s facilities manager. “People weren’t sure what was different, but they knew something was wrong. When the system’s on, speech becomes unintelligible at a distance of about 20 feet.”

Others, like Anne-Laure Fayard  a professor of management at the Polytechnic Institute of New York University are studying the issue. According to Fayard, “Everyone is still experimenting with ways to balance the need for collaboration and the need for privacy.”

Sound proofing materials, and designing for privacy are a considerations taken into account by the office planners at Workspace Solutions.  Having a wide variety of office furniture options from the nations’ top providers, as Workspace does, helps as well.   Meantime, it’s nice to know that research continues into the creation of the perfect office.

Extreme Offices

The Bill and Melinda Gatets Foundation built a half billion dollar office facility in Seattle where they hope to solve some of the world’s toughest problems.  The first problem they tackled was how to better utilize office space to use less of it per employee, while increasing collaboration.  The way they accomplished this is strongly influencing new furniture design and office layouts.


To read the whole story, click here