Things to Consider When Creating an Office Lounge
Whether they’re being used for a little socialization and relaxation or productive collaboration, office lounges are very valuable places to have around the office. But with hybrid work becoming more common, office lounges have become more important than ever. Not only is it important to have spaces that help foster company culture, but collaborating is now often a key reason why people come into the office. But creating a lounge takes some planning to make sure it’s as beneficial as possible.
Make it Comfortable
Being comfortable doesn’t necessarily mean being unproductive or unprofessional. Office lounges are meant to have an inviting atmosphere, with sofas and chairs that remind people of what they might have in their living room at home. Maybe even a footrest. Because of their more relaxed and casual vibe, many companies like to have fun with their lounge areas and add things like bean bag seating or other fun touches, like toys and board games, for people to enjoy. Even if the overall style for your office is more formal and traditional, lounge areas can still be comfortable and inviting while still fitting in with your style of decor. Think neutral colors and upholstery with a sophisticated look, such as leather.
Make it Functional
While lounges can be informal and good for casual socialization, don’t forget that they need to be functional spaces where people can collaborate and work. What types of accessories would be most helpful for people to have? Would a whiteboard come in handy during brainstorming sessions? Should the area include support for video conferencing? Will people have access to power outlets? Another idea is to look for furniture with integrated support for technology, like built-in charging stations so that people can easily charge their devices when they need to.
Office lounges can be very versatile, multi-functional spaces and it’s good for lounges to be designed in a way that makes it easy for them to be adjusted based on what individuals or groups need. For example, lightweight furniture in general is excellent for lounge areas so that people can rearrange seating as people join a discussion. Or perhaps you may want to keep a stack of chairs nearby that would make it easy for people to grab if a group needs some extra seating.
Office lounges can work well in both open and enclosed spaces. But when you’re thinking about where to create your lounge areas, try to make sure that noise from meetings and conversations won’t be a distraction to others working nearby. Enclosed spaces, like privacy pods, are a good way to keep noise down. But if that’s not an option, try placing lounges in areas away from workstations or add acoustic control solutions around the office to make sure noise doesn’t become a problem.
Don’t Forget Storage
Storage is something that often goes overlooked in office lounges. But if you want to keep some extra things around the lounge that people may need, such as spare power cables, batteries, or whiteboard markers and erasers, having a storage solution will help prevent the space from looking cluttered. Bookcases and cabinets are great for many lounges, but you could look for furniture that offers built-in storage.
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