Design that Works: A Multi-Functional Private Office

Our design for the multi-functional private offices at software company Pegasystems Inc., was inspired by the trending decrease in the amount of private areas found in the workplace. As designers, we often challenge our clients to re-assess what job functions require someone to sit in a private office. Most people will say they need an office because they “manage” people and thus need a place to meet privately.

The biggest push-back we get from clients when proposing a smaller office footprint is “How will I be able to host sizable meetings in my office?”. At Pegasystems we came up with a creative solution by utilizing furniture and office tools that are mobile, adjustable, and functional.

Take a look at three ways their 120 SF interior private offices can be transformed based on user needs.

1. Personal office with traditional meeting layout

Private office by Visnick & Caulfield

Private office. Image © Neil Alexander for Visnick & Caulfield

The basic set up shown above is similar to that of a traditional personal office. There is a fixed “bench” along the wall that houses items that are hard-wired and therefore non-mobile.  The bench is paired with a more inviting oval-shaped desk that provides guest-seating for visitors. The glass front is equipped with a sliding door and ties into the open aesthetic of the rest of the Pegasystems space, but remains traditional by allowing for private conversation to occur when the doors are closed.

2. Collaboration and presentation configuration

Private office by VC

Collaboration area. Image © Neil Alexander for Visnick & Caulfield

The mobile oval table desk is set on lockable casters (wheels), allowing it to easily be moved around the space. By including a white-board in the office, the space can quickly be turned into a collaborative meeting area. This makes the office perfect for small presentations, team related work and brainstorming.

3. Web conferencing and computer access set up

adjustable monitor by VC

An adjustable monitor allows for group computer access. Image © Neil Alexander for Visnick & Caulfield

Adding an adjustable computer monitor arm further extended the versatility of the office by providing virtual access to all users. By rotating the chairs and table desk, groups can conduct online meetings, view work-related media such as videos or Powerpoints, and utilize the necessary computer tools needed to conduct business in today’s technology driven workplace.

The office in action. Image © Neil Alexander for Visnick & Caulfield

The office in action. Image © Neil Alexander for Visnick & Caulfield

By carefully thinking through the required functions of a private office, we were able to create an efficient and flexible space for Pegasystems.  We transformed what was once considered to be a small 10×12 interior office space into an open, airy multi-functional space. Thus, it can be used as both a private and public space where one can work, gather, or present. This is a great example of design that works.

Written by Isobelle Hemmers
Edited by Marilyn Shen, Senior Associate at Visnick & Caulfield, LEED, AP, IIDA, NCIDQ 025271