Re-Invigorate Your Jacksonville Break Room

6 Ways to Re-Invigorate Your Jacksonville Break Room

Re-Invigorate Your Jacksonville Break Room

How will COVID-19 impact your Jacksonville break room going forward? The place that was once a great location to dine, socialize, and collaborate will need to change to better serve your employees and meet post COVID-19 needs. But let’s be clear about one thing—these changes don’t have to be negative. A safe, well-maintained break room is still a valuable benefit that positively affects employee morale and boosts company culture.

The following are six ways to re-invigorate your break room. (Please be sure to implement them in a way that follows the recommendations issued by public health agencies and experts.)

The Physical Layout

Depending on the size of your space, there are several options that can help encourage social distancing. 

  • Limit the number of employees allowed in the room at one time. 
  • Reduce or eliminate seating options.
  • Move equipment and displays further apart if space allows.

Even without available seating, employees will still be able to enjoy the benefits of grab-and-go food and beverage options. Convenient refreshment options also encourage fewer employee trips away from the office during the workday.

Refreshment Selections

Re-Invigorate Your Jacksonville Break Room

With the need for extra safety protocols, open stock and communal options should be replaced with more individually packaged choices. An increase in availability of individually packaged snack and food options will provide an additional layer of protection and offer Jacksonville employees a larger variety of on-site options.

Cleaning and Sanitation Practices

Cleaning and sanitation practices will need to become both more specific and all encompassing. Countertop surfaces and high touch areas should be cleaned and disinfected more thoroughly and frequently. Jacksonville employees should be able to easily access disinfecting wipes in the break room as well as hand sanitizer and hand-washing stations, which should be kept well-stocked.

Your Service Provider’s Policies

Break room providers operate differently. It is important to make sure your provider follows strict health and safety protocols. In addition to communicating clearly and openly about their COVID-19 response, they should share information about their warehouse protocols. Delivery drivers should perform the following procedures at every visit.

  • wear masks and use a fresh pair of gloves or wash their hands.
  • be aware and respectful of new processes your company has put into place to ensure your employees’ well-being. 
  • thoroughly clean all equipment and high contact areas at the end of every call.

Technology’s Advantages

State-of-the-art technology can already be found providing many benefits in many of today’s workplaces. Begin by understanding which technologies your refreshment provider offers and encourage your Jacksonville employees to use them. Employees may be able to use their smart phone to pay for vending machine or micro-market purchases, report issues, request new items, and see your provider’s COVID-19 policies.

Employee Buy-in

Lastly, employees need to understand and commit to creating a safe workplace while employers need to consistently provide up-to-date communication to ensure new policies and procedures are being followed. Employers can post reminders and tips, especially in shared areas, and encourage and recognize employee’s efforts to follow new procedures. It’s up to each employee to create a workplace that keeps their co-workers healthy.

Do you need help exploring available options to create a safe and usable post COVID-19 break room or updating your current refreshment menu? The Vending Station can help with that and more. For more information about our extensive snack, beverage, and fresh food options, please call us at (407) 891.7632. We look forward to hearing from you.

Break Room Benefits in Jacksonville

Break Room Benefits in Jacksonville

Break Room Benefits in Jacksonville

A Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville 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.
Break Room Benefits in Jacksonville

Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville 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.

The Vending Station 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 (407) 891.7632. We are here to help restart the Jacksonville economy one break room at a time.

New Opportunity in Orlando Break Rooms

Break Rooms in Orlando Offer a New Opportunity

New Opportunity in Orlando Break Rooms

Workplace break rooms are more important than ever. As Orlando businesses reopen with new procedures designed to ensure employee safety amidst ongoing concerns about COVID-19, the break room experience must also shift. While break rooms continue to be a convenient benefit for employees, they are also an opportunity to limit outside influences on controlled office environments.

Micro-markets and vending machines are two refreshment services that provide a safer way for employees to access fresh foods, snacks, and beverages. Items offered in micro-markets and vending machines are individually wrapped in secure packaging for a quick and easy grab-and-go experience. Break rooms with vending machines or micro-markets also provide cashless payment options, limiting contact even further. 

New Opportunity in Orlando Break Rooms

By providing Orlando employees with plenty of delicious and nutritious options in the break room, employers are able to satisfy their employees during the workday, limiting their potential exposure to viruses by reducing trips off-site. Rather than feeling like this is a difficult obstacle to overcome, our industry is here to support your business.

Last week, members of the refreshment services industry came together to send a heartfelt and reassuring message to customers throughout the nation. The message (shot in isolation from each person’s home or business) is an inspiring 2-minute video. The takeaway from this video is clear: break room service providers are here to support companies as they transition toward a safer working environment.

The Vending Station is here to support you. We are also responding appropriately to our state’s COVID-19 re-opening schedules and guidelines and have adopted even stricter health and safety measures. Delivery drivers are following social distancing guidelines and are washing their hands or putting on a fresh pair of gloves before each visit. They are also sanitizing all contact surfaces and high touch areas at the end of every service call. 

Our goal is to leave break rooms cleaner than we found them. Additionally, we have implemented social distancing policies in our offices and distribution centers and are closely monitoring our employees’ health.

