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Gen Z and making office space work for everyone

Gen Z and making office space work for everyone

We’ve become well versed on the needs and wants of millennials; what drives them, how they like to work and how we can help them achieve a happy work-life balance. But it’s time to think about the next generation to enter the workplace – Generation Z. By 2020, four generations will be working side-by-side, so office space must be able to accommodate multiple needs. At Aztec, we understand how important it is that workspace works for everybody, so we’ve outlined some of the changes we’re likely to see as Gen Z enters office life, and how we can make sure that office space suits the needs of everyone using it.

Co-working space and hot-desking

Millennials made real strides in normalising working from home, resulting in growing numbers adopting a more flexible working week and eschewing the 9-5 routine. Gen Z is no exception and, as working life becomes ever more fluid, we are likely to see more offices moving away from cubicle desking in favour of more flexible, informal co-workspace and hot-desking, facilitating collaboration and removing the need for dedicated desk space. Lockers provide a secure space to store personal belongings and any sensitive information.

Comfortable seating and ergonomics

While collaborative workspace and more flexible seating arrangements can work for everyone, it is important to remember the need for comfortable seating to suit people of all ages and abilities. While benches and high stools can look great and suit those blessed with youth, ergonomic design is an important consideration, providing furniture that is suitable for everyone. Aztec’s in-house joinery workshop is often tasked with providing businesses with a range of furniture to suit people of different ages and abilities within the same office environment.

Quiet office space and privacy

While collaborative work stations and the removal of cubicle desking has been widely adopted as the ‘future office’ model, it’s important to incorporate spaces that allow quiet reflection, removal of distractions and privacy. Whether a serene breakout space, private meeting rooms or sound-proofed phone booths, it is possible to create an office environment that provides for everyone’s needs and allows everyone to perform to their best.

Rooftop gardens, games rooms and office perks

Like millennials, Gen Z is tech native, born with an iPhone in their hands. Yet, these individuals crave social interaction in a way that millennials don’t. This social requirement should be incorporated into the way workspace is configured, including such space to chat and engage but not at the expense of others in the workplace who may find it distracting. These spaces shouldn’t be central to the office, but configured in such a way that it can be enjoyed or avoided depending on individual preference. While standout spaces like rooftop gardens and games rooms aren’t a new feature in offices, we will see them adding real value as Gen Z enters the workforce, becoming some of the most frequently used spaces, no longer just for lunchbreaks and Friday drinks.

Gender inclusive offices

In the coming years, more progressive views on gender is likely to result in gender inclusive offices – “female” and “male” bathrooms will more frequently be replaced with gender inclusive arrangements, making for a more cost-efficient solution that will promote gender inclusiveness in the workplace.

Natural light

Gen Z has grown up with a greater awareness around the benefits of nature, wellness and the availability of natural light. As a result, we’re likely to see this filter into office design, with greater adoption of biophilia – to the benefit to all generations. Offering a unique turnkey approach, Aztec can deliver fit-out or refurbishment projects from start to finish. We even have our own in-house joinery workshop, creating bespoke office furniture. Contact Aztec Interiors and speak to our team of professional office fit-out specialists – we’d love to help.

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