SDI Architecture, an international architectural and interior design firm that develops distinct, custom designs, centered upon the user’s experience, is seeing the impact of zoom fatigue on both office design and office location firsthand. Recently the Boston firm has experienced a significant increase in demand for modifications to workplaces as companies prepare for a larger number of employees returning to the office. These changes are meant to keep employees and employers safe as COVID-19 continues to spread while we await vaccination numbers to reach a point where communities have achieved herd immunity.
“Earlier in the pandemic we saw a significant change in the areas where new construction was taking place as businesses moved out of the city and into suburban office parks which were less expensive and provided more outdoor space,” said Ben Williams, owner of SDI Architecture. “Now we are getting requests from those same companies to further modify these offices to allow for more employees in their workplaces at the same time, while maintaining safe distances and interactions.”
There are a host of factors fueling the employee move back to the office, including the return to full-time, in-person learning for students, giving parents the option to work from an office, as their role as home-schoolers is coming to a welcomed end. Additionally, as the weather warms and vaccinations rise, COVID test positivity rates and new cases continue to fall in recent weeks. However, it is the need for social interaction and a desire to reduce screen time in favor of in-person meetings that SDI hears as the most significant driving factor.
“While we don’t anticipate that most employees will be in the office five days a week, we do expect a move to a healthy mix of at-home and in-office work ,” continued Williams. “People are starving for personal interaction. In this new normal, most individual work will be accomplished at home, and the office will be primarily used as a gathering place for meetings and socialization. We know this is the case, as these are the types of modifications that companies are asking for.”
While many companies and organizations will continue to offer remote work as an option for employees, a year of social distancing has made many of us miss the workplace interactions we once took for granted.
ABOUT SDI ARCHITECTURE
SDI Architecture is an international architectural and interior design firm that is disrupting the design industry through a collaborative design process that engages the client and consultants in developing distinct, custom designs, centered upon the user’s experience. SDI Architecture creates distinct designs that capture the client’s identity through the visual and physical experience of the built environment. We achieve this by working hand-in-hand with clients to understand their mission, culture, audiences and goals. We then use that knowledge to design a customized space that addresses their needs. For businesses, that includes maximizing productivity, efficiency, and employee satisfaction and health.
SDI Architecture is headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts with design offices in India and the U.S. For more information on SDI Architecture please visit https://www.sdi.archi.