Command Center Consoles: Combining Ergonomics and IP

When it comes to command center console furniture, the NASA look of yesteryear is long gone. Heavy, metallic consoles and equally weighty wooden furniture are considered relics of the past, in a bit of the same way that NASA space shuttles have gotten sleeker and more agile. The latest approach to designing command centers is minimalist, with thin shapes and lines and even lighter materials, like faux wood, Lucite, and Plexiglas. Desks that look like above-ground submarines have been replaced with polished tables with ample leg room like you’re flying first-class.

While this type of command furniture stood out in the past, today’s goal is for it to blend in and perhaps even be something you might see at a tech startup. In fact, the sleek, sophisticated look of offices like Google and even your standard IT department has spread its influence over everyone and every industry, including that of consoles and command center furniture. Why has this happened? Because businesses and agencies are realizing that creating a more comfortable environment for employees boosts office retention and productivity. Plus, it really just looks a whole lot nicer.

Keep it ‘Low-Profile’

Look at any flat-panel monitor and you will notice that thin is in. HD and 4K displays affix to any wall without looking clunky and distracting, whereas monitors of the past were heavier and jutted out. This limited space for employees and maybe even made them feel a big claustrophobic. Today, these updated technologies generally just look more visually appealing, which is another reason why a more austere, conservative approach to command center design has become popular.

ground control center containing blue, dual operator station with task lighting, chairs, and monitors

The main goal right now for people working in control rooms is to make installed equipment accessible within the furniture without making it visible. You want to be able to know where and what the amenity is without having to run into it every three seconds. Another tendency in console design is to create an uncluttered, clear work surface, with monitors and keyboards off the tabletop, height-adjusted desks that allow for convenient customization if you’re tired of standing all day, and cables hidden beneath the legs of consoles (because don’t you hate the sight of all of those cables coming out of your own TV at home?). All in all, the idea is to make technology be like magic—now you see it, now you don’t.

Growth in Technology

In the past, industries like the television industry utilized rack-mountable units that were bulky and offered limited variability in terms of design. This makes sense since technology of the past was bigger and boxier (think about the Walkman compared to the iPod or the record player compared to a tape player). But just as TV has evolved with technology, so has TV control room design, with console desks accommodating a variety of equipment sizes, monitors that are wider in length, touch-based technologies, and more. Console furniture related to TV technology has gotten smaller because the technology in general has.

Another thing that technology has enabled is for video/audio editing practices to be conducted almost anywhere. Gone are the days when you needed to have specific spaces to complete your work; now you can do it in a cubicle next to HR or even at home. This perk allows companies to save money on commercial rent space, because instead of having specific bays used for editing, they can condense down their space and have the editing team working alongside everyone else or even work from home, which makes the need to spend money on an additional space unnecessary.

command center furniture, with multi-operator configuration

Command Center Aesthetics Have to be Adaptable

Clearly, a lot of things have evolved with advancements in technology, and commander center aesthetics are no exception. Today’s control room desks and setups are more flexible, nimble, and attractive to the eye, made out of synthetic materials that make moving and customization a breeze. Less is more when it comes to console space, and this isn’t just because more things are in the cloud, but because it also makes employees more comfortable. Instead of being strapped to their chairs and immobile for hours at a time, command center workers can stand up at their desks and have more options than just one seated position for eight hours or more.

About Inracks Console Furniture

For nearly 13 years, Inracks has designed dynamic command center consoles for a variety of clients in a variety of industries. Learn more about our Enterprise and Edge lines of console furniture. Early on, Inracks set out to combine custom design and manufacturing with low-volume, low-cost solutions for companies. Inracks takes a three-pronged approach to the console center business, by using their years of experience in the business to know what the best designs and approaches are, putting together designs that are affordable for agencies, and finally incorporating customers’ opinions and judgment when it comes to putting together a command center design that fits their company’s needs. Let us design a solution for you here.

Inracks Control Room ConsolesCommand Center Consoles: Combining Ergonomics and IP

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