What Are Movable Work Pods?

Today’s open office concepts often create more productivity issues than they solve. One study found that open office concepts led to more text messages, more emails and less interaction and collaboration between coworkers. If you still want an open office concept, you can use movable office Pods to increase productivity while keeping the floor plan you have in mind.

Movable Office Pods

Movable office Pods from SnapCab® are standalone quiet spaces on wheels. They come in a variety of sizes, and you can use them as study areas, phone booths, meeting spaces and more. Additional features of these Pods include:

  • Customization: You can personalize the Pods to fit your office’s design.
  • Easy relocation: Any time you want to create a new layout, you simply wheel the Pods into place.
  • Sound absorption: Open offices include many distractions such as phone calls, employee conversations and background noise. Sound-absorbing Pods from SnapCab can fix that issue.
  • Quick updates: When you update your office or change the decor, you can change your Pod too. Simply switch out the exterior wall panels with a new color or image.

With our Pods, you’ll get all the benefits of open space mixed with the option for privacy. Employees who find an open office concept distracting can work in a Pod, make a phone call or even meet with clients or other co-workers in a quiet space. Your employees’ productivity can soar again with a Pod that lets them get the quiet space they need to work efficiently.

Tips on How to Use Office Pods

There are a variety of ways to make an office feel like home using Pods. Try following these tips on how to use office Pods to create a peaceful and more productive space:

  • Include communal quiet areas: The Pod doesn’t have to be the only quiet space in the office. You can design a section of the office to operate as a quiet area for employees who need it. Adding Pods to that space gives employees more options for privacy.
  • Incorporate seamless furniture: Today’s office spaces use a variety of design styles to make employees feel like they’re at home. With customized Pods, you can add furniture and other decor that makes the office more inviting and creates a seamless look.
  • Remember study areas: Offices aren’t the only spaces that can use Pods. Colleges and libraries can install Pods as study areas for students needing a quiet place, and if it’s appropriate for the kind of work you do, you can include these areas as well.
  • Provide conference rooms: Some meetings require a private space, like performance evaluations and important conference calls. A Pod from SnapCab is the perfect place to hold a private meeting.

Benefits of Movable Office Pods

When you install our movable office Pods, you can start to reap the benefits of them right away. From easy installation and mobility to increased privacy and productivity, Pods will help you upgrade your open office space to one that makes people feel more comfortable. Request more information about our movable office Pods and how they can make your office feel like home.

SnapCab — Inside the Blueprint

At SnapCab®, we have an amazing variety of products that help businesses across North America. With our innovative designs and dedication to our customers, we know that we can make a difference in your office spaces.

To help you get to know our products, we’re here to give an inside look at our SnapCab® Pods. Offices with open floor plans can struggle. From employees having trouble concentrating and finding privacy to a lack of productivity with too many distractions around the office.

Our Pods are the solution. They will give your employees a quiet place to get their work done, whether they are working alone or with others. Here’s your inside look at this fantastic product.

Guided by Innovation

SnapCab got its start because of our focus on innovation with elevator paneling systems. Our systems cut down the time to install new elevator interiors from several days to just one. These simple systems are easy to install, with only a few tools necessary.

We used that same dedication to innovation to develop our Pods. These small, mobile offices are like nothing else of their kind. They are on wheels, so you can rearrange them in your space as you need to get the most out of your office.

We always keep our customers and other relationships in mind when developing and improving our products. Our goal is to never stop improving our products because we know we can continue to update the design.

Innovation Matched with Simplification

The main benefit of all our products, besides their high quality, is the simplicity in their design and installation. Even after they are installed, their various design and customization options let you find the perfect Pods for your office space.

Each Pod offers optional seating and desk space. You can select different wall panel colors and easily hang up other items inside the Pods. The possibilities are endless with personalizing your Pod.

The Pods also have excellent sound-canceling features. There are sound-absorbing panels on the ceiling and a seal on the doors to further block sounds from coming in or going out. Whether you work better in a quiet environment or need privacy for phone calls or meetings, the Pods are perfect places to go.

The Pod Production Process

We have a streamlined process to produce our amazing Pods. We build them in a few steps and quickly get them ready to ship out.

First, the panels of the Pods get pressed with a laminate to achieve the strength they need to block noise. After pressing, we cut the panels to size and put them through a shaping and drilling machine to ensure they meet exact measurements.

Finally, we hinge the glass door and assemble the Pod. Our expert wrapping and packaging ensure the Pod is safe during transport, and then it’s on its way to your business. When it arrives, you only need to complete the simple assembly, plug it in, and then it’s ready for use.

If you think our Pods will make your office space a more productive and efficient place, check out our different Pod options today to get started.

Video Transcript

Where does innovation come from?

More often than not, it usually stems from a need or a problem that requires a solution.

This is what inspires the engineers, technicians and construction personal at SnapCab.

Having conquered the worlds of elevator interiors and multimedia walls, they’ve set their sights on the open workspace environment where privacy is hard to come by.

And the SnapCab pod can provide a solution.

And as much as the folks at SnapCab pride themselves on innovation, it might be their focus on simplification that sets them apart from the competition.

Hi, I’m Glenn Bostock, CEO and founder of SnapCab.

In 1983, we started a woodworking shop in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Myself and some other college buddies rented a barn, and we started building custom cabinet work.

Pretty soon, we outgrew the barn and we came up with a systematic way to remodel elevators.

It reduced the installation time for elevator mechanics from four days down to one day.

 In 2016, we were approached by a major open office company looking for a way to bring privacy into their open office.

They were looking at our elevator cabs and realized - hey, you guys very nearly have a phone booth here.

If only you could just panel the outside and put some doors on these things.

Apparently, there’s a privacy crisis, with all of these open offices.

People can’t think or focus.

They need small conference rooms where they can collaborate and have private conversations.

 It took one year to develop a prototype.

We went to market and we actually won an award at NeoCon for best of show in that category.

Alright, here’s where the action happens, out on the factory floor.

This is also where I keep my office.

But, before this turns into a pod, a lot of work has to happen to it.

And we’re going to take you through the whole manufacturing process.

And here we have Kyle, my production manager, and he’s going to take you around.

Kyle –

Thanks Glenn.

I’ll show you how to make the pod.

Welcome to the first stage of pod manufacturing.

Panel production.

What we do first, is we place large sheets of flake into our glue and press machine, and press them with any type of laminate that you might see on the outside of a pod.

Once the panels are pressed, they get cut to size on the beam saw.

Once the panels are cut to size, they’re then placed through the shaping and drilling machine.

 So, once the panels are completed, then the glass door is hinged, and brought to the final assembly cell – where the pod is fully assembled.

Once the pod is finished assembly, it’s then brought over to the packaging cell where it’s wrapped and packed.

You thought that orbital wrapper was cool, well now check out our robo-wrapper, ‘Pac-man.’

My favorite thing is how we actually build a pod.

It has a panel on the outside and one on the inside.

You can hang anything you want, you can put anything in there.

You can personalize it and customize it as much as you want.

We have people installing monitors, projectors, anything.

The pod is the only pod in the industry that actually has casters and wheels.

It makes it super easy for you to just put it in place and start using it.

My name is Corinna Mossberg, I’m the president of SnapCab.

 I used to work for one of the major elevator companies where SnapCab was a fantastic supplier.

We’re always promoting being kind, being authentic, being useful and creating value for others – whether it be customers, employees, or any other stakeholders.

The executives at BrandStar, the production company behind inside the blueprint, were so blown away by the pods – they ordered one for themselves.

Corinna, nice to see you again.

Nice to see you again.

Hey, Aaron.

Nice to see you again.

Hey, as promised, here is your SnapCab Pod.

But this is not what you ordered.

Okay.

This is SnapCab Pod 2.0.

This has all kinds of features, that are just coming out on the market now.

Nice, well you know it, I want to dedicate this pod to one of my special producers.

I’m going to have her come down and take a look at it.

Nice.

Can you come down for a second? I want to show you something.

Sure, I’ll be right down. Okay.

