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But because many employees fear that their bosses might think they’re ‘slacking off’ during lunchtime, it’s often difficult to get them to take a break and switch off for a while.
Enter the break room!
By creating a comfortable space for employees to unwind, not only do you encourage them to take breaks, but you also improve employee engagement and overall job satisfaction in the process.
Now, that doesn’t mean you have to install sleeping pods and start offering catered food to employees like Google does!
But you can – and should – jazz up your office break room and make it a happy place for them. To help you out, we’ve put together a list of all the essentials!
1. Toshiba 32-Inch HD Smart LED TV
In today’s day and age, a television won’t break the bank, and it can draw more employees to the break room. This smart TV from Toshiba can also be used for presentations and training sessions by connecting your smartphone or laptop to the screen.
2. Nespresso Vertuo Evolvo Coffee Machine with Aeroccino 3
It’s a given fact that most of the working world needs gallons of coffee to get through the day, and most workers value free coffee more than any other perk the company might offer. This Nespresso machine comes with the Aeroccino 3 milk frothier will show employees that you’re willing to invest in them and you’ll accumulate a large return as a result.
3. ‘The New Yorker’ Magazine Subscription
What’s the perfect way to switch off and let your mind rest? Reading a magazine with a nice cup of warm tea or coffee! By purchasing a magazine subscription, you’ll ensure that your employees will always have something to flick through during their downtime.
4. ‘Harry Potter’ Paperback Box Set
By adding a few classics into your breakroom library, you can cater to everyone’s needs. Create a quiet zone with a bookshelf and stack books – including all seven novels from the Harry Potter series – that can be read during lunchtime. Rest assured: the bookworms in your company will love it!
5. Premium Penguin Gluten-Free Snacks
While providing cooked meals isn’t essential, a good way to invest in your employees’ wellbeing is through a supply of healthy snacks. Stay safe with these gluten-free options that are suitable for all food intolerances!
6. Sofa Sack Memory Foam Beanless Bag Chair
The key to a good breakroom is comfort. And these comfy memory foam chairs are a great addition to a chill area in your break room and will ensure that more people are spending time away from their desk and in a different environment.
7. Koolatron CVF18 Retro-designed Thermoelectric Vending FridgeAmazon.com
While a vending machine isn’t essential, it’s a good contribution for a larger organisation. All you have to do is stock it with your employees’ favourite drinks. Plus, it will give your break room a groovier look!
8. Ecovita All-Natural Durable Compostable Cutlery
Shared cutlery can be disastrous in an office – people don’t wash them properly, they go missing, and there is never enough for everyone! To solve any problems, invest in these eco-friendly disposable knives, forks and spoons that can be thrown away after one use.
9. Primo Stainless-Steel Water Dispenser
If you expect people to eat and drink in the break room and not their desks, then a water dispenser is essential. This particular model allows for hot, cold and cool water use, and it has an interchangeable bottle feature.
10. Boraam Bloomington 6-Piece Dining Room Set
This casual dining table is a great addition to the break room furniture and is designed in such a way that it allows sitters to interact with each other while they eat their lunch.
11. Lancaster 3 in 1 Pool Billiard Slide Hockey Foosball Combo Arcade Game Table
If you want to take it up a notch, you can invest in this 3-in-1 arcade game table which will allow employees to engage in an activity that doesn’t stress them out and instead helps them unwind.
12. Kangaroo's Folding Wooden Chess Set
Another game to promote bonding among employees is chess. Although it’s a two-player game, you can set up challenges and tournaments to get more people involved.
13. VIZ-PRO Cork Notice Board
A cork notice board can be useful in any break room. People can add bulletins for car sharing, items they are selling or social clubs that they are forming, creating a space for employees to interact together.
14. Pyradecor Set of 4 Banksy Graffiti Girl with Red Balloon Canvas Panels
Staring at the same blank walls that surround your desk can be boring and demotivating. Turn the break room into a safe space by adding some interesting art and colours. This Banksy print is both inspirational and interesting to look at.
15. Ootori Massage Chair Recliner
If you want to spoil your employees, consider buying this professional full body massage chair. Just five minutes a day can relieve tension and untangle any muscles that have become stiff from sitting at a desk all day.
16. Mind Reader Breakroom Coffee Condiment Organiser
You can’t have a coffee machine without the condiments, can you? Ensure all the essentials are kept organised with this neat condiment stand, which features separate compartments for spoons, sugar and cream.
17. GoSports 6’x3’ Mid-size Table Tennis Game Set
A ping pong table is also a great way to keep employee motivation up. Let’s say they’ve endured a stressful meeting; they can pop into the break room and have a quick round of ping pong to destress and clear their head. They will then be able to return to work with a better mindset than before.
18. Toshiba EM131A5C-SS Microwave Oven
A clean microwave is the most essential part of any break room. If you don’t supply hot food, you’ll need to provide workers with a place to heat their lunch that they’ve brought from home.
19. Hamilton Beach 2-in-1 Countertop Oven and Long Slot Toaster
What’s better than a normal toaster? A toaster that doubles as an oven! This handy appliance can heat up pizza perfectly or make a hot cheesy sandwich in the oven.
20. Latent Epicure Battery Operated Salt and Pepper Grinder Set
Certain condiments and spices are a great addition to any break room. These fancy salt and pepper grinders can be left on the dining table, ready for anyone to use.
21. Decopom Natural Cork Coasters
While coasters aren’t necessary, they do add a homely feel to the break room, and they save tables from getting ruined. Depending on the vibe that you’re going for, these neutral cork coasters can be a great addition.
22. Marshall Kilburn II Portable Bluetooth Speaker
Whether you’re hosting celebratory drinks or a team-building exercise in the break room, background music is always a nice touch. The Marshal Bluetooth speaker is a perfect choice, as it’s easy to use and high quality.
23. Tylenol Extra Strength Caplets
As we spend so much time in the office, we usually end up suffering from a number of symptoms throughout the year (from headaches to bellyaches and backaches). Keeping a box of painkillers in the break room can be useful and will help employees overcome all those aches and pains.
24. Get The Games Out Top Backgammon Set
A backgammon set can help bring employees together through a little healthy competition. Like the chess set, you can arrange tournaments and teams to make lunch breaks a little more exciting.
25. Opps Mini Artificial Plants
Plants add a pop of colour to any environment, and these cute artificial plants are great for any break room. They come with inspirational quotes, and they’ll never wear old.
Which of these recommendations would you like to see in your office break room? Let us know in the comments section below.
This article is an updated version of an earlier article originally published on 8 October 2015.