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Article by Marie Bower, Scanomat UK
What does coffee mean to you? Is it what wakes you up in the morning? Is it a moment of calm in a local independent coffee shop on a Saturday? Or maybe a moment away from your desk to catch up with colleagues after going back to the office?
Coffee brings people together and when it comes to the workplace we shouldn't underestimate the role that it can play in helping to nurture company culture. Before the pandemic, teams were able to gather around a table and ponder ideas over a cup of coffee. Now, with many adopting a hybrid approach to working, that time together is so important to help rebuild relationships.
There’s no question that company culture has taken a hit during the pandemic. Peldon Rose’s Office of the Future report found that 69% of people felt that sharing vision and purpose with their colleagues was easier pre-lockdown. Many have missed being able to interact face-to-face and bounce ideas off each other. While this is still possible virtually, it can be hard to drive energy and enthusiasm through a screen.
So where does coffee come into it? With businesses now gradually returning to the workplace, they have an opportunity to create ‘moments’ between employees within certain spaces such as the breakout areas. But, for these ‘moments’ to happen, companies must first encourage people back into the office.
We’ve all become accustomed to the comforts that are found when working from home, with many investing in technology and furniture to create the optimum working environment. Now businesses need to offer employees a workspace that exceeds the benefits of working from home. These workplaces need to be meaningful and drive positive experiences, they need to offer an attraction and benefit to the employee. The introduction of smart technology such as TopBrewer from Scanomat can help elevate the employee experience through the creation of a ‘coffee culture’ where employees can get fuel for their day with a premium coffee, in a relaxed environment.
Breakout spaces have become much more important over the past year, offering an alternative working environment away from the formality of traditional office space. They can be designed to create a coffee shop-style setting with a range of seating that encourages moments away from a desk, as well as create a buzz of chatter amongst employees. For creative businesses, studies have shown that this level of background noise encourages employees to think more creatively and with the right level of disruptions, our minds are encouraged to think abstractly. It is within these spaces that technology such as touchless coffee points can act as a focal point and encourage employees to meet and collaborate on projects, or simply catch up with work friends. Breakout spaces also help to foster casual interactions and offer opportunities to connect with people who we may not work directly alongside.
Smart technology such as TopBrewer within the workplace also helps to minimise our touchpoints, something that we are all more aware of than ever. Through the use of an app, employees can select their hot drink without having to physically touch any surfaces. Furthermore, businesses can use this technology to track consumption trends within the organisation as well as alert any maintenance teams with issues and allow for a remote solution.
Adding features such as quality coffee have been shown to boost the employee experience with 75% of workers agreeing that a premium coffee experience within the workplace suggests that employers care about the wellbeing of their teams.
As organisations navigate the return to the workplace, it is clear that their spaces must now offer more benefits and opportunities than ever before. They must be a destination with superior perks and a wide range of spaces that brings teams together, whether to boost wellbeing or reignite the cultural flame.