What is an office touchdown area?
Ideas of what makes the perfect office set-up are changing fast, with the activity-based working model slowly starting to take over more regulated working spaces. Modern day office design is all about enhancing flexibility, giving staff complete control over how and where they work by providing them with different “zones”. Each zone has a specific purpose in mind, and the touchdown area is one of the more informal places for employees to complete short, relaxed tasks. This could be for debriefs, quick catch ups with colleagues, or for responding to an email. So, how can you go about incorporating an office touchdown area into your office? Read on to find out.
Comfortable office seating
An informal zone should be as comfortable as possible, allowing staff to take a quiet minute away from their desk when needed. Bringing home comforts into the office puts people at ease, so it should be your goal to ensure that your touchdown space looks inviting. Provide a range of cosy office furniture for your employees to sink back into, from stylish sofas and armchairs to shared work benches that support collaborative efforts; we applied this same mentality to Tote’s redesign. Customise your space to match your desired aesthetic with throws and cushions, adding your own finishing touches to effortlessly blend your touchdown area with the rest of your office design. You could also add in a coffee table or two, so that staff can also enjoy a re-energising cuppa whilst putting their feet up.
Creating a relaxed atmosphere
Think of a place that evokes feelings of peace, and this should give you some inspiration for your next office redesign. A touchdown area should be centralised around this idea, creating a calming atmosphere that allows staff to momentarily disconnect from the real world. When creating a practical yet light-hearted environment for Rentalcars.com, Sunlight House, we wanted employees to be able to transport themselves into a relaxing orchard, using wood and earthy greens to bring an essence of biophilia into the office. Situated to the side, staff can also recline back in a beach chair to help them visualise blue skies and rolling waves.
An office touchdown area should be fitted with appropriate lighting, as although it’s important to put staff at ease with a warm glow, you’ll also want to make sure that they have enough to see their work. Whether you choose to go for hanging light bulbs for an urban effect, bright spotlights or even some funky multicoloured LED strip lights, choose an option that not only suits your office aesthetic, but one that won’t lead to squinting at screens.
When paying a visit to the touchdown area, staff may also bring bags, stationary or laptop cables along with them, which are all potential trip hazards. The solution here is to provide a variety of office storage spaces throughout your working environment, so that staff will be able to leave all of their belongings in a safe and organised space. This way, staff will be able to bring an array of equipment with them that will support their work without worrying about cluttering up the place. We also recommend maximising space in your office in general. This means your staff will feel free to move around a spacious office.
For those that want to have a natter with their employees, or staff that need to have a quiet minute to concentrate on a particular task, it’s essential that your touchdown area is designed with privacy in mind. Hustle and bustle is inevitable in any office, but you can keep the volume levels to a minimum with partitions or soundproof panels that dampen soundwaves. You can check out one of our previous articles for more advice on office design that can help to reduce noise levels, so that your staff can remain productive regardless of where they choose to work.
If you’ve been inspired by our ideas on how to design a touchdown area for your office, get in contact with our team of experts today to make your vision a reality. From initial office planning to post-project support, we can help you transform your workplace to get the best out of your business.