How to Design a Functional Home Office

4 March 2021

Create productive workspaces without compromising on style or interior design.

One trend that is here to stay is home offices, with many companies introducing flexible working as part of their standard working process. Because of this, there is a rise in demand for home office spaces that are not only functional but stylish and in keeping with the overall interior design of a home.

Compact home office next to architectural glazing installation

Functionality

There are many ways to create a functional home office, including taking elements from commercial architecture/interior design and integrating these into residential properties. Keep reading for our take on how you can create the perfect home office that is practical without compromising on style.

The number one factor to consider when creating a work space is functionality, as it is imperative for any home office to be tailored towards productivity. The 5 human senses (touch, sight, hearing, smell and taste) should be considered early on in the process. Although touch, sight and hearing are the most important senses when working from home, smell and taste are also relevant and shouldn’t be forgotten.

Home office with pale colour scheme, houseplants and a large window above desk

Human Senses

A home office should be sufficiently far from the kitchen that smells do not act as a distraction throughout the work day. It is equally as important to create separate spaces for eating, rather than using the home office for everything. This helps productivity levels to stay high. To avoid food and smells becoming a distraction, home offices should be well ventilated and opening window systems should be incorporated.

Onto another of the human senses, hearing is paramount when carrying out any phone or video calls. Most job roles require regular meetings and a lot of rooms in a typical house are not equipped for good sound quality. Consider incorporating soft materials in the space, as hard surfaces can deflect sound and create and echo if there is nothing to absorb the sound. Soft furnishings and accessories can eliminate any sound issues, as well as adding a level of comfort.

Touch and sight go hand in hand when designing a work space, due to the need for a desk set up in the majority of cases. To make sure productivity levels are maximised, any desk chairs, computer screens and accessories (mouse, keyboard, phone) should be organised at a comfortable distance in front of you. The position of your accessories will depend on the chair used, persons height and arm length. For more information on desk ergonomics, head to the workfit website.

Home office using neutral colour scheme, wooden furniture and earthy wall colours

Natural Light

It is a proven fact that natural light enhances general wellness as well as productivity and as such, many commercial offices incorporate large elevations of glass in their designs. In residential dwellings, home offices should always have a window or door that allows as much natural light into the room as possible. The range of aluminium systems from IQ Glass are some of the most minimal designs on the market, with a focus on minimising frame and maximising glass surface.

Home office directly beneath a large frameless window

Solar Shading

Where glazing is used in home offices, solar shading must be considered to avoid any glare on screens and to keep the space a comfortable working temperature all year round. There are many solutions available from Grants Blinds, including concealed blind systems, that are designed to maintain a minimal interior design. If concealed blind systems are specified, these can be automated or even built into a complete smart home system. For a softer approach, recessed curtain tracks are a great option. With finishing details concealed in the building finishes, these curtain solutions are designed to accompany minimally framed glazing systems. 

Soft white curtains on a recessed curtain track

Internet

It goes without saying that a strong internet connection is necessary when working from home. This could involve a second Wi-Fi router or in cases where the Wi-Fi router is not close to the home office, a Wi-Fi booster that can be placed in the home office to ensure the internet works well in that space. Smart home technology experts IndigoZest can assist with internet connectivity, creating seamless solutions that blend into the interior design effortlessly for a clean look with clear connection.

Woman working from home, with laptop, in brightly lit space

Zoning with Internal Glazing

Zoning has become a huge interior design trend over the past year and it is important to be able to separate workspaces from living spaces. Internal glazing systems can be used to separate rooms, whilst allowing natural light to flow freely through the floor plan. Dedicated work zones require the ability to shut off from personal spaces, particularly when the job involved regular calls and meetings, this will enhance productivity.

Equally, once the work day is over or the weekend arrives, it’s important o be able to close the door on work and enjoy personal time. A great solution that meets these requirements is an internal sliding glass door. Due to the nature of sliding door systems, these do not require additional space either side of the door so this space can be used for additional storage or furniture. If a broken plan layout is desired, sliding doors can be installed in a pocket door configuration, to slide into a hidden wall cavity. This solution would be perfect for home offices that function as multi-purpose spaces, as the door leaves a completely open aperture when open.

Internal glass sliding doors with an opaque glass finish

Professional Environments

Once all these factors have been considered, the home office space should be clear from cutter to mimic a professional environment. Try to separate work from home life as much as possible, whether that’s choosing a different colour scheme for the room or keeping the space completely neutral. For more advice about creating a functional home office, get in touch with the team who can help with design advice, specification and technical details.

Home office utilising natural materials such as wood and leather to create professional environment



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