I know you’ve been working really, really hard – and I know sometimes you need some privacy with your own phone calls and stuff, so we got you this great new SnapCab that is going to be dedicated to you.

For me?

So, it’s going to be Brittany’s pod.

Oh my God, that’s incredible.

Come in, let’s check it out.

Incredible, oh my goodness.

That’s where Scooby’s been.

This is amazing.

It’s nice right?

It’s really nice.

This pod has corning glass on the whiteboard.

Also, there’s acoustic sound absorbing panels.

Check out this door.

This has a triple seal that really blocks the sound.

 So, what gets me up in the morning is really working with the team that I work with.

 We have people that love working together, collaborating, to use our God-given talents to do something useful to benefit other people.

And I feel like my time is really well spent here at SnapCab.

For more information about the SnapCab pod, please visit us at SnapCab.com.

expensive and dependent on your local talent.

With Gorilla Glass, we haven’t even scratched the surface of possibilities.

Which Pod Setup Completes Your Office Design?

Office furniture has undergone a revolution.

Gone are the days of stationary, rectangular desks squeezed inside boxy cubicles. You can wave goodbye to bulky metal file cabinets shoved into corners surrounded by flat fluorescent lights. And you can forget those traditional meeting rooms with long tables and uncomfortable chairs that are somehow always booked — yet for gatherings of two to three people.

Internal office booths and acoustic Pods have changed the game, shifting the way people think about and use space while at work. That rethinking means workers are demanding more flexibility, more mobility and more creativity from office furniture itself, plus its arrangement.

SnapCab® Pods fit right into this movement. Our unique paneling systems and sleek, moveable modules allow you to configure each of the three sizes to your space’s exact needs.

Not sure what those needs may be — and therefore which configuration functions best? We’ve got a few Pod setup suggestions below, plus the atmosphere and workplace behaviors each promotes.

1. Perimeter or Against-the-Wall Pods

One of the most popular and intuitive places we see Pods set up is around the edge of the office.

popular design

Those looking to maximize the innate nature of Pods as stand-alone office privacy booths often do so, through a perimeter configuration. Pods sit out of central locations, removed from louder areas and work spots that contain added distractions like chatty co-workers, break rooms or noisy departmental areas.

In open-concept offices, these noises can be especially burdensome. Pods pushed against office perimeters lend a break when your employees need it most. This very positioning says, “I’m in here to focus,” with Pods separated from the rest of the furniture pack in a notably inconspicuous area.

  • Pod S pushed against the perimeter provides an individual retreat for those needing a break from any surrounding hustle and bustle. An entire wall of Pods S ensures these same individual workstations are available if anyone needs them.
  • Pod M fits two to four people and can provide the same respite for a small group of co-workers working together on a project and in need of an acoustic, sound-absorbing space.
  • Pod L upgrades the collaborative affordances of Pod M. Groups of three to six can comfortably work inside or conduct meetings that require attention and focus, removed from the rest of the office.

2. Strategic and Acoustic Pod Partitions

The portability and innate privacy Pods make them ideal for a second setup idea, one as practical as it is popular in open-concept offices: partitions.

Given their modular build and easy-to-move frames, it’s easy to see why. A handful of Pods side by side, one after the other, creates a wall-like barrier that can afford workspaces several cost-effective spatial arrangements:

  • Designates departments — In the trendy open or semi-open floor plans of today, office partitions are a must. They reduce sound drift, provide much-needed privacy and elevate the layout of the entire room, often at a fraction of the cost of building walls or refurbishing.
  • Denotes activity-based workstations — Activity-based workstations (ABW) provide an alternative to assigned desks in your office layout. Rather than every employee receiving an immovable desk in a static department or area, an ABW design allows them to pick where they want to work that day — or that hour — based on their immediate tasks. ABW gives flexibility and autonomy back to workers and has been shown to positively influence employee mood, as well as physical, social and emotional well-being while at work. SnapCab Pods are the perfect partitions to separate and designate your office’s ABWs.
  • Creates privacy screens and barriers — One side of partition Pods may contain employee workstations, while on the other side is a lounge area outfitted with comfortable couches and a coffee bar. The following row of Pod partitions could help separate sales and IT — two different departments with varying spatial needs, worker preferences, furniture and even technological outfitting. Pods are a natural way to divide these spaces without isolating them.

Privacy pods as partitions for any of the above purposes balance collaboration with privacy, which is something many offices today still struggle with when attempting to give employees the versatile seating and layout options they crave. Too little spatial structuring can create confusion, disorganization and hinder productivity. Linear partition Pods prevent this.

3. L-Arranged Office Furniture Pods

More inventive than traditional linear rows, L-arranged office Pods offer a significant advantage by creating a “huddle-like” atmosphere. The half-open, half-closed space creates an inviting meeting area or go-to collaborative spot with easy access. Participants sit facing one another within the L-huddle the Pods create, an arrangement great for innovative group sessions, brainstorming and intimate team-oriented or departmental projects.

Even individuals working inside the Pods remain connected to their surroundings. The Pods’ tempered glass door provides a clear view of the outside, yet its interior still holds all the acoustic, sound-absorbing Pod features needed in a busy office.

What’s more, L-arrayed Pods work great within smaller offices and workspaces. You can maximize your available square footage without burdening or overcrowding the space — or, worse, filling it with beautiful furniture that doesn’t add any functionality for your employees, or vice versa.

The L-arrangement truly facilitates group problem-solving and identity, as well as inter-office connectivity. You can mix and match the three Pod sizes to create the ideal, eclectic L or align identical booths for a more cohesive look. The choice is up to you — the results of this Pod arrangement can quickly influence your entire work-culture philosophy.

l configuration

  • Productivity — A productive workplace tends to be a more positive one. A more positive workplace, in turn, retains more employees and draws in tomorrow’s talent.
  • ConnectionWork relationships are instrumental to mental and physical health. Higher employee rankings regarding their satisfaction with workplace colleagues also correlate with higher happiness levels, as well as reduced workplace stress and anxiety.
  • Engagement — Employees report more engagement with their job as well as with their employer’s brand and mission when they feel interpersonally connected and supported.
  • Sociability — Workplaces need to be productive. But employees can’t be “on” all hours of the day. A healthy work culture should recognize the need for sociability and curate it through layout hacks — exactly what L-arranged portable Pods can do.

4. Centrally Arranged Sound-Absorbing Office Pods

Centrally arranged Pods are the yin to perimeter Pods’ yang. Instead of lining the exterior of rooms, departments or the entire floorplan with acoustic office Pods, you place those Pods right in the middle.

Centrally located Pods strike the right balance between privacy and casualness. They keep the integrity of an open-floor plan alive, yet help absorb noises and nuisances interrupting productive work.

There are several additional benefits to centrally arranged Pods, as well as a range of functions this configuration allows. Plus, it can provide these functions simultaneously — some other arrangement types may not be able to. All at once, central internal office Pods can create:

  • A breakout space — Not quite a full-fledged conference room and not quite a stuffy, cramped meeting room, the breakout space is a popular choice for offices with a startup-like buzz and the need for impromptu employee gatherings. That energy effortlessly pools into these ultra-collaborative rooms you can build from either a Pod M or Pod L. Because of their central positioning, they’re directly in sight and top of mind for employees who need to grab a spot for the group, quickly and informally.
  • Room partitions — Centrally arranged acoustic office Pods break up the sprawl of an open floor plan. They visually enhance its expanse while divvying up departments, desks or activity-based workstations. Central Pods that act as room partitions also help reduce free-floating noise from disrupting your workers. Because as we all know, all it takes is for one co-worker discussing last night’s game to pull us away from our work.
  • Office phone Pods — Placing a Pod S and Pod M in the middle of a room gives employees a secure, private place to dip into for phone calls, video conferences or to take care of personal matters. They won’t distract others and can do so quickly and conveniently in the quiet, contained space.

5. Pod Clusters

Clusters, or strategic groupings of Pods, provide yet another idea to inspire the ways to set up your office Pods.

In grouping your Pods, you mirror the strategy behind activity-based workstations (ABW). These task-based office layouts prioritize individuals accomplishing their work where they best see fit — therefore catalyzing what they get done in a day.

