Insights from NeoCon 2016: The Premier Trade Show for Office Design Pros

Insights from NeoCon 2016: The Premier Trade Show for Office Design Pros on

A jungle gym at the office? One of the many interesting products at NeoCon 2016. Source: Azure Magazine

Learn about the latest developments and trends in the industry

For almost half a century, NeoCon has been synonymous with the commercial design industry. This important trade show is attended by thousands of professionals who get together to learn, network, and discuss the latest trends and innovations every year.

NeoCon 2016 was very well-attended – especially by the design community – a sign that there’s a lot of optimism in the industry. And as always, Compass Office Solutions was on hand. So, what were our main takeaways from the show?

User adjustability

This was one of the big themes of NeoCon. Gone are the days when a company could buy 100 of exactly the same item to fill an office. That just doesn’t fly anymore. All employees are different and they want to be recognized as individuals. This means that businesses need to invest in furniture that can be adjusted for each person so that they can feel comfortable, respected, and carve out their own space.


Along the same lines, employees don’t want to feel like nameless office drones. They want to showcase their personalities by decking out their workspaces with their own unique style and flare. A desk is okay, but workers are craving other types of display areas so they can stand out and feel at home.

Private Space

Open office designs are still popular, but it’s becoming clear that they do not work for all types of situations. Sometimes private conversations and phone calls are necessary, and businesses have to adapt. This means incorporating work areas where employees can be sure of their privacy. Space as well as acoustics have to be considered when creating these portions of an office, and both of these factors can be accommodated with flexible modular set ups for conference areas, as well as through the use of sound-deadening materials.

An office set-up that includes elements of home design. Source: Allsteel

An office set-up that includes elements of home design. Source: Allsteel

Home Away from Home

Another prevalent theme at NeoCon was a continued blurring of the line between home and work in terms of design. Employers know that their workers are looking for a homey feel in an office, and this is why they are including more residential design elements, such as comfy seating, softer lighting options, and even a conference table that looks a bit like a dining room table.

Freedom is key

Employees don’t want to be chained to their work stations anymore, and companies are creating more freedom through innovative office designs. This trend extends to the tech that’s being used. For example, the use of laptops has surpassed desktops, and Wi-Fi systems needs to be able to quickly accommodate anyone, no matter what platform they are working on or where they want to set up shop.

Every year, NeoCon introduces new ideas that we at Compass Office Solutions make sure to pay close attention to. Be sure to keep up with us to see how we will be incorporating them into our design principles. And for more information on the latest office design trends or how to give your workers the space they crave, contact us today!