Why and how to set up a break room in a business.

3 June 2019

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Pourquoi aménager une salle de pause en entreprise ?

Employment laws may impose a minimum break time of 20 minutes for daily work of at least 6 hours. But going beyond this legislation, businesses are increasingly aware of the notion of well-being at work, especially as taking a break can increase productivity. Employees working in an open space environment or self-employed workers meeting in a co-working space all need an area where they can regroup, have fun and disconnect for a moment.

A relaxing space is a warm, inviting room where employees can share a moment together and relax on work premises. To create a cosy, zen-like atmosphere which encourages relaxation, break room projects should follow certain rules.

Our suggestions for setting up a good workplace break room

Relax chair from LAFUMA Mobilier

The size of the break room should be adjusted according to the number of employees. It should be big enough to not give a cluttered feeling, and instead offer a calming space where the air and natural light can circulate freely. A light-filled room is always more pleasant; the perfect solution would be to organise the relaxation area next to large bay windows looking out onto a garden or patio. In the absence of these, if arranging the space does not allow it, it would be better to choose room dividers with glazed swing doors or a glass roof to filter sunlight. Lighting is also important, and it is advisable to vary the light sources to diffuse a soft, cosy glow, rather than just install a single light on the ceiling.

Colours have an enormous influence on our psychological and emotional state. For the walls in a break room, it would be better to focus on light colours, such as pastel tones with a spice yellow or almond green which can also be calming. The various garish colours such as bright red or turquoise blue can appear aggressive, and the grey-white universe can look cold and boring. Instead of painting all the walls the same shade, play with a dynamic look by choosing a neutral tone on the majority of the area, and keep a more striking dominant colour on one wall surface. This originality does not affect harmony, on the contrary it creates a rhythm and allows you to define the relaxing areas more easily such as an area of couches to relax in, or an area set aside for eating, for example.

While interior decor inspires calmness, it should also create a sense of belonging, bringing employees together and forming a unified group. This is why it is essential to choose a theme which corresponds with the company’s ideas, such as a very contemporary design, a Scandinavian style, an artistic look, a retro industrial design or a very natural ambience with pure lines, for example. This choice will be personified with decorative items such as artwork, and also with table lamps, plants, vases etc. And for an additional touch of well-being, think about having an essential oil diffuser. In addition, books, magazines, and also games will be welcome to get away from it or reinforce team spirit.

Which furniture to choose for a break room?

Green ambience on a veranda equipped with LAFUMA Mobilier furniture

The relaxation area should suggest a different atmosphere from that of a professional office.Office furniture does not have a place here, instead choose designer furniture which inspires calmness and getting away from it all. A standing table or a set of table and chairs is important to promote exchanges between colleagues and for spending a moment with friends. Employees expect to spend a moment here with a coffee, or to be able to eat quietly. Here again, it is better to avoid dark colours and to choose woodwork such as light oak.

If the size of the place allows, another space could be set aside for quieter, more solitary moment, defined for example by a bookcase or open shelves which would act as a partition. In this space, everyone can relax privately, and even lie down and take a nap for example. Today, office workers spend many hours at work, in particular sitting in front of a screen, and it is recognised that a sedentary occupation is bad for the health. Therefore, changing posture is recommended during the day. Rather than classic armchairs and sofas in which one has the tendency to slouch, it is better to choose an ergonomic chair. LAFUMA Mobilier developed the concept of theindoor relaxing chair,based on medical knowledge, it is specially designed for relaxation. It allows the muscles and lumbar regions to relax, improves respiration and helps blood circulation. Supplied with a headrest, armrests and a height-adjustable integrated footrest, this ergonomic chair offers azero gravity position.

Also think about outdoor furnitureif the company has a little garden or patio for sunny days. Deckchairs,designer Pop-Up chairsorrelax chairs , which are both resistant to damage from the sun’s rays and bad weather are suitable for indoor or outdoor use.