Home Working Trends After Covid-19

Over the past six months, Covid-19 has changed the way many of us work forever, which includes the employer-staff relationship. From my perspective, I’m interested in how the pandemic has caused a shift towards an increased use of tech and an uplift in home working trends. I believe in the future this change will alter the way we design our physical working environments.

Happy workers are more productive

In many industry sectors across the world, employers are still encouraging their workers to work from home. Although not everyone prefers home working – as this all depends on how you’re set up – this trend is here to stay. In fact, many people report that they feel happier and less stressed when they can work from home, especially when they no longer need to commute. Plus, home working also gives people more flexibility in their daily lives.

But did you know that some studies show an increase in productivity when people work from home? Featured on the BBC website, a previous study conducted by Bloom showed a 13% rise in productivity for home workers. The recent pandemic has forced more people to work from home than ever before, and although it may not work for some, the general conclusion is that for most people, they have been far more productive working within their home environment.

Video tech and home offices

Of course, one of the principal reasons home working is even possible is purely down to tech. Videocall tech has to be the biggest trend for 2020. Of course, videocalls are not exactly new – many corporate businesses and SMEs have been using Skype for years – but this year it was Zoom that really rose to the fore. According to Ofcom research, it’s estimated that Zoom saw a 2,000% increase from 659,000 UK adults using their platform to 13 million. Wow…

We’ve all seen funny posts on social media about what’s gone wrong on a Zoom call, from cats walking over laptops to children running around in the background. And, as a result, people are thinking more carefully about the room they choose to ‘Zoom’ in. Instead of perching at the dining room table, more and more people are converting bedrooms into home office spaces. And, of course, the interior design of home working spaces suddenly becomes paramount.

Garden rooms and office cabins

But if you don’t have a spare room, there’s another option to consider – the garden ‘office cabin’. As an interior designer, this is the most interesting trend for me by far. Featured on the ThisIsMoney website, according to Google, there has been a steep increase in the number of searches relating to garden offices over the past six months and this has been reflected in sales too.

The rise of the ‘office cabin’ offers lots of opportunities for home workers to create a separate, individual workspace in the garden. Ideal for employees or small businesses, you can ‘detach’ yourself from your main home. By reducing ‘home’ distractions, home workers gain quality work time. When compared to a standard office, they are also free from any distractions caused by background chatter, nearby meetings, and other workers’ phone calls.

Psychologically, garden offices give you the ability to separate your work and personal life. Aesthetically, you can create an inspiring workspace that connects you with the outdoors. Functionally, you can design a workspace that suits your exact needs. And you can even re-design your garden around your office cabin or vice versa…

I’ve worked with local cabin manufacturer, Leicestershire Garden Rooms, who are a small, new yet innovative company, and I’m looking for more connections to collaborate with in this growing arena. It’s really inspiring working alongside cabin manufacturers and their customers to create exciting, as well as functional, interior spaces for home office spaces.

Do you manufacture office cabins? Are you thinking of building a garden office? If so, I’d love to have a chat to see how we can work together – call 07943 878462 or email: hello@spginteriordesign.co.uk