Unhappy workers are imploring their employers to create office breakout spaces so they can eat lunch away from their desks and reset for the afternoon, according to new research.
A survey of 1,012 UK office workers’ carried out by interiors retailer, Furniture123.co.uk, revealed that 56% of Brits don’t have anywhere to eat lunch in their office, and 1 in 3 don’t have any form of breakout space to enable them to get away from their desk.
As a result of this, 34% of employees say they resort to eating lunch at their desk, which they feel is having a detrimental effect on morale and productivity.
69% of those surveyed feel they work less productively as a result of not taking a break away from their desk over lunch, and almost half (47%) believe they would work more efficiently in the afternoons if they took a full hour for lunch.
The research also revealed that 46% said they would like to get out of the office for a walk during their lunch break, but almost half of these (47%) felt they had nowhere to go or didn’t like the local area.
In addition, 35% of UK workers take their lunch outside to eat when the weather is nice and a fifth (21%) even confess to running over their allocated lunch break.
When asked what breakout features they would like to see in the office, a designated lunch area topped the list (76%), followed by sofas (70%) and bean bags (62%).
Completing the top 5 were a garden or terrace (59%) and a ping pong table (52%).
Mark Kelly, marketing manager at Furniture123.co.uk, says: “Happy workers are more productive. This sentiment has been proven time and time again, and it’s one of the many reasons why it’s so important to keep employees on side. Providing staff with somewhere to eat lunch is an office essential, and the simple act of getting away from the desk and taking a break, even for ten minutes, enables workers to push the reset button and come back to work with a clearer head and renewed focus.
“All employers should consider investing in breakout spaces to aid productivity. Whether creating a cosy corner with simple bean bags or commissioning a full breakout room with all the trimmings, the increased staff productivity will ultimately bring in more revenue to the business and the investment will pay for itself.”