Offices outfitted with an ABW layout tend to work best with equally flexible and adaptive office furniture. That means moving away from heavy, stationary desks and into more creative office seating and meeting solutions — exactly what Pods S, M and L afford.

By extension, Pod clusters free groups of employees as well as individuals to work privately where and when they like. Workers can arrange and rearrange multiple Pods to face different directions on a convenience or preferential basis. Since they’re free-standing and reconfigurable, you aren’t committed to one look with one set of booths. Add one or two, or take one or two away.

  • Aesthetically, Pod clusters create a cozy atmosphere like eclectic arrangements of office furniture. They help break the office layout mold of linear rows of identical furniture, as listless as it is uninspiring. Pod clusters also align with the resimercial design trend that’s exploded in popularity over the past few years, where personalized, homey pops and touches brighten and enliven a workspace. Think patterned wall panels, colorful furniture, throw pillows and unique light fixtures, which SnapCab can fabricate Pod panels to match.
  • Functionally, Pod clusters promote greater creativity, flexibility and connectivity in the workplace. They encourage interaction and mobility, handing choice back to employees on which furniture best complements their work styles. The closeness of the clusters assures individuals remain connected to their surroundings, but can still have a laser-focused work spot, while the overall cluster structure supports groups breaking apart and coming back together to accomplish a project.

6. Private Office Alternatives

Due to its size, SnapCab’s Pod L can complete another vital office layout feature: private offices.

With office space at a premium these days, many companies — particularly startups — find it difficult to rent the square footage they need with the budget they have. It’s an understandable and relatively common problem in today’s commercial real estate across the nation’s largest markets.

internal quiet places

Sound-absorbing, internal quiet space Pods provide the solution. If renting a space with pre-set offices is too expensive, Pods provide a cost-effective alternative. A Pod L is large enough to accommodate the staple furniture and necessities of an office — the desk, chairs, lights and even small filing cabinets or storage.

Across various office spaces and floor-plan types, an internal office Pod can help create the following:

  • A heightened sense of professionalism and legitimacy when new clients visit
  • A formal, assigned desk space for upper management and executive personnel
  • An official, enclosed but unassigned desk space option for employees to use
  • A more secure place for senior executives and upper management to conduct private, higher-level tasks and conversations
  • The maximization of office square footage, particularly for open-concept layouts
  • More productivity and employee task efficiency, as enclosed offices allow for the utmost privacy and concentration to take place

7. Lone Privacy Pods

Single Pods dispersed across the office lend a final layout option, bringing these versatile booths to life in your space.

Pods offer respite away from the noise, distractions and disturbances that fill the workday. While a few work breaks are inevitable — and even healthy — too many disrupt our momentum and can cause us to produce inferior or even erroneous work.

Solo activities that require hyper focus and attention for most — such as writing reports, creating presentations, drafting pitches, designing a new logo, writing new code or sending important emails — need spaces that support these functions, but in a holistic manner.

It’s not enough to be secluded. True productivity in the workplace also requires maximum levels of quiet, proper lighting, comfortable seating and visual-stimuli reduction all coming together to unlock full worker efficiency. Not every piece of office furniture can do this, plus provide productivity-boosting features like plug-and-play technology and motion-activated lights.

You can disperse single S, M or L Pods into remote office corners, against the walls or in dedicated, centralized floor spots. Create a usage policy or communicate these privacy Pods are for dedicated solo work, the ideal sound-absorbing spaces for high productivity. Sitting in one signals your commitment to your task at hand. Others will know to reach out or check back in with you later, maintaining worker harmony and ensuring you are meeting everyone’s privacy needs.

Pod Office Booths Are the Sound-Absorbing, Privacy-Boosting Benefit to Your Office Layout

The perfect arrangement is only a few clicks away. Explore our gallery of SnapCab Pods in a range of customizations and configurations, then book a free design consultation to bring your portable privacy Pod ideas to life.

Or, you can reach out directly to one of our design representatives online or at 888-766-7834. Let’s find the perfect Pod configuration for you.

Get in Touch

Five Uses for an Office Pod That Doesn’t Include Meetings

They’re modern. They’re mobile. And, yes, they’re multi-functional. SnapCab’s® lineup of Pods are the triple threat when it comes to workplace spatial solutions — for more reasons than meet the eye.

From their caster-mounted rolling base and their personalized panels to their plug-and-play electronic outfitting, we’ve fabricated our modular Pods to enhance nearly any professional environment. Plus, as office pods become more and more prevalent in today’s trending workplace designs, so too must their versatility for that popularity to be matched by performance.

While tried-and-true as a meeting-room solution for limited-space offices and open floor plans, Pods can be used for and help encourage so much more. Let’s explore some of these out-of-the-box uses for modular Pods below, getting you inspired along the way.

 

1. To Get Into the Flow State

A term from positive psychology, “flow” is used to describe a mental state of concentration, absorption in immediate activities and effective task accomplishment. Worker flow states are therefore when your employees enter this headspace, immersed in their immediate work and a sense of in-the-moment clarity and creativity.

Psychologists add one last criterion to achieving the flow state — losing the ego. Not the kind that means conceit, but the one that’s self-critical and idea-repressing. In the psychology world, losing the ego means momentarily suspending your sense of self. This, in turn, can lead to higher feelings of mental acuity, adaptability, positivity and productivity. Who knew losing could mean gaining something better?

design for focus

Those working in a quiet, distraction-reducing Pod have a higher likelihood of entering the psychological flow state. SnapCab Pods are explicitly designed for focus. Each of the three available sizes features parts and technology with a distraction-reducing onus, including:

  • Acoustic panels with sound-absorbing materials, fabricated especially to keep what’s going on outside the Pod on the outside, and what’s happening inside, inside.
  • Carpet flooring that comes standard in each size, further reducing the amount of noise that would otherwise leach in.
  • Tempered glass front doors with precision-closing, sealing Pods and lending you a private, noise-absorbing space.
  • Felt ceiling, rounding out the design features that make Pods the office’s go-to, flow-state zone.

When is the flow state needed in the office?

  • When writing: Reports, pitches, outlines, presentations, blog posts, sales collateral, speeches and more. Office Pods for writing are an ideal setting to get words-based work done — and is a function of the workday that won’t be going anywhere — or getting replaced by robots — anytime soon. Conversations about last night’s big game won’t distract you from nailing marketing copy or churning out that brief to impress the boss.
  • When designing: Like writing-based work, those dedicated to design often need quiet, removed spaces to stir up their creative juices. Whether you’re creating product spec sheets, building blueprints or drafting the final presentation for tomorrow’s big board meeting, Pods can offer flow-inducing respite.
  • When ideating: Idea generation thrives when employees have the time and confidence to follow their whims and feel empowered to produce innovative work. Pods give them a resource to do so. A fully enclosed office cubicle amidst an expansive open floorplan lends the quiet thinkers and inspired extravert alike a spot to flesh out their ideas. Plus, with Pods’ innate mobility, employees can be as remote or close-to-the-action as they prefer.

2. To Get the Right Space for the Right Conversation

Open-office concepts are notorious for sound problems. Yes, the sprawling expanse, natural light and collaborative energy have their benefits when it comes to lifting the atmosphere at work. Yet they encourage both audible and visual distractions that can disrupt the linear cognitive processing needed for the human brain to enter a state of focused productivity.

In fact, offices with uncontrolled noise levels have been shown to court many of the following issues:

  • More missed deadlines
  • Higher rates of absenteeism
  • Reduced employee engagement
  • Faster spreading of colds, flu and other illness
  • Increased difficulties in both ease and meaning of interactions

Difficult conversations due to sound and visual distractions aren’t relegated solely to office work. Other industries operating outside of that traditional cubicle-speckled space face their fair share of noise challenges, too. Consider the following environments where noise reduction is a premium — and sometimes even a compliance — concern:

  • Hospitals and clinics
  • Pharmacies
  • Veterinarian offices
  • Laboratories
  • Libraries

Pods offer a solution. Rather than fill your office space with heavy cubicles or your clinic with immobile partitions meant to reduce these visual and audio interferences, give your employees direct access to private conversation Pods.

