Insights into Office and Workspace Design

Our Top Five Hybrid Working Furniture Solutions for Your Office Transition.

Hybrid working has been a common trend changing the office structure over the last few years, with an exponential increased need over this past year. As we endeavor to navigate our new normal and new balance of working while still being COVID compliant, flexible and efficient, we have highlighted some of our best hybrid working furniture solutions to make the transition for your company as smooth as possible.

These furniture solutions are aimed to help reduce; in office contact points, lessen the cleaning and sanitization time. give private works spaces for distraction free working, and limit the numbers of in person meetings while still giving a central space for teams to work effectively together. And while team members do not have dedicated desks, or assigned seating, ensuring we are thinking about the small details that are often overlooked when transitioning the office to the future new work style.

EMPLOYEE LOCKERS

Lockers and safe storage solutions are an important need for staff, but often overlooked. Giving staff a safe and convenient storage solution that are intuitive, user friendly without technical issues are an important piece of the hybrid office. The Align Locker by Allsteel can either be permanently assigned or reassigned daily with simple resets as needed. Freeing up staff from having to carry all essential working and personal materials, such as photos, keeping the personal touch, back and forth from the office. This also reduces traffic to gather common items as much as possible.

PRIVACY LOUNGE SEATING

A private seating area where staff can work, make phone calls, and let others know they do not want to be interrupted at this time are a very helpful tool in the hybrid office. One of the common highlights we hear about working from home are the reductions in interruptions. While pets and kids may join zoom meetings, staff working from home tend to not be interrupted as much as in the office with quick “how-do-1”, being pulled into last minute meetings, or wondering where the favourite stapler has been moved to. Having a clear area to work and not be interrupted will be essential piece moving forward in the hybrid work office. ‘The HON Astir is a comfortable and stylish private working solution.

MOBILE ACOUSTIC TOUCH DOWN ZONE

Nook Pods are a wonderful solution for mobile private or individual meetings. A quiet zoom call, one on one or client meeting they keep numbers small and intimate. There are many customizations and options available with the Nook Pod, from lighting, power, and even brainstorming tools like white boards. There is a Nook Pod solution for every office.

CENTRAL WASTE/RECYCLING CENTERS

As we are working to reduce touch points. An essential part of the office is sanitization and garbage collection. Lunches are now consumed at a distance, and desks are chosen for the day, it is critical to have a functional garbage and recycling system. The Artopex Axel2 not only, functionally collects waste, it fits seamlessly in the office design.

FREESTANDING SPACE DIVISION

A pavilion like the Beyond series from Allsteel is a gorgeous design element to add a comfortable private work setting and reduce meeting numbers. While completely flexible to meet the needs of your office, it’s a brilliant element for the hybrid working office to add beauty and functionality.

To learn more about Hybrid Working and how our consultative approach can prepare you and your office moving forward visit cdispaces.ca or email customerservice@cdispaces.ca, click contact us, or submit a quote. And check out our social media accounts, we are always sharing new ideas and ways to make your office more efficient and flexible moving forward!

Top 5 Corporate Flexible Home Office Furniture Solutions for 2021

The past year’s events changed the way we work; our offices are beginning to look much different than they did this time last year. Corporate offices still need to function and be flexible for employees no matter the location, while still meeting the needs for office workers to get value and function out of their workspace. Agile workspaces continue to be on the rise as organizations look for ways to accommodate in the “new normal” era. CDI Spaces has been evolving with these dynamic methods of working over the years, and we have dedicated ourselves to researching and understanding what motivates employees in a fresh space. We recently sat down with Derek Burrowes, our dynamic Corporate Furniture Specialist, to pull together a list of our top 5 most exciting office products that have been shown to increase focus and productivity.

“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future. ~ John F. Kennedy

ARTOPEX MILLIE DESK

This height adjustable desk with casters will allow you to vary your position throughout the day. Thanks to the integrated pneumatic adjustment system, the surface can reach a height of 43 ½". Sitting or standing, your workspace ergonomics will be optimized to their full potential with Millie.

