If you want to lure your employees back to the office in the post-COVID world, you have to make your space more appealing than their homes. That means providing all the comforts of their houses-and then some- in your office break room: everything from spacious and stunning commercial cabinetry to relaxation spaces for those who want to unplug or even meditate (try doing that with a house full of kids).
While attracting employees to the office is of particular importance right now, a stocked office break room has always been key to work culture. One 2018 survey found[MA1] that 90% of employees said that a lunch break helps them feel refreshed and ready to get back to work. You can elevate their experience even more by providing a pleasant space for break time.
Another thing that companies like Google already know well is the importance of building office camaraderie and culture. This can be done by providing entertainment space — places for employees to hang out and have fun during their lunch break or even after work.
We know exactly what you need to turn your break room an enticing oasis for your workers.
1. The ultimate kitchen
A sink, microwave, and fridge do not a spectacular break room make. Think more Architectural Digest than Office Space. Install chic custom cabinetry with lots of space to hold dishes, glassware, and utensils — everything your employees might find at home. Make sure you have enough counter space for a state-of-the-art coffee maker that accommodates those who spent lockdown honing their barista skills. Free coffee is one of the most basic expectations your employees will have, how about a free snack bar? Or even a full-blown beer or bourbon bar. This will give employees an effortless way to gather after work, building the camaraderie that your team needs.
Don’t forget places for your employees to eat and gather either. Maybe it’s time to get elementary with it and install custom, long, communal tables that will facilitate socialization. Or, if your employees value solace, several round tables that can be used by groups or individuals.
2. Work and play options. Emphasis on the “play”
If you want your employees to take a break and recharge during the workday, you must give them something to do. How about a built-in bookshelf for an office library? Or a custom TV cabinet with a television equipped with Hulu and Netflix subscriptions? A board game shelf and ping pong table are good options, too.
Of course, any entertainment area should be paired with places to lounge. Don’t forget couches or bean bags.
3. Bring the outdoors in
Studies show that when employees spend time outside, their short-term memory improves, their concentration gets a boost, and their stress levels go down. Bring the outdoors in with house plants. Or for a low maintenance option, install big windows with plantaion shutters.
4. Space for relaxation
There are other ways to alleviate your employees’ stress. Consider setting aside an entire room for your workers to decompress. You could outfit it with a massage chair, a speaker for calming music, or an essential oil diffuser.
5. Don’t forget storage
All the extra amenities are nice, but you can’t ignore the basics. Storage is essential to a good break room. It’ll give employees a place to lock away their devices if they want to unplug or give them some peace of mind knowing their belongings are within sight and protected.
To get started on creating the perfect office break room, contact The Burkhart Company. This Louisville, Kentucky-based business has years of experience in making custom cabinetry, bars, built-in bookshelves, and media centers.