These Pods become the go-to booths for personal and professional conversations. No disruptive noise interfering with important speeches, presentations or reports. No other voices muting your own. Once installed, these quiet pods create the kind of space dedicated to the smooth, productive conversations necessary for any workplace to function.

Go to booth for conversations

There are many ways SnapCab Pods can be used as conversation booths:

  • Pods as phone booths: Office pods work great for phone calls of any nature. For professional purposes, many employees need a fully enclosed space to make business and conference calls without interference. Likewise, when personal matters pop up — as they inevitably do — workers can step away for a moment to take care of the matter at hand without causing a scene or distracting others.
  • Pods as video conferencing booths: Each of the three Pod sizes has simple plug-and-play electronic connection to a standard 110VAC outlet. Video conference calls can avoid the free-floating noise of offices plus other conversations and idle chit-chatters that make it hard to concentrate. The Pods’ installed tabletop gives employees a place to set up laptops and any other video calling devices.
  • Pods as compliant consultation stations: Medical facilities like hospitals and clinics may benefit from quiet, removed areas dedicated to private patient consultations. Doctors and nurses can review test results and have other HIPPA-sensitive conversations in a secure location, without the worry of private information being overheard.

3. To Get Some Quick R&R

Not so long ago, getting caught napping at work was likely to earn an employee a one-way ticket home. Nowadays, it’s gaining traction as a workplace amenity that many age groups say they prioritize.

The trend began with Silicon Valley and West Coast startups whose employees clocked in such long hours, napping become a necessity rather than a luxury. However, more and more research is highlighting the correlation between rest and recovery and actual workplace productivity — not just the appearance of it.

recharge in the workplace

While napping may still raise eyebrows in certain work cultures and remains far from mainstream, Pods can strike a balance that makes both management and employees happy. What’s more, SnapCab office Pods can go beyond napping. There are many ways to “recharge” in the workplace:

  • Office pods for napping: Both M and L Pods can be installed into quieter areas of the workplace. Serving as designated recharge booths, you won’t have employees slinking off to hidden corners to catch some Z’s — or worse, taking a nap out in the open at their desk. Offices can pick to outfit their nap Pods with SnapCab’s own line of furniture or purchase their own.
  • Pods for quiet relaxation: Neuropsychology has proven taking strategic breaks from heavy “think work” stimulates creativity and executive functions while boosting your overall mood. Even a five-minute pause cools down the parts of the brain responsible for stress and anxiousness, allowing the beneficial brain states to take hold. SnapCab Pods can be used explicitly as private break rooms, great for reading during a lunch break, quick meditations or any other activity that helps calm and collect your workforce.
  • Pods for catching up with colleagues: Take a quick break to swap stories or share some downtime with close colleagues, all within a comfortable enclosure. When inside a Pod, no one will have to worry about distracting other employees or holding their conversation in an inappropriate area.
  • Pods as a snack or beverage station: L Pods are large enough to house the coffee and snack bars so prized in today’s workplaces. Employees can step inside and treat themselves to food and drink of their choice, momentarily removed from their hectic desks or workstations. With the Pods’ motion-activated LED lights and fans, no one needs to remember to turn off the off lights to save electricity when done, plus the smell of food and drinks stays contained within the Pod.

4. To Get Some Privacy

The average office worker will be interrupted once every 11 minutes. Post-interruption, it can take some individuals up to 23 minutes to get back on track with their work, according to research from the University of California, Irvine.

These same studies also illustrate the real reason for so many interruptions. Surprisingly, it isn’t other coworkers coming over to talk about their terrible morning commute — it’s peripheral stimulus.

Small but enticing visual changes — such as someone getting up from a chair or emerging unexpectedly from around the corner — catch people’s attention even if they just see the change out of the corner of their eyes. Even tiny visual changes create mental distractions that pull people from their immediate work, with derailment potential that adds up.

If the problem behind productivity rests in visual stimulation, then so, too, must the solution. That’s where Pods’ privacy-first fabrication comes in.

Privacy pods

Built from full-panel walls, ceilings, carpet flooring and tempered glass doors, SnapCab Pods are a complete enclosure. They reduce the likelihood of visual distractions by encasing employee lines of sight in a way few other office space solutions can, mitigating those problematic peripheral visuals and therefore reducing what and who can be seen.

In other words, when you work inside a Pod, you’re quite literally blocking out visual distractions — a winning productivity recipe according to neuropsychology.

Pods provide an intuitive privacy solution for a range of employee seclusion needs:

  • Privacy from the physical world: Pods eliminate the hustle and bustle of the workplace. They’re quiet, enclosed and comfortable, so your employees can kick back and work on whatever needs their full attention.
  • Privacy from screens: Between desktops, laptops, smartphones, televisions and fully digital walls, it’s hard to find a screenless spot in the workspace. The sheer number of screens can be jarring and distracting, not to mention the numerous interruptions that come from opening multiple Internet tabs, checking social media, receiving texts and spotting email alerts on our personal devices.
  • Privacy from interpersonal interruptions: Even well-meaning coworkers can offset accomplishing our to-do lists with harmless questions and conversations. Seating yourself in a Pod is a simple way to signal your desire for a retreat.
  • Privacy for essential tasks and conversations: As noted above, privacy is preferred for many communications, and privacy can be a compliance measure. Pods act as privacy portals for formal and informal exchanges which regulations mandate must be done securely.

5. To Get Personal Workspace Touches

Surveys show one of the top requests from employees on their workplace wish list is a more personalized environment. Namely, they want offices and workstations with homey touches — think couches, armchairs, throw pillows, cubbies, light fixtures and even spatially diverse rooms.

More personalized workspaces look better, and they encourage place identity. Place identity is the psychological effect of a place on people — how individuals feel in their surroundings, plus how those feelings influence mood, behavior, self-perception and activity.

Personalized workspaces can be eclectic and creative. Most importantly, they should match the culture of the organization, with decorative touches that are on-brand as well as intimate. Bland fluorescent lights and rows of identical desks are a design punchline for a reason. They don’t curate positive place identity, and they don’t allow employees to see themselves as involved with their surroundings.

add a personalized homey touch

Pods add personalized, homey touches to nearly any work environment. It’s one of their key design advantages, allowing you to reinvent that environment to be productive and personal — exactly what employees say they’re looking for.

Both within and outside the booths themselves, organizations can showcase their personal and brand aesthetic touches in a few ways:

  • Wall panels: Pod wall panels are made from standard or high-pressure laminate or Corning® Gorilla® Glass. This gives you almost endless customization capabilities, to be built in your selected colors, patterns or even high-resolution imagery.
  • Furniture: Pod furniture can come outfitted with chairs, couches and various-sized tables. Each can be embellished with the cozier design touches described above to amplify the ambiance of the space.
  • Finish: Want an eye-catching sheen on your Pods? Our standard white laminate comes in a high-gloss finish that’ll do the trick. Looking for something bolder? We can make panels from high-pressure laminate sourced across color schemes from your exact desired manufacturer. Through our design consultation process, we can make sure our Pod panels match nearly any current workplace aesthetic.

Office Pods Are Revolutionizing the Workplace — Design Yours Today

Our dynamic team of SnapCab representatives would love to explore what spatial problems our S, M and L Pods could solve for your organization. Reach out online or request Pod information today.

How to Escape the Noise of an Open Workspace

We know why you came to this page: Your open office is too loud. Fortunately, as an employer, you have the power to change your situation. Instead of finding out how to block out office noise or concentrate in a noisy office, you can address the problem itself. With just a few changes in your office’s layout, you can increase productivity, morale and concentration. Try some of the open office plan noise reduction strategies below.

1.) Add White Noise

You would think that adding more sound to your noisy space would make your problem worse. But the real issue lies in the type of noise your employees hear, not how much. Our brains try to understand background speech even when we don’t realize it. As a result, we find ourselves more distracted without always understanding why. White noise covers up speech noises throughout the office and lets you concentrate on work.

