With the evolution of the way we work and the increased need for collaborative effort to drive innovation and creativity, companies have realised the importance of having common spaces in the workplace. Hence, organisations are more willing to spend more during office renovation and for better office design and with more emphasis on having bigger and great user-appeal shared spaces. One of the common spaces that are so central to the overall design and the life of an office is none other than the office pantry.
A well-design office pantry brings invaluable benefits to both the employees and organisations, and here’s why:
Building of Better Work Relationship and Team Rapport
When there is more positive interaction at work such as friendly chit-chat over coffee in the pantry or having lunch together in the office kitchen, staff are able to build better friendship and make deeper connection with each other. Increased social interaction will not be just within the department but also across business unit as common spaces like pantries and rest lounges are the most likely places that people from different divisions would be able to encounter each other regularly.
Companies can also go a step further to promote camaraderie by hosting social events or team-building activities in the office. That’s where having some thoughtful office space planning will come in handy. For example, having the pantry area connected to meeting rooms separated by mobile partitions that allow the spaces to merge during corporate events and gatherings.
Taking Break at Work
Majority of working adults in Singapore spend around 8 to 10 hours daily at work. Working continuously for such long hours does not help to boost employee performance and instead has deleterious effect on their well-being. Social scientists recommend that we structure our work day in accordance to a “52-17” rule. That is, the work schedule should ideally be comprised of blocks of 52 minutes of focused work followed by 17 minutes of breaks.
Although in most cases, adopting or implementing such structured work schedule may not be practical, companies can still encourage their employees to take occasional breaks. One way that can be done is to have a well-designed office pantry that provides a cosy and welcoming space for staff to take a mental respite and rejuvenate.
Promoting Healthy Lifestyle and More
An office pantry or kitchenette should be well-equipped with basic kitchen appliance such as microwave or a toaster-oven that allow staff to reheat food or even cook a simple dish. If budget allows, companies should also consider stocking the pantry with health snacks and beverages to promote healthy eating. In so doing, organisation is not only promoting a healthier lifestyle of the employees but also helping them in saving time and money in various ways:
- They are able to reheat their lunch brought from home or even prepare some simple meals such as salads or sandwiches instead of relying on convenient fast food or unhealthy takeaway meals
- Bringing home-cooked food or dinner left-overs for lunch can also provide great saving for the staff in the long run.
- Providing a place to eat for the staff will reduce their daily stress by allowing them to skip the long queue and people-jostling during busy lunch hours
Optimise Space Utilization
Other than the obvious use of the office pantry as an eating place or coffee corner, it can act as a multi-purpose space:
- A co-working area for people who do not have a permanent work desk or for those who want an occasional change from their work cubicle.
- A meeting place for times when all the meeting rooms are booked
- A gathering area for making corporate announcement or catching up with the latest team’s updates
- An event venue to host social gatherings such as team building activities, charity fund-raising events and celebrative parties.
If you are convinced that a well-designed office pantry is well-worth the effort and investment, start planning for your office remodelling project today. Contact us for a friendly discussion for your renovation needs and we can also provide you with an obligation-free quotation.
Photo: Pexels / Helena Lopes