February 17, 2023

What Is A Breakout Space?

With more and more people working remotely or from home, office spaces no longer serve the same purpose they used to. The traditional office space if undergoing a transformational shift, and if you're like any business in Melbourne trying to get staff back into the office, you might be wondering how you can redesign your current office spaces to achieve this. One way businesses are adapting their workplaces to be more inviting and collaborative, is through breakout spaces. 

In this guide, we'll explore the benefits of breakout spaces, how to best design one to suit the needs of your business, and finally discuss the costs and considerations of building one.  

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What is a breakout space?

A breakout space is a designated area within an office or other commercial space that is specifically designed to provide a separate area for people to take a break or work away from their normal workspace. These spaces typically offer a more relaxed and informal environment where employees can collaborate with colleagues and clients, work independently, and enjoy a change of scenery. Benefits include: 

  • Productivity: By giving employees the freedom to choose where and how they work, they can find the space that best suits their needs and preferences, which can increase their productivity and focus. 
  • Flexibility: Breakout spaces can be designed to be multi-use and adaptable, so they can be used for a variety of purposes, such as private work, small meetings, brainstorming sessions, or even as a relaxation or meditation space. 
  • Collaboration: Breakout spaces can provide a more casual environment that encourages spontaneous conversations, collaboration, and idea-sharing among employees. This can lead to more creativity and innovation in the workplace. 
  • Wellbeing: Breakout spaces can also provide a space for employees to take a break and recharge. This can help reduce stress and promote mental wellbeing, leading to a happier and more productive workforce. 
  • Visitors: Breakout spaces can also be used for informal meetings with clients and visitors, providing a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere that can help build relationships and promote trust
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Designing a breakout space

To design an effective breakout space as part of an office fitout, both functional and aesthetic elements must be taken into consideration. The basics of a breakout space include providing comfortable and adaptable seating, acoustic treatment to reduce noise, adequate power and audiovisual equipment, and writable walls. In addition, the breakout space should be designed as a focal point in the office, with attention paid to the flooring, accent colors, and the incorporation of biophilic elements like plants and warm lighting. 

Our commercial interior designers take into account various factors when designing a breakout space, including the company's size, culture, and branding. To determine the appropriate size of the breakout space, we usually design it to accommodate 25% of the office fitout's total capacity. For instance, if an office has 40 employees, the breakout space should be designed to seat around 10 people. In terms of culture, we consider the needs of the workforce and incorporate additional acoustics for a fast-moving and active office or focus on the overall aesthetic and premium finishes for an office with a lot of client-facing activities. Furthermore, we strive to reflect the spirit of the company in the breakout space by featuring brand colours, references to the company's service or product range, and other branding elements that align with the overall office fitout. 

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Costs and considerations

Breakout areas often involve more expensive components compared to other parts of an office fitout. This is mainly due to its central role and the need to allocate a larger budget to enhance its overall impression. Additional costs may arise from custom seating arrangements, feature lighting, and flooring that are intend to highlight this space. In addition to this, when fitting out elements that require power and data, such as power points built into seating, you'll need to factor in the additional costs of an electrician to install these as well as the extra customisation required to integrate this into joinery. Lastly, if you're looking to feature greenery, you would also want to consider the cost of a plant hire service. 

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In conclusion, as more and more businesses shift towards remote work, creating inviting and collaborative office spaces has become increasingly important. Breakout spaces offer a variety of benefits, from boosting productivity and creativity to promoting wellbeing and encouraging collaboration. When designing a breakout space, it's important to consider both functional and aesthetic elements, and to tailor the space to the size, culture, and branding of the company. While building a breakout space may involve additional costs, the benefits it provides are well worth the investment.  

Speak with the Canopy Fitouts team for your next office fitout – we don't mind giving you a little advice on cost, budgets, requirements, and timeframes. So give us a call on 1800 434 868 or email info@canopyfitouts.com.au, and we'd be more than happy to chat with you about your business' needs!    

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And let our team bring your business to life. If you are ready to revolutionise your space and impress your clients and customers, enquire below or call us on 1800 434 868.

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