With the economy still in the state that it is, although, arguably you could say that we are back on track and it is getting better… slowly, it is only the largest of companies that are able to kit their offices out with expensive designer office furniture. Not only have they done this, but it seems that companies such as Google, Facebook and Youtube have broken the boundaries of what is an office to create a unique workplace for the “hipsters”.
This year saw the opening of Googles new headquarters in the UK, that is located in Covent Garden in London. Using designers Penson, the search engine giants wanted to create an area that could not only function as an office with standard office furniture such as office chairs and office desks, but they also wanted create an environment that provided amenities for its employees. These amenities include gardens, a gym, and even a place to grow their own vegetables.
The design of the rooms, such as meeting rooms, break out areas etc… as extravagant as they are, have received mixed views. Every room has been designed for the young employee in mind. The designs are extravagant and everywhere you look you are bombarded by imagery that gives the office a unique personality. The argument against this is that the individuality and personality has been taken from the individual employee as it seems they don’t get a look in. In a normal office, the workstation and office chair that you use are just pieces of office furniture and it is the individual that is given the chance to express their personality.
Having said this, I don’t think it was ever Google’s intention to suppress their employees individuality, but what I do think their intention was and is, is to create an office and environment that would keep their employees in longer. I mean, why would you ever want to leave when you have a gym, garden, free food and people that you probably have more in common with than the average joe on the street? I know that if I worked there, I would struggle to find a reason to go home!