How to choose a site

December 01, 2023

Video Transcript

How to choose a Work Lounge site

Johanna Jorge: Hi, I'm Johanna. Workplace Services Manager. In this video, we'll go over criteria and things to consider when identifying a work lounge location. We'll also share some examples of planned work lounges and others that are up and running. Let's start with criteria and things you should keep in mind. We found that the best place to start is with under activated spaces in common areas where the economic setting can be improved for working. Minimum size of the space should be 2,000 square feet and up to 10,000 square feet. We don't recommend replacing desks or workspace with a work lounge as this can lead to code challenges as it relates to occupancy allocations. Now, let's take a look at some work lounge examples starting with the sandbox space on the fourth floor of Chelsea Market. The level of intervention can be classified as a medium effort in this space. This area of the floor is a major thoroughfare that connects three buildings and is anchored by a large MK with lounge furniture as shown in this slide, improving furniture choices and implementing intentional zoning will help drive effective utilization of these spaces and improve working outcomes for users.

Kristin Chiles: Hello, I'm Kristen, a project executive. I will share a space that demonstrates how we can use our applied learning from the work lounge resource hub to improve furniture solutions and increase activation. Like Joanna mentioned, improving the furniture postures and ergonomic settings can increase ease of use. First of all, we will look at the Magnolia Library in Austin, Texas. This space was designed as a destination that could be used as a micro kitchen, a quiet space to work or to gather as a team and even as a green room for the adjacent tech talk, the original furniture was more loungey and not necessarily work friendly. Our goal is better activation by doing a light lift of furniture to meet our work lounge, furniture guidelines, adding music and scent. We hope to attract more users to the space and make it more comfortable for working. This will pair nicely as a more secluded space as opposed to the mock coffee bar at the other end of the floor. As I said, Mont coffee bar sits on the opposite end of the 29th floor with an abundance of light, great views and a busy barista users often work on the sofa and at the existing cafe tables that said we evaluated postures and saw an opportunity to provide more seating that supports a variety of work styles while still offering lounge seating for a casual gathering. We are also adding rugs, table lamps, accessories and plants to soften the space. We hope to see higher occupancy and possibly longer durations for one stay. I will now pass it to Lauren.

Lauren Green: Hi, I'm Lauren and I'm the workplace programs, design partner, Kristen and Joanna just touched a little bit on how to activate underutilized spaces as work lounges. And I wanted to touch on a common question that we get regarding using existing food spaces as work lounges. Often we get asked if cafes or micro kitchens could be turned into a work lounge. I'll start with cafes first. The goal of all of our cafe spaces has been to design them in such a way that they're used and active all hours of the day. So naturally, cafes will be full and active at meal times, but a really great cafe design is used by users outside of meal times for working, meeting and collaborating. Many of our cafes are very successful in this and we found that those are the cafes that have a warm inviting atmosphere, have great artwork and, and warm lighting and have great music levels. We've also had cafes in our portfolio that are not used as often outside of meal periods and we have some recommendations on what to do with those spaces. However, at this time, our goal is to not turn those cafes into work lounges. Instead we'd love to hear from you to hear which cafes are underutilized and discuss together how to make recommendations and evaluate if they should receive funding for an uplift. And we could look at things like new furniture or booth seating, different music or different music levels, looking at the lighting, color, temperature and levels and artwork and accessories. So really what we recommend is not to turn it into a work lounge, but instead to look at how to create a warm and inviting atmosphere and encourage that all day use. This is so that we can keep the workplace, work lounge product defined at this time and keep the cafes separate. There might be a future where cafes and work lounges start to blur and blend and we start to create new space types that lean into both of those types of uses. But for right now, cafes should not be turned into work lounges. The micro kitchens are very similar to what I just described for cafes. However, we have a variety of different types of micro kitchens. So we have seen some success in turning very large micro kitchens into work lounges and or maybe the micro kitchen is, is adjacent to another lounge or a game room or another area that could easily be converted to a micro kitchen. One really great example is this one in Chicago. If you look at this floor plan, you'll see that it's about 3000 square feet and it's divided nicely into these zones which are really similar to the zones that we would use in a work lounge. If you see these photos here though, you'll notice that it doesn't have the warmth and the artwork and the accessories, the lighting, the table lamps, the area rugs, the ergonomic furniture that we would normally do for a work lounge. So this is a really prime candidate for a way that we could easily quickly scrappy, turn this into a work lounge by just coming in with some new FF&E. Hopefully that example is helpful. Hopefully this all starts to guide you on what we recommend and also don't recommend as to what to turn into a work lounge space. But when in doubt, just bring your ideas to the work lounge core team, bring your recommendations and we're more than happy to help guide you through. Thank you.

Thank you

Please reach out to workoungecoreteam@google.com if you are planning a Work Lounge

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