Whether your organization wants to upgrade your refreshment menu or add new services, we will create a customized solution that meets your unique needs. For more information about our services or safety policies and procedures, please contact us at (407) 891.7632.

Break Room Design in Orlando

Three Break Room Topics to Consider in Orlando

Break Room Design in Orlando

Although the idea of offering an employee break room with a selection of refreshments has been around for years, providing a space for relaxation, conversation and snacks or meals is even more important now. Break rooms are more than a room; they can help employees relieve stress, brainstorm, boost productivity and build community.

When considering if your Orlando break room fits the needs of your employees, it can be helpful to consider the following topics: what your employees need or want, the physical space and the menu.

Needs and Wants

When considering the answer to this question, the first place to go is to your employees. Not only will it help clarify what your employees like to do when they aren’t at their desks, but it will help create a list of food and beverages preferences, allergies and dietary requirements. Asking for employee input lets them know that their opinion matters and that they are appreciated.

The Physical Space

Whether your Orlando break room is large or small, it needs to be welcoming. There should be a variety of comfortable seating arrangements that support different activities including eating meals, reading, collaborative work, having fun and even napping. 

Break Room Design in Orlando

The vibe or energy of the room, created by colors, textures, lighting, seating arrangements, layout, plants and organization, also contributes to the experience employees will have when walking into the room. A great example comes from Google’s campus where “diner booths, it turns out, can work better than traditional conference rooms.”

In addition to tables and chairs for meals, access to microwaves, a sink, a refrigerator and coffee machines as well as supplies like utensils, plates and napkins will encourage employees to leave their workstations and have meals together and build relationships.

The Menu

One of the primary reasons Orlando employees go off-site during the workday is to grab a bite to eat or a coffee, which can cause a decrease in productivity. With that in mind, the importance of offering the right combination of snacks, cold beverages, fresh food and coffee service stands out even more.

In addition to offering traditional snacks and beverages, better-for-you options are a must. Healthy choices such as fresh food, fruits and veggies, yogurt, granola bars, nuts, filtered water and flavored sparkling water minimizes food comas, avoids dehydration and keeps employees feeling their best.

The last section of the menu should reflect coffee and tea service. It might include a combination of espresso-based drinks, nationally known brands, local roasters and a variety of hot teas. Don’t forget to include creamers, non-dairy creamers, sugar and sugar-free options. 

Once the three sections listed above have been considered, the final break room design and menu should reflect both your Orlando organization’s needs and the refreshments your employees enjoy. Not sure where to begin? The Vending Station can help. 

For more information about updating your break room or creating a new, customized menu, please contact us at (407) 891.7632.

vending options in orlando and central florida

NAMA Presents Growth Opportunities to the Vending Industry

vending options in orlando and central florida

Growth is a common theme found throughout the vending industry in 2019. This past April, 4,500 convenience services professionals converged at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV for The NAMA Show 2019. The show is an annual event sponsored by the National Automatic Merchandising Association (NAMA), a group representing the $25 billion convenience service industry in the United States. 

With over 360 exhibitors including some of the world’s most popular brands, 100 new exhibitors and 125 new products for visitors to learn about, there was something for everyone to explore. Advancements in vending machines, coffee service, micro-markets, and pantry services were on display. Vending service providers, customers and industry providers gathered to see and learn about up and coming consumer and industry trends including new business and career growth strategies, educational opportunities, new products and brands, healthy choices, going green and new technologies. 

Two key areas with a large amount of growth at the show were healthy products and new technology trends and solutions.

Healthy is still in.

Even after the organizers increased the size of the footprint for the healthy or better-for-you pavilion to 3,300 square-feet, the pavilion was sold out. It’s clear that healthy snacks and beverages continue to represent an area with growth potential.  

Manufacturers are listening to consumers and developing new products to meet consumer demand. Vending providers are also listening to their customers. In addition to healthy products with attributes from responsibly sourced to lower calories to reduced sugar and non-GMO, new approaches to eating healthier were also on display. Those trends included on-the-go nutrition, functional choices that support a specific lifestyle, occasion-based eating, and providing fresh fruit at the office.

Technology keeps evolving.

And the vending and refreshment industry is no different. Innovations in technology are improving both the front-end (consumer) and back-end (vending provider) experiences. For example, social media communities, personalized web-portals, and live chat enable back-and-forth communication between consumer and vending provider. To appeal to consumers, vending providers offer self-checkout technology that processes quick, cashless payments and fast, seamless product delivery systems. 

Vending providers, on the other hand, look for back-office management tools that will improve warehouse organization and order fulfillment. Innovative systems on display at the 2019 NAMA Show included technology that optimized up-to-the-minute sales data, maximized delivery routes; increased efficiencies, and minimized out-of-stock occurrences.

Whether an organization would like to update their current break room vending machine menu or create a customized micro-market or pantry service, The Vending Station can help. We provide our Orlando and Central Florida customers with the newest technologies and healthy snack, beverage, and fresh food choices to create a space that could only be called “the ultimate break room.” For more information about our refreshment services or to schedule a taste test, please call us at (407) 891.7632. We look forward to hearing from you.