HON HOME OFFICE DESIGNER

It’s important that you have the right pieces to equip you at home, for the best functional yet inspirational space. With Hon’s unique furniture standards program, it allows us to customize your entire space to make it adaptable, flexible, and resilient to suit your needs.

WORKSPACE48 HOME OFFICE

The Agile sit stand desk allows flexibility options for the home office. For the ones who want to move around while thinking, this adjustable desk allows you to take your work up a level, with the press of a button. In addition to mobility, this solution boasts lockable storage options as well as electrical for easy connectivity to and from the office.

ESI MOTIFIC HEIGHT ADJUSTABLE LAPTOP TABLE

As phones, tablets and laptops become personal accessories for mobile work and life, a workspace that seamlessly accommodates digital devices is imperative. The Motific mobile tech table provides users the ability to move through their days, from workstation to third space, connected to digital technology. This lightweight and easy-to-move table offers a sturdy design that can support users work gear.

TURN YOUR DESK INTO A SIT-STAND

Esi’s Lotus RT -2 workstation boasts Smooth Lift technology with easy dial weight adjustment allowing users to transform their workspace into a flexible one. With clamp mounts adhering to their worksurface and adjustable accessories, moving your screens into ideal positioning has never been easier. Complete with a 4-pivot point design, the gas spring arm is able to move 90 degrees in each direction.

STUDENTS BRING THE COLOURS TO THE CLASSROOMS

Colours psychology is an increasingly higher role in the consideration of education environments. Colours choices impact the teaching and learning process and influence students’ attitudes and behaviours. However, too many colours can overwhelm students. Read the article below by our Student-Centred Classroom, Craig Ward, to learn how to incorporate colours in the classrooms to bring positive benefits to students.

THE EFFECTS OF COLOURS ON CHILDREN

It has been found that carefully planned colour schemes positively affect academic achievement of elementary students and especially students of kindergarten age. The proper use of colour can convert an atmosphere that is depressing and monotonous into one that is pleasing, exciting, and stimulating. Such change in colour schemes reduce absenteeism and promote positive feelings 

Although children were not able to identify exactly how specific colours make them feel, they often associate bright colours with positive feelings and dark colours with negative feelings. Colours can used as a tool to create an engaging learning environment for students and boost their moods. 

Edmonton Christian School incorporated effectively both warm and cool colours in their learning commons area. 

Colours liked by students can influence their muscular tension and motor control. Warm colours have been known to cause slight elevations in blood pressure in children, while cooler colours caused slight drops in blood pressure. Likewise, optical stimulation using warm colors and brilliance of lighting will cause increases in muscular tensions, respiration rate, heart action, blood pressure and brain activity. 

For example, orange colours encourage creativity and enthusiasm; yellow colours evoke feelings of happiness, and summer. A little touch of orange and yellow can brighten learning environments, making it more joyful.  

Cool colours and dim lighting bring about reverse effects, such as muscles relaxing more, and sleep being facilitated. In colour psychology, green and blue colours connect children with natureocean, and skyand give students and teachers the feelings of calmness, relaxation, trust, and safety.

TOO MANY COLOURS CAN OVERWHELM STUDENTS

Once upon a time, it was common to add as many bright colours as possible to collaborative and common areas. However, for some students, too many colours can be overwhelming. With their different coloured t-shirts, shoes and accessories, the students themself bring the colours to the space. Nowadays, it is recommended that schools and educational institution used mostly neutral and ungendered colours to create a more equal, opportune environment for students to learn. 

At CDI Spaces, we have a great collection of student chairs and desks with over 24 different colours that we can match to your preexisting chairs in the classroom. We believe no chair should stand out. We take great care to add any kind of chair (standard, coking, wiggle) in a way that can seamlessly blend in with the rest.   

If you have any questions on how to incorporate colours into your learning environments, contact us today at 1-888-230-2280 or customerservice@cdispaces.ca for a complimentary consultation. 

The Future of Post-Secondary – Learning Alone Together

COVID-19 forced post-secondary institutions to quickly transition to online. Almost a year since the pandemic began, online learning continues to be the “new normal”. Having worked closely various institutions on their post COVID-19 strategy to bring students back to campus, below are our thoughts on the future of post-secondary.

