Author: Varsha Kempaiah

Why designing habitats that bring people together is important

Food plays a central role in creating a culture to engage people and provide fuel for big, innovative thinking and collaboration among employees.  Creating exceptional food experiences to the employees, not only make them happier, but also healthier, and more creative.

Spaces where people refuel, connect and collaborate

A space which creates a sense of belonging, and an intentionality of creating engaging spaces. Employees should feel like home; the heart of their workspace where one can visit at multiple times of the day to feel rejuvenated. Space for disruptive thinking – thought provoking.

Principles to imbibe as a designer

It’s the small things that matter. User experience should be the primary focus. We need to design experiences rather than designing spaces. Designers should understand the power of research and surveys – one size doesn’t fit all. The world needs creativity and it is our responsibility to create spaces which cater THINKING.

The key principles to designing food spaces are – USER EXPERIENCE , SENSE OF HOME, IGNITE IMAGINATION, RESPONSIBLE DESIGN.

The Scale

Planning food spaces for the Campus vs Teams. Small breakouts with food and hydration for teams without kitchens. These are at closer proximity to the work desks, where employees snack – food is always ready for on the go.. On the other hand larger cafeterias cater to the entire facility with central kitchen and food stores. Wayfinding, flow, queue rails, accessories play a large role for a successful design in these larger cafeterias.

Coffee Bars – what makes a great coffee bar experience

Coffee bars are more open, easy to use, and should provide a consistently great experience which is warm with operational efficiency. The layout typically has a front servery counter, back preparation counter and a self service station. The customization counter gives the user the personal touch/experience to get his beverage right.

The Aesthetics

Each space is tailor made with the kind of finishes, furniture and lighting used. The common elements which add value are technology integration, biophilia, acoustics and accessories.

The Outdoor Food Spaces

An office with outdoor seating, everyone agrees that it’s a perk and would contribute to an amazing workplace environment. Being outdoors, in between working hours for a break promotes wellness. Well shaded spaces, the right outdoor furniture and some plants is all it takes.

To Conclude

Good food spaces in a workplace improves company culture, enhances employee health, and increases employee productivity. Employees that are encouraged to eat together often develop stronger relationships. Employees that have access to healthier alternatives will tend to make better choices.