2.) Set Up Noise-Absorbing Decor

Sound-absorbing decor goes far beyond acoustic panels, and even offices on tight budgets can afford some of it. Soft materials like fabric block noise better than hard surfaces. Try adding couches, chairs, and rugs to lessen the impact of your office’s sounds. Plants also have noise-absorbing properties that help you concentrate. Large and leafy varieties block sounds most effectively.

3.) Change Your Office Layout

By separating areas of noise, you can ensure that your employees only hear what they need to hear. Place teams that work together often in desk clusters separated by noise-absorbing furniture. You can also try moving loud equipment like printers, copy machines, and paper shredders to a different room or an isolated corner. Keep working spaces away from noisy areas of the building, such as elevators.

4.) Add Dividers

Bring the benefits of cubicle spaces to your open office with the use of partitions. You don’t have to close your employees in when you use dividers in your workspace. Divide clusters of desks with your partitions, or choose dividers with see-through elements. Even half-dividers can make a big difference, especially if they have a sound-absorbing material.

5.) Look Above and Below

Sound travels through all areas of your workplace, not just the main floor. Consider installing floor or ceiling components made to block noise. You could use free-hanging ceiling units, acoustic tiles or an affordable carpet. Some types of flooring even have the express purpose of absorbing sounds.

6.) Create Separate Spaces with SnapCab® Pods

Offering distinct spaces for loudness and quiet will keep your main office floor at a reasonable sound level. Create break rooms where your employees can socialize in their free time or meeting spaces for deep work. For the best results, designate both quiet and loud zones to keep noise under control.

If you don’t have the money to spare to build a new room, you still have an affordable option. The SnapCab Pod acts as a separate space from the rest of your office. It offers many of the amenities of a new room in a modular package. Learn more about our Pods by checking out our catalog or getting in touch online.

Your Complete Guide to Coworking

Working remotely is the dream for nearly three-fourths of working Americans — until it isn’t.

Wearing what you want. Avoiding office politics. A morning commute consisting of walking from your desk to the fridge to grab a glass of orange juice. Working from a home office often conjures this breezy picture, complete with a distraction-free environment that allows you to get done what you want, how you want it — not waiting in 45 minutes of freeway traffic only to be confined to a cubicle.

Yet working from home is not without its costs.

As the almost four million freelancers, entrepreneurs, part-and-full-time remote workers in the country know, there are some just some things about an office environment you can’t replace. From the conversations and camaraderie that crop up to the sense of purpose that comes with stepping into an office, what remote working holds in flexibility, it often lacks in fellowship.

That’s where coworking steps in.

What Is Coworking?

What is co working

Coworking, or office sharing, is an emerging workplace trend that aims to bridge the office gap for full- and part-time remote workers.

They are collaborative workspaces where individuals buy memberships to gain access and use a workspace, similar to a gym. Once you’ve joined, you’ll find yourself in the midst of other remote or freelance professionals with an itch for office energy yet each doing their own thing — the best of both work worlds. With membership in-hand, you head to your coworking space when you want, as much as you want, so long as you pay the fees.

Also like a gym, these memberships can be monthly or in some cases even daily. Most coworking spaces will follow one of two models — members can adopt to purchase their own desk, private and reserved exclusively for them, or they can subscribe for a general membership allowing them to work at any desk, table or area for the day that’s open and to their liking.

Collaborative workspaces can also come with a range of amenities to make the environment as close to a standard office as possible, including:

  • WiFi
  • Printers and scanners, plus other office supplies
  • Meeting rooms
  • Coffee stations
  • Snack bars
  • Kitchens or kitchenettes
  • Recreation areas or lounges
  • Community networking events

More Than a Home Office

Combining the sociability of a traditional workplace with the productivity and versatility those working from home cherish, coworking represents a new frontier in modern office spaces.

By the end of 2018, millions of people will be members of a coworking office space. The most-cited reason for joining? The desire to work independently and maintain a healthier work-life balance yet still interact with others and share a sense of community. Home offices simply can’t curate this.

Trends also forecast that more people than ever will be working remotely in the upcoming decade. Some estimates put remote-working participant numbers to rival those of at full-time, fixed office locations as soon as 2025. Coworking spaces are picking up steam worldwide, too. Currently, there over half of all countries have collaborative workspace options and networks, from monthly, full-access memberships to by-the-hour, as-needed hot desking.

All this points to an exciting time for those who can embrace collaborative office spaces. Coworking versus a home office shares the same principles — to lend workers mobility, productivity and a greater sense of autonomy. The former, however, doesn’t sacrifice that all-important human connection in the process.

Why Are Shared Work Spaces Trending?

There are many factors that, once interwoven, created the right environment for coworking spaces to flourish.

1. Mobile Technology

Technology is the linchpin allowing work beyond the standard office.

mobile technology

At the most basic level, hardware like laptops, tablets and smartphones make remote employees easily plugged-in and accessible, providing the toolkit for outfitting out-of-office productivity. Yet just as important are the advancements in software and apps that turned work borderless. Consider the following:

  • The Cloud: The Cloud has revolutionized remote work, making it possible for employees, freelancers and self-starters to connect to specific networks, run programs, access files and create or edit documents regardless of location.
  • Communication platforms: Digital communication tools — from instant messaging and email to mobile voice and video-over-Internet conferencing — can all be housed on a single platform. Remote and in-house employees access the same interface for the vast majority of their communication needs, sometimes accessing the information or people they need faster than in the office.
  • Document-sharing suites: Centralized, cloud-based document repositories make everyone’s lives easier. Workers can access any document required from organized folders available a few clicks away.
  • Project-management software: Decentralized project-management platforms mean managers can assign tasks and employees can log progress in one digital place. Workers can manage status updates, build calendars, follow deadlines and track benchmarks, all without ever having to meet in person.

These are the very tools needed to connect workforces across borders, conduct virtual meetings and complete project and task workflows — the bread and butter of business operations.

2. The Rise of Independent Workers and the Gig Economy

Remote jobs have only solidified their place as a legitimate career path in recent years. Attitudes about them are shifting, both for employees desiring greater work-life balance and companies looking to attract top talent.

The growing amount of remote, home-based or freelance workers has helped, too. What was once a rarity for a handful of niche telemarketing positions now extends across industries:

  • Over 70 percent of today’s nearly 3.9 million part and full-time remote workers have gone remote in the last four years
  • More than 23 percent of home-based workers work for companies that are also fully remote, without a centralized “home” office
  • Remote gig economy and freelancing are also on the rise. Recent surveys show that nearly one-third of Americans, or approximately 57 million people, now monetize their “side hustles,” participating in part-time freelancing gigs to supplement income or help turn their passions into professions.
  • Coworking spaces and office sharing businesses have grown nearly 200 percent in the last five years, with over 14,000 available locations worldwide.

3. Business Cost Savings

Freelancers and remote workers aren’t the only ones using coworking spaces. From fresh startups to multi-national corporations like IBM, Uber and Salesforce, more and more established enterprises are jumping on the coworking office bandwagon.

They’re saving serious money by doing so. Commercial real estate prices in many parts of the country sit at record highs, making monthly rent unfeasible for many operations — and down payments an outright fantasy.

business cost savings

Coworking spaces and shared offices offer a cost-effective alternative. Research shows that coworking memberships — both for private offices or for unreserved hot desks — stand to save organizations the following compared to office leasing:

  • Startups and small businesses with less than a dozen employees can save up to $2,700 a month through coworking
  • Overhead costs are virtually eliminated, including expenses like utilities, maintenance and space purchased for employee parking
  • By 2020, 50 percent of large companies will sponsor some form of shared workspaces for their remote workforce

Pros and Cons of Coworking

Those interested in coworking and office sharing have a few key considerations to review. Weighing shared workspace benefits with drawbacks will help individuals and enterprises alike make the right call on this unique kind of environment.

