Increasing collaboration at work has become not just a trend but a goal for progressive companies that want to put a message across to their employees and clients that their work culture is not linear any longer but dynamic.
The workstation is no more rooted to one spot and the meeting rooms need not be closed spaces. Many companies are engaging designers to create spaces in the office that encourage collaboration, while meeting the needs of an active workforce. One such space is the lounge area. It is no longer just a waiting area for the visitors with a receptionist sitting behind a table. In fact, lounge areas facilitate the free flow of ideas as it simulates a relaxing environment. Such spaces can double as casual collaboration or recreational area.
So if you are planning to design your lounge area for co-working, here is a list of few things to keep in mind.
Gone are those days when a wall was merely painted in a single color. Office these days have a complete personality of their own, and plain walls are simply not inspirational for anyone. To keep everyone’s spirits up and build a collaborative working area, make those walls in the lounge area expressive. Your office aesthetics should vouch for your zippy and energetic teams.
Get the lounge walls covered with colorful images and inspiring quotes. Also, the latest in wall designing is complementary art. A set of frames on a large wall can not only break the monotony of a single-colored wall but also add a vibrant touch to the interiors. Looking at art and colorful pieces is pleasing and, at the same time, it is good for stimulating innovative thinking. And you never know when inspiration can strike.
Correct lighting in a workspace can improve mood and increase both alertness and productivity at work. Several scientific studies have proven that good lighting in a workplace has physical effects on workers, and also psychological effects.
Finding a balance between artificial lighting and natural light is key to avoid workers feeling strained or stressed. If your lounge area in the office is by the corner, glass walls would be the best, as you would make the most of natural light. Else think about getting lights that with brightness control.
Remember it is a lounge area and not a permanent working space. Along with some fixed furniture, add pieces of casual seating that can be moved around the room and by the end of the day can all be put back in their original space. In this way, a small group of two or a big of five can easily use the lounge area to discuss the next offsite or hold an impromptu meeting.
And of course, the furniture that is thoughtful, colorful, and most crucially ergonomic will promote collaborative working without letting your employees feel any strain. Choose furniture that offers not just comfort but that will keep their postures in the best shape. Addition of adjustable chairs (explore our range of office lounge chairs) and low and high tables can be a great addition to your office lounge.
With an agile workforce that is so much inclined to moving around an office space, the necessity of having enough plug points cannot be emphasized more. Most employees would not be comfortable using any working area that does not have enough plugging points for their laptops, phones and other gadgets that they use for work. So make sure that the lounge area has plug points not just fixed to the walls but even under the tables.
A lounge area is incomplete without a well-stocked vending machine. A quick snack could boost those brain cells faster than you think. And needless to say, who doesn’t want to grab a cup of tea or coffee while working. Instead of employees settling in the cafeteria, a lounge area with a vending machine is a good idea for collaborative workspaces.
Considering that 90% of employees spend a huge part of their day indoors, mostly in offices, they might as well enjoy the space that they are in. A beautifully designed lounge with all the right elements to reduce friction in getting the work done could go a long way in increasing collaboration and productivity in your office. So explore all the designs to transform your workplace to make it more employee-friendly.