Does your office has an area that people can go to to get away from their desks, maybe sit and eat a snack, have an impromptu meeting, or just a general area that is separate from the normal office area? Breakout spaces are an important part of any office space. Not only do breakout spaces help to reduce stress in the workplace, they give an additional area to be used to increase office productivity. We are going to review tips for designing your office breakout space and touch on why this area is significant for all office settings.
What is an office breakout space?
A breakout space is simple to define, it is an area within the office setting where employees can get away from their desks. The space doesn’t have a predetermined purpose, but is an area where employees can go for whatever reason they need. It could be to eat lunch, finish a conversation after a formal meeting, sit and unwind, and in general an area for innovation and collaboration.
Breakout spaces are not usually occupied for more than 30 to 45 minutes and their unstructured nature turns them into the ideal space for whoever occupies them. It has been found that 30% of employees are so stressed that it interferes with their work, making them less productive and impactful. A breakout space provides an area in your office where employees can go to relax and step away.
What should you consider when designing your office breakout space?
While breakout spaces are meant to have an undefined purpose, they need to be designed to set the right tone and fulfill your office and employees’ needs. You should consider the below when designing your office breakout space.
- Purpose: If you believe the space will be used for impromptu meetings and discussions, you likely want to include outlets for laptops and other devices. Some offices use this space for entertainment purposes, so you may want a TV or game tables. Understanding what you intend the breakout space to be used for, will help you to buy office furniture that is best suited for the space.
- Location: Do you need an area that is quiet and private or are you looking to create a space that allows for more interaction and noise? As with all things in your office design, location is key and will set the stage for how the space is used.
- Capacity: It is not uncommon for offices to have several different breakout spaces with different purposes. If you are looking to create a breakout space for small meetings and discussions, the size of the space does not need to be as large as a breakout space that you intend to have for all employees to eat and be in. After you have established the purpose of the breakout space; location and capacity will be much easier to determine.
Why do you need a breakout space in your office?
Breakout spaces are the most flexible areas in the office. They provide an area for people to feel comfortable and less formal, which encourages teamwork and invention. These spaces promote productivity by contributing to greater workplace concepts of responsiveness and adaptability. They also provide an escape from workplace stress and create a space for employees to go to relax and recharge.
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