The Pros and Cons of Polished Concrete in Your Sydney Office

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Offices come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, with a wide array of design choices. When it comes to flooring, there are a number of options. A few flooring finishes stand out above the rest. It’s these floor coverings that most Sydney offices choose to install when designing and fitting out their space.

One of the most common floors, primarily due to the popularity of the industrial-style office, is polished concrete. At Niche Projects, we’ve worked with offices that sport polished concrete a number of times. We’re able to determine whether or not this finish will be well-suited for certain buildings or businesses.

Polished concrete comes with a range of benefits, along with a number of downsides. Every business should ensure that they consider both sides of the coin before choosing to utilise polished concrete. That’s exactly why we’ve put together a list of the good, the bad, and the ugly, of polished concrete.

The good

There’s no doubt that there are many benefits to using polishing concrete in the office. If there weren’t, it wouldn’t be so common!

It’s affordable

Polished concrete is quite an affordable option for flooring in the office. This is due to the fact that it’s not exactly expensive to grind. Once the concrete has been polished, it’s then sealed, usually with an epoxy coating. This entire process is much more affordable than say, installing a timber floor or tiling the space.

The main saving, however, comes from not needing to install any materials. The concrete slab or floor will already be there! This is great because it removes the need for purchasing and transporting additional materials, like timber, tiles, or carpet. Plenty of money is saved here. But keep in mind that some slabs or structures may be unsuitable for polished concrete floors.

It looks good in the right setting

Concrete can look excellent in the right kind of workplace. As we mentioned in the introduction, industrial-style spaces are very in right now. Polished concrete and hardwood floors are the two most common floor finishes in these types of offices. This is usually because the buildings themselves may have originally been warehouses or factories.

An industrial-style office fit-out looks great when done properly. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case… but when done right, a polished concrete floor fits seamlessly into the aesthetics of the rest of the office. If you’re looking to include a polished concrete floor in your office, you need to work with the experts.

It’s incredibly durable

We all know that concrete is extremely durable. When it comes to office flooring options, it’s the strongest by far. It’s incredibly hard to damage a polished concrete floor, no matter what you drop or spill on it! This makes it a great choice for offices that might be concerned about damage. It also means much less spent on repairs and maintenance over time, as opposed to carpet, timber, or laminate flooring.

It’s stable

Polished concrete is an incredibly stable surface. For example, chair legs and wheels won’t get caught on it. On the other hand, loose carpet tiles and uneven tiling can be a hazard. Employees may trip on bumps and loose corners, creating a health and safety issue in the workplace. Concrete won’t do this, and will remain even and stable.

Spills ain’t a problem

The epoxy coating that goes on most polished concrete floors makes the concrete absolutely impervious to virtually all spills and stains. This is really valuable in a busy office setting, where employees are eating and drinking throughout the day… and accidents do happen! If your office utilises carpet and carpet tiles, you (and your cleaning staff) probably deal with stains on a daily basis.

Concrete flooring is eco-friendly

Polished concrete floors are actually a very sustainable option. They won’t require the manufacturing of other materials, like timber floorboards, laminate, or vinyl. What’s more, the make-up of concrete is mostly natural materials. You’ll be saving on resources, as well as ensuring that the materials in your office are truly green.

The bad

It’s clear there’s a lot of good stuff that comes from using polished concrete. But there are some notable negatives that do need to be considered.

It doesn’t help in winter

Polished concrete can be enemy number one during winter. This is because concrete retains virtually no heat. That means you’ll probably be spending more on heating throughout the colder months. You can combat this by using rugs in your office, or inserting heating rods. The latter option is quite expensive though.

Poor acoustics

Concrete and other hard materials deflect sound, rather than absorb or muffle it. That means that a workplace with polished concrete floors will likely be louder than one with carpet. To combat this, make use of acoustic solutions like partitions, plants, and rugs. At Niche Projects, we’ll deliver exceptional acoustic solutions to your Sydney office fit-out.

They can be a little dangerous

It goes without saying that concrete is a hard surface. Therefore, it won’t cushion a fall as carpet, or carpet tiles would. That makes polished concrete a little more dangerous than some other flooring options. Nevertheless, with proper safety practices, that shouldn’t be an issue. Ensure that any spills are cleaned up thoroughly, and that any slippery spots are repaired. 

The same can be said for most floor coverings, really. That means that careful maintenance and cleaning are always crucial in a Sydney office space.

Sydney office design

Looking for a high-quality office design and fit-out company in Sydney? Look no further than Niche Projects. We’ve been working with businesses all over the city, to craft the perfect workspace. And when it comes to selecting a floor finish, we’ve got you covered. 
Get in touch with us today for more information.