1. Pros of Coworking

Some of the most common benefits of shared office space include the following:

  • Flexibility: Go in when you want. Stay home when you want. Shared office spaces give you back control of your work time and spatial preferences, as well as curates a healthier sense of work-life balance.
  • Worker happiness: Nearly 90 percent of remote employees with a coworking membership report being happier when at their shared workspaces.
  • Employee engagement: Studies also show 84 percent of coworking participants are more motivated and engaged at work, variables that reduce absenteeism and increase productivity.
  • Diverse networking affordances: The very nature of coworking spaces goes hand-in-hand with professional networking opportunities. They’re literally designed to encourage interactions. What’s more, everyone has indicated their interest in meeting others just by signing up for a membership. This means easier connections in an organic setting, the ideal recipe for authentic networking.
  • Knowledge sharing: Collaborative workspaces are filled with freelancers, entrepreneurs, full- and part-time employees across dozens of industries. From creative to technical talent, you’ll benefit from rubbing elbows with people in vastly different roles than you — and maybe learn a thing or two along the way.
  • Community: Perhaps most importantly, the benefits of a shared office space lies in its sense of connection. Working from home can be isolating. When you head to a shared space, you’re immersed in a group of like-minded professionals, each working toward individual goals. The communal buzz is palpable.

2. Cons of Coworking

Like any work environment, though, coworking spaces come with their fair share of potential downsides.

  • Poor Internet connection: Signal interference is the most common culprit behind slow coworking WiFi. With so many people pulling from the networks, your laptop and smartphone must continually resend input messages to complete a task, leading to frustrating lag times.
  • Lack of privacy: Coworking spaces are, by their nature, communal. They aim to pack an eclectic office feel into a hyper-efficient amount of space. Yet some people may find it too uncomfortable to share desks and tables or have their workstation surrounded by ceaseless activity. This is especially true if the shared office is at capacity, making the lack of privacy that much more apparent.
  • Noise: Like many of today’s open-concept offices and floor plans, collaborative workspaces can get loud. Without a sound-reducing solution, everything from in-person conversations to phone calls and video conferences can be difficult, if not uncourteous to anyone on the other end of the line. Plus, you still have to work in this environment, a difficult undertaking if noise keeps distracting you.

What Are the Costs of Shared Office Spaces?

costs of co working

Coworking membership prices will vary. They’ll be influenced by the very same things that set commercial and residential rental listings:

  • Location, location, location: You’ve heard the mantra before for a reason. The most critical variable in property values will be its location. A desk at the coworking loft in the heart of downtown’s trendiest neighborhood will cost more than the one five miles away, tucked into a quieter suburban corner.
  • Area real estate market: The supply and demand of the local property market will also affect coworking space membership costs. If real estate is hot, so, too, are the prices to occupy it. That will likely be reflected in your membership fee.
  • Workspace type: Hot desking will be the most cost-effective choice for freelancers and remote workers interested in collaborative workspaces, followed by a single, reserved desk. For those interested in further privacy, some coworking spaces offer cubicles or even offices you buy exclusive rights to use.
  • Amenities: Some shared offices will include coffee, snacks and maybe even a Friday beer keg as part of your membership. Others will charge for these amenities a-la-carte style, which you’ll need to calculate.

On average, a coworking monthly membership cost for an unreserved hot desk in the U.S. is $200 to $450. A reserved desk at a shared office space will cost $400 to $575, while a single private office runs between $500 and $1,100 a month.

To truly assess if a coworking space is worth it, try one out. It’s not uncommon for companies or landlords who own collaborative office spaces to give prospective customers a free trial, usually in the form of a day or week pass.

Ideal Set-Up for a Coworking Environment

The ideal setup for a coworking office space is one that balances productivity with privacy, flexibility with feasibility. But most of all, it prioritizes the individual’s choice.

This choice-first office design comes down to a mix of furniture and fixtures, configured to produce a work environment where the space doesn’t feel overcrowded or overstimulating, and individuals can achieve tasks without feeling shut away or isolated. Coworking spaces can set this up through the following:

1. Mix of Workstations

A mix of workstations is the first way to set up the ideal coworking office. From individual desks to tables, benches, bar seating and even couches, a little diversity in workstations goes a long way.

Not only does it align with the different membership models, but it lets members select the seating and surface types most comfortable for the day’s priorities. They aren’t confined to a static desk or hidden away in a huge, immobile cubicle.

2. Break-Out Areas

Similar to a range of workstations, the best coworking spaces are those with a range of environments themselves. Think designated places for group work, dedicated places for individual productivity and dedicated places for rest, where members can hit the pause button and let their brains momentarily unwind.

SnapCab’s® line of Pods offers a unique workspace solution in this regard. With three different sizes, they’re designed to deliver the exact kind of spatial differentiation a desirable coworking office needs.

  • Pod S is perfect for standalone workstations or sound-absorbing, individual work booths
  • Pod M fits two to four people comfortably, great for small meetings, calls and consultations
  • Pod L has room for up to six individuals, an optimal choice for meeting rooms or even as a private member office

3. Mobile Furniture

Mobile furniture maintains the flexibility and adaptability so at the heart of the modern coworking office. Each of our Pods is portable and reconfigurable, with easy assembly that’s meant to be moved around as needed. You design them as you like then wheel them into place — literally.

4. Outfitted Technology

Last but not least, shared workspaces today must come outfitted with contemporary technology. Otherwise, they’re short-selling their members, making even the most routine office operations like a video conference call impossible.

SnapCab Portals are an innovative office-tech solution that integrates multi-media walls with whiteboards. They come with a customizable technology panel as well, meaning other digital and electronic tools can be installed and synced with the Portal wall. For coworking office spaces where collaboration is a premium and technology connecting remote workers pivotal, few solutions are more prime.

Contact SnapCab to Get Started on the Perfect Collaborative Coworking Office Space

At SnapCab, we produce modern office spatial products that align with the spirit and innovation of coworking spaces.

Like shared offices, we saw a growing need for workplaces to meet the functional and aesthetic demands of today’s workforce. Through our Pods and Portals, we’re reimagining what tomorrow’s office can be — and what its employees can accomplish.

Contact a SnapCab representative to hear more about our office-spatial products. We can’t wait to bring your coworking vision to life. 

Contact SnapCab

In Defense of Open Workspaces

Thanks to a study published by Harvard researchers this past July, open offices are again a hot topic. Writers already discussed these workspace plans all the time, but the research results added even more fuel to the fire. So, what did the study say that caused so much controversy? It found that open offices decreased face-to-face interaction instead of improving it. Enter the hot takes on both sides.

What impact does this conversation have on your decisions as a workspace owner? It turns out that this issue is more nuanced than “why open offices are good” vs. “why open offices are bad.”

We’re here to set the record straight.

The Benefits of an Open Office Design

Let’s start with the reasons why people advocate for open workspaces. Open office plan advantages include:

  • Affordability: When you have a tight budget, an open office costs less than a traditional cubicle farm. You can rent just about any large space and convert it to an open plan.
  • Morale: Working out of a cubicle or personal office can get drab and lonely. An open office lets your employees see their coworkers instead of a gray wall.
  • Collaboration: If your work involves a lot of idea sharing, having everyone in the same space makes it easier to complete projects together.

Common Criticisms of Open Offices

However, not everyone enjoys this workspace concept. They cite reasons like lack of privacy, distractions and bad employee behavior. With the release of the Harvard study, these critics feel vindicated. But many would argue that these issues don’t have a direct link to the area plan itself. The study doesn’t necessarily prove this connection, either.

When you read any study, you need to understand it in the context of the entire field. The Harvard research was the very first to look at face-to-face interaction in an open office. That means that you have no other data on the subject. While the authors put a lot of work into their research design, no study can prove anything on its own. In other words, you shouldn’t jump to conclusions just yet.

Make the Pros of Open Office Environments Outweigh the Cons

The critics of open offices have valid concerns, but you can’t link them to the spaces themselves. In fact, many of their reasons have to do with the employees and employer. Think about it — the employer is responsible for creating a comfortable space. Nobody enjoys getting crowded together, whether they work in a cubicle or an open office. And the employees themselves are accountable for their behavior. A conscientious employer will balance privacy and openness and discipline harassment.