SAFETY IS THE PRIMARY CONCERN

Safety is the top priority for post-secondary institutions’ leaders as they plan to bring students to campus for in-person delivery. Students and staff will not feel as comfortable as they did before in large group setting as physical distancing measures continue to linger. Tactics used to promote physical distancing, such as two-way tape, directional traffic, and foot markers, will likely become long lasting. In addition, there is an emerging need for touchless interaction, for example, automatic door openers, card access, motion dispensing units, etc. These technologies avoid individuals touching objects physically and prevent contamination. 

It is also highly likely that we may begin to see some schools use distance learning as a unique aspect of the curriculum going forward. While being able to incorporate the pandemic restrictions in an innovative way, it may also be functional in reducing the number of individuals in classrooms.  

QUIET, INDIVIDUAL STUDYING SPACE

Ongoing research is being conducted to find out what is working in remote campuses, and what is not. Success in studying from home can depend on whether or not a student has access to quiet space. Unfortunately, most students live in small apartmentsor share their space with others and may find most of their surroundings to be distracting or ineffective.  

What online classrooms a.k.a ZOOM, lack compared to in-person classrooms is the opportunity for students to change their learning environment and have a versatile collaborative experience. As a result, we are likely to see the adoption of smaller group settings, more virtual classrooms and individual study areas going forward. In 2021we predict that as restrictions easemore students will come to campus to use individual studying areas, while integrating virtual lessonsStudents will get the benefit of a well-designed, structured learning environment, with the ability to practice physical distancing.  

HY-FLEX LEARNING

Hybrid-flexible (HyFlex) learning allows students to learn from an instructor’s pre-recorded class at their own pace on their own time. Spaces will now need to be addressed to accommodate the rise of this new way of learning. Post-secondary educators will take this opportunity to rethink how collaborative classrooms should be redesigned to align with this trend. This HyFlex model has given us the ability to transform and maximize previously underutilized space and encourage students to take more ownership in their learning. Generally, students are taught at an early age to take responsibility for their learning during their K-12 years.  Hy-flex learning allows new undergraduates to customize their learning style and pace which helps ease the transition of entering the post-secondary realm  

We ensure that the furniture we provide is dynamic and flexible. We have made changes to accommodate new restrictions and provide exceptional service to all our furnished campuses. For a consultation with our campus specialist on how we can future proof your post-secondary spaces, get in touch with us at 1.888.230.2280 or  customerservice@cdispaces.ca.

WE CAN’T WAIT TO COME TO THE OFFICE, BUT HOW?

Our ideas surrounding the workplace environment have drastically evolved since COVID-19. The workplace may no longer be a single location, but an ecosystem of locations and experiences to support safety, functionality, convenience, and wellbeing. Having helped many organizations navigate the uncharted waters of COVID-19, we have put together our top ideas.

OFFICE WILL NOT GO AWAY

Over the past year, remote working has received a lot of love; however, we believe that the traditional office will not go away any time soon. A physical office is a place where we come to connect and build relationships with our colleagues and stakeholders. No matter how hard we try to leverage those social interactions through Zoom/ Teams/ Skype meetings, we cannot replicate the whole in-person experience. For example, casual conversations in the photocopy room, or A’s body language while talking to B satisfies our hunger for human connection. Clients typically want to come and have in-person meetings because they want to have a feel for our corporate culture and working environment, which cannot be fully exhibited through online meetings.

Mentorship also plays a big part in the office, especially with post-secondary graduates and students entering the workforce. Many people find job shadowing or working closely with others in a particular workspace to be an effective way of learning. At the end of the day, office spaces are carefully built and designed with a variety of settings catered to the infrastructure of the company. The home environment can work for some of the time or some of those activities, but it is likely not going to be as effective as a customized environment with minimal distractions.

