Lighting design is being let off the leash in the workplace

The lines between workplace and hospitality have overlapped and we’ve seen hotel design influences emerge in the commercial sector.

The crux of this shift is that we’re now choosing where we want to work, so the office has to become a more vibrant destination. It stands to reason that as the boundaries between work and social merge, we see workplace design borrow principles from the world of destination hotels. In particular, the power of brand appeal and diversity of experience when you’re looking to draw people in and encourage them to return.

There’s arguably no other discipline that can influence behaviour in this way like light. It has the power to engage employees and dictate their emotional response to a brand – this is why lighting design is having its moment in the workplace.

Inspire a sense of belonging

A newfound emphasis on culture and community has put the spotlight on amenity spaces, where employees should feel a marked differentiation through warm ambient light and domestic inspired luminaires.

Make it multisensory

As employees become more attentive to the full sensory experience of a space, light plays a key role by adding depth, enhancing tactile surfaces and creating moments of drama.

Flexibility is the new benchmark

Open plan doesn’t suit everyone in the era of personal choice, so flexibility needs to be built into the lighting design to cater for a mix of cellular and communal spaces.

Design for people not standards

Neurodiversity tells us that design should be first and foremost about the people that use the space and their differing needs – lighting is a valuable tool in this respect because it facilitates an emotional connection.

Tear up the rule book

Reducing light levels has never been more important as every industry looks to reduce energy consumption – it’s a double-edged sword for the lighting designer but an absolutely fundamental part of every brief.

Workplace lighting is an extract from our 2022 Lighting Design Report. If you’d like to know more about the research and trends shaping the way we design with light across different sectors, contact Paul Nulty here for a copy of the report.