In other words, the problem isn’t the plan — it’s the workplace. If you add separate private spaces like SnapCab® Pods, your employees can escape to a quiet place. Following a no-tolerance harassment policy can protect employees from bad eggs. Design your open space well, and you’ll reap the benefits. You don’t have to do it alone, either. Book a free design session with us, and we’ll help you create a productive open office.

Meeting Pods for Open Offices

Open office plans help your company save money and encourage collaboration among your employees. But if you don’t have a separate private space for meetings, your employees can’t do their best work. We designed the SnapCab® Pod to enhance open spaces like yours. It gives you a private office booth that moves to wherever you want it.

Your Personal Office Booth

The SnapCab Pod is your very own modular space. Its three sizes can hold one to two, two to four, or four to six people, making it perfect for smaller meetings. Turn your SnapCab Pod S into an office phone Pod, or use the SnapCab Pod L as the ideal conference space. Choose from top-quality materials such as Corning® Gorilla® Glass and acoustic panels to make your Pod fit your needs and budget. Use the mounted casters to roll your Pod anywhere, anytime.

The Perks of SnapCab Meeting Pods

When you add a SnapCab Pod to your office, you don’t have to compromise between privacy and the benefits of an open workspace. Enjoy features such as:

  • Fast and easy installation: You don’t have the time or money to deal with costly and lengthy renovations. The modular parts and plug-and-play design make setup a — forgive the pun — snap. Every component pieces together flawlessly to get it ready for use in no time.
  • Sound absorption: Thanks to the top-notch seals, ventilation fan, and optional acoustic wall panels, you get a virtually soundproof office Pod. The materials and construction minimize outside sound, so you can focus on what’s important.
  • Customization whenever you want: From the very beginning, we let you design your Pod the way you like. We offer both affordable and deluxe materials to help you stay within budget. Swap out new panels at any time when you want to make an upgrade or change.
  • Plug-and-play functionality: Every Pod comes with a power bar that includes three 110v AC outlets and two USB charging ports. No need for an electrician to hook up your Pod — just plug it into an outlet like any other device.
  • Ultimate comfort: The Pod’s amenities make it feel like a full room. Dimmable lights, a ventilation fan, and carpet keep you comfortable, not claustrophobic. A motion sensor turns the lighting and fan on whenever you enter your custom office booth.
  • Optional built-in furniture: You don’t have to look around for seating and tables that fit your Pod. Ask us to add seating or tables, and we’ll add perfectly sized ones to your order.

Need More Information? How About a No-Obligation Quote?

Interested in adding a SnapCab Pod to your open office space? Let’s have a chat. You can call our design sessions a “Q&A” or a “back-and-forth.” We let you control the conversation— tell us what you want, and we’ll let you know if we can make it happen. During a free design session, we’ll talk about:

  • Your specifications and design vision
  • Your personalization choices
  • Your selection of materials and finishes

What are you waiting for? Get in touch today. We promise we don’t bite.

How to Stay Focused in an Open Office

Whatever our work environment is, we need to stay on task and focused throughout the day. When we allow ourselves to become too distracted, our work suffers. We either neglect things we need to get done or let the quality of our work to slip. Employees face distractions whether they work at home, in a private office or at an office with an open plan

If you work in an office with an open floor plan and are having trouble concentrating at work, we’re here to help!

Working in an Open Plan Office

Working in an open plan office has its own unique benefits. If you’re not familiar with this style of office, employees work together in one big room instead of having their own private office. Employees can have a closed cubicle or even just a desk. However, management usually still has their own private offices.

Open plan offices have become very popular in recent years because they offer advantages over other office setups. With — literally — no walls separating employees, many managers believe that open floor plans promote better communication through increased coordination and collaboration. If you have a question for a coworker, you only have to walk a few desks away or even just ask if they’re sitting right by you. When your coworkers are more accessible, it can make getting your job done a lot easier.

Tips for Working in an Open Office

Even though open plan offices offer unique benefits, it also causes more distractions. Here are some of our best pieces of advice on how to have better focus at work:

  • Plug In: One of the universal signals for “let me be” is wearing headphones or earbuds. When you’re wearing them, most people know to leave you alone unless it is very important. And on top of that, it helps drown out extra noise going on in the office. When there aren’t any walls separating you from your coworkers, you hear everything. That noise can become a problem, and headphones help block it out.
  • Put Up a Sign: If you don’t want to wear headphones or earbuds all day, you can create a different type of sign to let your coworkers know to let you work. You can use an actual “do not disturb” sign or use a different type of signal. If you want to try this out, just be sure to talk to a manager beforehand and then let your coworkers know to leave you alone when the sign is out there.
  • Take Breaks: If you need to force yourself to focus, you need a break. Walking away from your work for a little bit can help a lot more than working all day long. Taking a break will help refresh your brain, and when you start working again, you can get back on track.
  • Create Designated Quiet Areas: If you have a big space, talk to management about creating a part of the office as a quiet space. If someone is working there, it means they do not want to be disturbed and need some time to work alone.

At SnapCab, we’ve developed a solution to enjoying the perks of an open plan office without the problems. Our SnapCab Pod® gives employees a private workspace that is portable, easily assembled and convenient. Learn more about Pods by contacting us today.

The Advantages of Open Office Spaces

Open-floor offices remain the proverbial talk-of-the-town for businesses looking to maximize space and employee morale while minimizing costs and outdated work structures. Even with more than half of employees in an Oxford study citing they enjoy the congeniality and laid-back nature of open-concept office spaces, naysayers point to the subsequent jump in noise distractions as a reason to discredit the design trend’s hype.

Contemporary open-office designs and spaces can have the best of both worlds — friendly, expansive floor plans hacking collaboration and employee moods, but still outfitted with adaptive, private workstations. This open-office hybrid layout maintains productivity and privacy while still lending all the advantages of wide, unrestricted space — strengths that put both employees and their managers at ease. Here are 10 of them.

advantages of open office spaces

1. They’re Inviting

Open floor plan offices prioritize worker collaboration and innovative interactions. Yes, we throw these words around so often with open floor plans that many drown them out — but that doesn’t negate the reality of their inviting impression and its related psychological benefits.

open floor plan

Study after study has found the warm, approachable atmosphere an open-concept office layout curates does boost employee morale. More specifically, it leads employees to feel like they’re part of something larger than themselves, more able to connect the dots between roles and domains and see those roles as holistically supported.

What’s more, open offices improve levels of knowledge sharing, the concept that employees are more freely exchanging subject matter expertise. Better knowledge-sharing flows are associated with more cooperative and high-functioning teams. This, in turn, means well-rounded and informed employees who can make sharper business decisions, all because the open floor plan invites them to do so.

2. They’re Versatile

Open-concept floor plans lend offices much-needed yet often-neglected flexibility. In today’s world of changing work trends, employee expectations and evolving remote-work technologies, a company layout you can tweak and adapt is one that will withstand the test of time.

First, dropping rows of stationary cubicles for simple tables or desks innately makes that space more amenable. Furniture is reconfigurable, and in some cases, you can shift it to a different part of the office depending on in-the-moment needs.

Furthermore, open office spaces allow businesses to implement alternative workstations. Many herald alternative workstations as the future of the business office, where instead of private cubicles and static meeting rooms, offices come furnished with stand-alone booths, multifaced furniture and breakout modular offices — all of which should be mobile.

Some of the best examples of an alternative workstation’s versatility in an open office include our SnapCab® Pods. Pods offer private individual or collaborative work booths employees can access as needed, with different sizes and seating options you can move around as needed.

3. They’re Cost-Effective

Another advantage to open office spaces is their cost competitiveness. For businesses in their early days or those with tied-up equity, finding ways to maximize your current space without sacrificing productivity is vital to maintaining a leaner bottom line.