Credit: Utopix Pictures

PHYSICAL DISTANCING IS THE TOP OF MIND

With COVID-19 still lingering, physical distancing is top of mind for many employers and business owners when it comes to office furniture solutionsThere are a few options to help organizations create spatial barriers for employees, as they filter back into the office 

  • Utilizing glass or plexiglass to control the spread of any virus. The glasses give the employees the protection they need, especially in high traffic areas, or where their workstations are not big enough to allow physical distance.  
  • Hotelling stations can also be a great solution. This is a method of reserving office space and resources in an office, instead of assigning employees to a regular workspace. 
  • Hot Deskinglike hotelling stations, allows employees to reserve an office space; however, it is based on first-come, first-serve basis. 

Adding further accessories to the existing furniture is another alternative to create physical distancing barriers. Some barriers can make the space look dense, so it is recommended to use clear materials, allowing natural light to beam through.  

In addition, creating some storage space for employees’ personal belongingusing staff lockers is also encouraged. Not only does this keep their items safe while on their job, but it also helps avoid spreading germs among people. 

Credit: Utopix Pictures

HYBRID WORKING MODEL – THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS

The Hybrid working model combines remote and onsite work and continues to be the trend for 2021. Many employers have chosen this option because it allows employees to reduce the number of people in the office for safety and physical distancing due to COVID-19. However, hybrid working is not meant to be a temporary solution, but a response to allow more flexibility for team members. Almost a year since the pandemic beganand one thing we have all learned is that working remotely offers great benefits, such as less commute, and better work-life balance. However, it does not work for every team or industry. The feedback that we received was that many teams did not generate the same results they had prior to working from home due to the lack of collaboration. Nonetheless, coming out of COVID-19, the hybrid working model is a great way for employees to have the flexibility to work remotelyas well as giving organizations the opportunity to rebuild corporate culture at their own pace. 

ACTIVITY-BASED WORKING MODEL

The Activity Based Working model (ABW) used to be considered only for the most progressive companies. Now, it has become more versatile than ever, as the pandemic has shown the need for organizations to be able to adapt quickly to succeed. Teams that utilize the full ABW model prove to be more resilient and able to embrace adversity. ABW is much more than just a physical space, ire-defines the way we work involving people, technology, and space.   

In ABW, the workplace is no longer organized by departments, projects, teams, or confined to a particular place. An ABW office is specifically designed around work activities that employees need to perform at work. The purpose of this model is to empower workers to create the optimal work environment they need to do their job and deliver an outstanding experience to their clients. It also appeals to employers as it gives them the option of accommodating more people in fewer square meters, reducing overall real estate spend  

If you have any questions about office furniture solutions, book a complimentary consultation with us today at 1-888-230-2280 or customerservice@cdispaces.ca. 

Top 5 Office Furniture Products of 2020

With recent events changing the way we work; our offices are likely beginning to look much different than they did at the beginning of the year. 2020 has introduced new ways of working, placing a greater emphasis on fluid working environments but one thing has remained constant – the need for office workers to get the full value out of their working space.  Agile working and hybrid working are on the rise as organizations are looking for ways to incorporate working remotely and working from home in the “new normal” era. CDI Spaces has been supporting and evolving with these dynamic ways of working over the past years, and we have dedicated ourselves to researching and understanding what makes employees motivated and refreshed in a space. We recently sat down with Derek Burrowes, our Corporate Furniture Specialist, to pull together a list of our top five office products that have been shown to increase focus, productivity, and efficiency. 

The Allsteel Altitude A8 Desk

The A8 desk is one of our top sellers in workstation productivity and ergonomic design. Integrated with wire management and a variety of privacy screens, the A8 is our all-in-one solution for any office configuration, especially in a time where we are seeing a higher priority on modular designs. The A8 places an emphasis on designing elements that move and conform with its userwith the screens secured on to the desk, you can choose to sit or stand at this desk, without sacrificing the needed degree of privacy and separation.  

We also understand that different degrees of privacy are needed for different professions. If your profession requires ongoing collaboration and ideation, you have the option to install straight, side to side panels to allow lateral communication. Also available are L-shaped panels for aisle workstations, and full, U-shaped panelling for full270-degree enclosure 

Additional features include the hidden cord management system, which leaves your wires tucked away underneath the desk in a compact manner. While available in a variety of finishes, the A8 desk can be custom ordered with rounded corners, to provide a softer design and a more ergonomic configuration for your spaces.  

