A New York City break room can either positively or negatively impact employees’ workplace experiences. Bland, dark spaces with snacks and beverages no one likes will turn employees away. Well-designed break rooms with plenty of comfortable seating arrangements and delicious snacks, beverages, and fresh food encourage relaxation, spontaneous interaction between colleagues, and creativity. Even though COVID-19 has caused many changes during the past several months and decreased break room visits, micro-markets and vending machines still have an important role to play as employees return to work.
Each New York City employer will reopen their place of business differently and on a timetable that fits their unique organization. Promoting CDC recommended guidelines for “healthy hygiene practices such as hand washing and employees wearing a cloth face covering, as feasible” as well as encouraging social distancing or staying at least 6 feet away from other individuals and cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces daily are just a few new behaviors employers will likely recommend.
A micro-market or set of vending machines is also a tool that New York City employers can use to encourage social distancing, fewer in person interactions, and less time in unknown environments. For example,
- Micro-markets and vending machines offer cashless or touchless payment options including mobile payments and are great for grab-and-go situations.
- To use a micro-market, employees will scan their snack or beverage; scan their smartphone or swipe a debit/card; and walk away.
- To use a vending machine, employees will touch the machine once; scan their smartphone or swipe a debit/card; and walk away.
- Both micro-markets and vending machines are open 24/7, encouraging employees to stay onsite during their workday.
- Staying on-site instead of going off-site for a bite to eat or beverage helps employees avoid external and less controllable environments.
New York City employers should also consider the types of snacks, beverages, and fresh food that will be offered. Making better-for-you choices is more important than ever. Healthier ingredients like fruits and vegetables provide the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that everyone needs to support their immune system. Bottled water and other healthy beverages help by keeping everything in the body hydrated and moving more efficiently.
While healthy options are necessary for a healthy immune system, it is also wise to offer traditional options that are “fun” or provide a mental boost such as chocolate and other snacks. Most New York City employees have been under prolonged stress and enjoying a favorite snack or beverage can provide a bit of an emotional or mental pick-me-up. Offering a balance of traditional and better-for-you options will help employees find the products they need when they want them.
Marché is here to help you safely bring your employees back to work. For more information about our sanitation and safety policies or upgrading your break room to include a micro-market or vending machines, please contact us at 833-627-2431. We are here to help restart the New York City economy one break room at a time.