Cost-effectiveness

The cost-effectiveness introduced to a business with an open floor plan comes in a couple of forms:

  • Construction: Companies constructing a new location or business from the ground up save up-front when they opt for a majority open layout. This is intuitive, as these spaces require fewer walls and internal scaffolding to create the rooms and partitions associated with a traditional office.
  • Rent: Organizations renting their office space can better utilize what they have through an open, unencumbered layout. Not only do open-concept rentals offer a cost-per-square-footage advantage, but they’re also more versatile. You can fill, arrange and rearrange the space as you see fit — as opposed to being forced into static room molds with less functionality but the same price tag.
  • Overhead Costs: Overhead costs like utilities will be reduced in an open concept layout. Heating and cooling come centralized in one overarching system. Other lessened expenses include electricity, since open-concept offices receive more natural light.
  • Office Equipment Expenses: Fewer walls in your office layout mean fewer cubicle partitions, clunky desks and repetitive office appliances to buy up-front and place in individual departments, like copiers and printers. You can centralize equipment in one collaborative area for all to access — this also makes it easier for office managers to oversee these devices.

4. They’re Horizontal — Especially If Upper Management Embraces Them

Private and corner offices reinforce vertical organizational hierarchy. While a company needs a logical chain of command to function, they don’t necessarily need the space to emphasize it.

With open-concept spaces, a company chooses to display a sense of collaboration and worker agency. Regardless of actual seniority, staffers are encouraged to take ownership of their tasks and make empowered decisions without executive micromanagement. Senior managers share the same general space with their team — and their team’s teams — on down the line. If static or removed offices do exist, they’re reserved only for C-level executives whose daily decisions and communications require a tad bit more privacy.

As a middle ground for middle and upper management, SnapCab’s Pod L is large enough that it offers room for up to six. Many have also chosen to fabricate the Pod L into a private office for appointed personnel within an open concept office without losing the spirit and integrity of the floor plan. Plus, with its sound-absorbing acoustic panels and glass front wall and door, noises stay to a minimum but those inside are still visible and accessible to the rest of the team.

5. They’re Contemporary

It’s undeniable that open-concept office floorplans and design layouts have become the defining corporate trend. Like any trend, though, they have their pros and cons. Yet unequivocally, the open office is one that’s stylish, smart and modern.

These office aesthetics are not to be taken lightly. Companies with contemporary, appealing designs and building details are more likely to retain talent, see lower rates of turnover and employ people who report higher levels of worker engagement and satisfaction.

The trick lies in hacking an office’s surroundings and environment to boost the very behaviors you want from workers. Traits like positivity, creativity and efficiency are far likelier with the contemporary design hacks open-concept layouts court:

  • Green or Biophilic Features: Plenty of plants and greenery in an office go a long way to reduce levels of worker stress and anxiety. Other “green” features — such as the use of natural materials throughout a building, like wood and stone, or curved rather than straight lines — further amplify an office’s calming environment.
  • Natural Lighting: Even buildings that don’t have the luxury of expansive, floor-to-ceiling windows can find ways to maximize natural light. Install plenty of reflective, glossy surfaces, clear glass and even mirrors throughout the office to let light permeate as far as possible.
  • Diverse Workstations: A mix of shared, private, public, relaxed and collaborative breakout work areas are the key to balancing employee happiness with productivity.
  • Color Schemes: Colors produce a range of physiological and emotional triggers in humans. We can utilize them throughout the office to help curate beneficial moods and enhance workers’ energy levels.

6. They’re Scalable

Another distinct advantage of open office spaces over traditional ones is their scalability. As your business grows, so does the office, as open-concept layouts provide ample room to accommodate new employees, desks and furniture. All it takes is a little creative reconfiguration — not a total renovation.

In many competitive real estate markets, the costs to relocate or renovate render these choices impossible for most businesses. Whether a business rents or owns doesn’t let them off the hook. Expensive upgrades in a rental contract mean renegotiating the terms and conditions of your lease. On the other hand, even if you own the structure or land where your business is, the list of legal, compliance and code standards to meet is enough to give even determined business owners second thoughts.

None of this is particularly attractive for businesses across industry types, as internal construction projects can risk everything from business service downtimes to higher rates of absenteeism. An office layout scalable from the beginning best mitigates these concerns.

7. They Boost Social Interactions

Introverts and extroverts alike reap health benefits from social interaction — so much so that the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has for years recommended offices find ways to boost sociability within the nine-to-five grind.

Now, this doesn’t mean a work culture where everyone hangs out and nothing gets done. But it does disrupt the habitual trap of employees walking into work, burrowing into their cubicles and remaining there until day’s end. Both the physical and mental tolls of this kind of environment have been shown to decrease cardiovascular health and increase feelings of stress, loneliness and workplace withdrawal within employees, while sociability and functional amounts of interpersonal time do the opposite.

Open office spaces can encourage social interactions in strategic places within their layouts. These means dedicated collaborative and social areas balanced with designated quiet workstations, ones that are removed from the hustle and carry sound-reducing technology. This shows employees there’s a time and a place for everything — including interpersonal enjoyment.

8. They Improve Physical and Mental Health

psychological advantages

If this seems too good to be true, think again. Open-concept offices provide keen psychological advantages to most employees that boost their physical and mental well-being — and it does so in some surprising ways:

  • Improved Design Features: To begin, open office spaces tend to include design elements like higher ceilings and larger windows. This means more natural light and more access to appealing window views for workers, which has keen mental benefits such as boosting energy, positivity and decreasing feelings of burnout while at work.
  • More Types of Workstations: Open office spaces allow for broader workstation types and flexibility. This is a critical spatial element that gives workers the autonomy and flexibility to perform their tasks in places most innately productive for them — not relegate them to a static desk day in and day out.
  • Increased Staff Interaction: As mentioned earlier, open-concept offices allow more organic and frequent interactions to occur. The benefits of this cannot be overstated in the office. Research has shown that employees with strong connections and even best friends in the office are less likely to fall ill and more likely to produce consistent, high-quality work.

In total, these elements combine to create a work environment that combats feelings of loneliness and worker solitude. A business that does this is one that sees higher task performance, enhanced creativity and more innovative decision-making — all because the open space prompts it.

9. They’re More Brand-Stimulating

Now, this can quickly go overboard. Open office spaces that haven’t been designed with sound-control features and attention to workstation diversity can be too overly stimulating, with noise distractions, brand logos, colors and saturated workplace density bombarding your personnel.

However, when done right, open offices court visually and aesthetically enhanced floorplans with more opportunities for branded personality. What’s more, you can use them with an eye for marketing. Consider the impact you make on prospective clients or customers when they enter an on-brand, inviting and dynamic corporate space. What kinds of impressions can you curate, and what do they say about the personality, pulse and life of your company? With an open office space, you can tie these visuals together and bring them to the forefront.

10. They Better Showcase Corporate Values

Corporate values are the guiding personality behind a company. They have functional and tactical uses, though most importantly, corporate values should remain relevant for a company across its entire lifecycle — not just fitting its image today or tomorrow, but across the decades. If a company doesn’t see its current mission being important a few years from now, then it hasn’t identified the right purpose.

The advantages of open offices culminate in giving your space the ability to showcase its true self, boldly and openly. It immerses not only your workers in that mission but visitors, customers and prospective employees alike.

Open layout offices more naturally incorporate and let you highlight value-aligned aesthetics. From the minute they step into the office space, open concepts allow things like brand colors, logos, slogans, artwork and other visuals to be seen regardless of vantage point. They also allow your company to proudly display its corporate values — whether literally, writing them on a wall or panels, or imbuing the company’s personality into the style of office furniture, layout and decor. This is inherently harder to display if the office is chopped up and separated by walls and departments.

Overall, the branding potential of open office spaces sharpens your corporate identity and lets form match function. Your office can strike this important note best with an open concept.

SnapCab’s Paneling Systems for Your Hybrid Open Office Solution

Get in touch with Snapcab

Too many businesses still frame open office spaces regarding what must be given up — not what’s gained. Your business or office space doesn’t have to weigh a hefty list of pros and cons with an open concept layout. In fact, it can provide all the benefits above — and more — when you have the right spatial product partner.

SnapCab is here to be just that. Our unique panel products give you best-in-design office solutions, with three sizes of Pod® booth workstations outfitted for privacy, productivity and noise reduction in an open-concept office, as well as a dynamic Portal® multimedia wall to enhance the work that gets done.

We’d love to discuss how SnapCab Pods and Portals can benefit your open-concept office. Get in touch with us today.