The HON Ignition Chair

With all the time we spend sitting in front of our computers (at least 8 hours per day), choosing the right chair has tremendous impacts on our posture, health, and productivity. It would be a big mistake if we did not include the HON Ignition Chair in the list of our top five corporate office products this year. 

 It is a great ergonomic task chair that supports everybody's type, work style, and office activity. Affordable and customizable comfort” are the words we want to give for the Ignition Chair. It has three adjustable back heights, two seat sizes, and four arm styles that fit the 5th or the 95th percentile. In addition, its three tilt controls allow you to adjust the chair easily for collaboration and individual tasks. When it comes to price, the HON Ignition Chair is a great solution for organizations that have a small budget, while wanting to provide their employees with high-quality, well-designed, and health-supportive furniture. Available in assorted colour combinations, you can customize mesh, upholstered or ReActiv backs to fit with your overall corporate branding and preferences.  

Artopex Lockers

Providing locker storage for employees is highly recommended to organizations that are looking to move to a hybrid working model for safety and hygiene reasons. Artopex Lockers is one of our favourite furniture as it comes with a variety of sizes, colours, and configurations for different uses and spaces, with or without doors. You can group them along a wall, or at the end of benching tables, and even create a collaboration island. 

Not only does it impress the users with versatility, but also the security. You do not have to worry too much that someone may know your password, as the combination of the Noki electronic locking system for lockers automatically resets after each use. 

Allsteel Park Planters

Having been working from home and confined to four walls make you miss nature. With a minimal, sleek design, Park Planter is a great item to have if you are thinking to incorporate some plants into your office. It comes in varied sizes and heights, allowing you to be creative with different indoor plants. Moreover, it has also been used as aaccessory for offices to store books, office documents, as well as cleaning supplies. 

Hotbox 2

For office fashion aficionados, Hotbox 2 is must for their office bag collections this year. It is expertly designed for office workers who want to have the flexibility to work at whatever desk they want, while still having their essentials at hand. 

Speaking of optimum organization, the bag has plenty of space with two main sections. The larger compartment can hold a 13-inch laptop, notebook, books, etc., while the front section has a whiteboard to let you make quick notes on the go.  

Working remotely means multiple digital devices, on top of pens and papers that we must carry at a time to move from one place to anotherAlso, take into consideration, the HotBox 2 comes with two removable pen pots and a phone/tablet stand. Not only that, but the handle is carefully designed with a soft grip and an optional shoulder strap, allowing you to easily take your HotBox 2 anywhere 

Last but not leastit has a sense of personalization and familiarity that we all crave when working remotely: the feeling of sitting at a desk decorated with our personal items. The well-thought-out design of HotBox 2 makes sure you can feel at home while working remotely, as it has an a-built-in business card holdera slide-on photo frame for your photos with friends, families, and pets, and a lot of space for small, sensational items like plants or your kid’s crafts. 

Contact Us Today!

For details or a quote on any of our five recommended classroom products, get in touch with us at 1.888.230.2280 or hello@cdispaces.ca to get help from more specialized corporate office furniture consultants like Derek Burrowes. 

Top 5 Classroom Products of 2020

2020 has been a year of some big changes, but one thing has remained constant – the need for students and children to get the full value out of their education. Student learning is not a one size fits all model, and neither are classrooms. Over the last 30 years, CDI Spaces has been dedicated to providing educational and classroom furniture that supports the psychological findings behind child learning and development. We sat down with Craig Ward, our Classroom Consultant, to put together a list of our top five classroom products that have helped both students and teachers do their best over the last year.  



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More and more companies nowadays have torn down walls, eliminated private offices, and replaced cubicles with open and activity-based spaces to make people more connected, encouraging collaboration and innovation. However, this office design is not a one-fit-all solution. Because an office is a mixture of extroverted and introverted individuals and they each thrive in different work environments. An open-office concept may work for extroverts who tend to be productive in environments where they can bounce off ideas with others. It, nonetheless, can be a nightmare for many introverts who crave quiet and alone time during the day.

How to design and furnish a workspace that attracts both introverts and extroverts and allows them to operate comfortably, read more below!

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