Adaptive Design: Meeting the Challenges of Uncertainty
The far-ranging implications of COVID-19 have influenced every aspect of our lives, which are now more complex, uncertain, and filled with constant change. The factors that previously shaped our workplaces have been fundamentally altered, with many businesses transitioning to work-from-home setups to survive lockdowns.
How can organizations and workers meet the challenges of an unpredictable future? Adaptive design in company buildings and home offices can empower workers to set up their own ideal workplace. These office setups show a glimpse of the workplaces of the future, where organizations can maintain personal connections while maximizing possibilities.
- Harwyn. Designer: Selwyn Blackstone
Although prefabrication is a relatively unknown sector of the construction industry, prefabrication firms have long been in the business of providing cost-effective and convenient structures for businesses and individuals. Prefabrication design engineers often incorporate cutting-edge technology such as 3D manufacturing in their designs, resulting in structures that are completely original and highly adaptive.
Harwyn is a prefabricated pod that can be constructed completely off-site and lowered as a complete unit. Its sleek, compact design makes it an aesthetically pleasing addition to a house, giving the work-from-home employee the complete privacy and control of a dedicated office.
Designed to endure harsh weather conditions, the steel exterior makes an impression with its durability and compatibility with the main house and existing landscape.
- Google Office. Designer: Google’s Real Estate and Workplace Services
Google is famous for their workplace ecosystems, which prioritize employee well-being and collaboration. The company demonstrates its trademark out-of-the-box thinking with modifications that range from quirky to futuristic. An exemplar of adaptive design is the development of a desk that adjusts itself to the worker’s preferences – including monitor positioning and temperature.
To abide by COVID-19 regulations, the company has increased space between workstations, and converted conference rooms into private offices. The company’s goal is to allow workers as much flexibility and freedom as possible, while encouraging productivity and collaboration.
- Zen WorkPod. Designer: Autonomous
The Zen WorkPod by Autonomous is a prefab with a minimalist feel. The brand is known for its affordable, modern furniture that can comprise a comfortable and productive home office. The Zen Workpod expands this concept to a fully self-contained workspace, complete with pre-installed electrical wiring, automated, adjustable desk and chair, air-conditioning and lighting.
As we continue to come up with concepts for the post-pandemic workplace, adaptive design will guide our efforts towards solutions that allow workers to thrive and be productive, whether they choose to return to the office or continue to work at home.