Cette étude a exploré les stratégies employées par les praticiens pour concevoir des espaces de bureau sociaux. Des entretiens approfondis avec quinze architectes d’intérieur expérimentés ont été analysés à l’aide de la théorie de la chaîne des moyens et des fins. Il en ressort que les concepteurs ont pour objectif commun d’encourager les interactions sociales informelles en créant des espaces de détente attrayants, spacieux, reconnaissables et intégrés dans l’espace.
The rise of remote working has highlighted the importance of office spaces that support employees’ social well-being. However, there is a lack of explicit knowledge on how to design such spaces. In order to address this gap, this study explored the strategies employed by practitioners in designing social office spaces. In-depth interviews with fifteen experienced interior designers were analysed using means-end chain theory. This revealed the designers’ common aim to encourage informal social interactions through creating attractive, spacious, recognisable, and spatially integrated breakout spaces. Additionally, communicating group identity, promoting visibility, and offering a cosy atmosphere aimed to foster a sense of connectedness among employees. These findings not only enable more deliberate design decisions but also serve as valuable insights for less experienced designers. Moreover, the framework of design components, affordances and design objectives that emerged from this study can enhance communication between designers and stakeholders involved in office projects. Experienced interior designers were interviewed about completed office projects to understand how they design social offices. They shared five important strategies to enhance co-worker connectedness and eleven strategies to encourage informal social interactions at work. The study identified ten types of social workplace affordances along with their specific design attributes.