The break room is one advantage that a hybrid work set-up has over a purely remote set-up. Now that some of us are already back in the office for hybrid work, the break room can be especially conducive to collaboration, communication, and brainstorming – if it’s set up properly.
Employees going back to the office may find that it’s no longer the same. The same goes for the staff who have changed after working from home for more than a year.
While more and more people are getting vaccinated, there are still fears and uncertainties when it comes to health and safety. After all, the vaccines might prevent you from dying or catching the worst of the symptoms, but it won’t stop you from contracting the virus – especially an enclosed space like the office.
Thus, it’s hardly surprising that people aren’t so keen on sitting in cubicles or congregating in break rooms these days.
As a result, virus-proofing break rooms are increasingly kosher. Companies that have embraced the hybrid work model are continuously developing different methods and measures to ensure their employees’ safety and security. Let’s take a look at a couple of examples.
Coffeemakers with Sensors
Most of us need a cup (or four) of coffee just to survive the day. For many, this caffeine fix helps them get through endless deadlines and tough assignments. With all the back-to-back meetings that come with hybrid work, the office break room can feel like a sanctuary.
Amidst the current pandemic, however, something as simple as getting your coffee can feel risky. Come on, getting coffee from the same coffee maker with people outside your household can be scary. Many of your colleagues probably feel the same too.
Fortunately, Nestlé came up with a no-touch coffee maker. It allows users to pick their caffeinated poison just by waving a finger over the menu. No need to press any button. Simply carry out the required motion and voilà, instant coffee!
Machines with QR Codes
Not a fan of motion sensors? Haven’t got the budget for a touch-free coffeemaker? No sweat. Lavazza developed an alternative that makes use of your mobile phone instead of a sensor.
So, how does it work? Basically, all you have to do is download a mobile app linked to the coffeemaker. This app lets users order lattes or cappuccinos with a QR code, No need to touch or even motion to the machine. Pretty cool, huh?
Choosing the right coffee maker might seem like a frivolous matter at this time, but it can mean a lot for employees who are dying to get their caffeine fix but are hesitant to go near the break rooms. If nothing else, it can give your staff back some measure of comfort and convenience from their pre-pandemic life.
The New Normal Workplace
There’s no doubt that remote work is here to stay. However, it’s not for everyone. There will still be a handful of companies that need to welcome their employees back to the office at some point. It helps to be prepared for such.
Doing so can involve more than just scheduling which employees get to stay at home and which ones have to report to the office. It may also include seemingly trivial matters (like a coffee machine) that turn out to have a bigger effect than we expect.
We’re all standing at the precipice of great change, within and without the workplace. Rethinking how we do things down to the last detail can help us prepare better for a digital future. Whether we opt for a completely remote workforce or a combination of such and office-based employees.
Remote Staff has been helping AU SMEs and entrepreneurs like you build your business with the help of skilled remote workers from the Philippines. Whether you need to transition to a fully remote setup or you just need a distributed team to supplement your office-based staff, we’ve got you covered.