Office Kitchens not Just for Getting Coffee

April 7, 2011 ( - New survey results from Staples Advantage, the business-to-business division of Staples, Inc., suggest that having a fully stocked kitchen, with food, coffee and amenities, can lead to more content and productive employees.

The survey, which polled U.S. office workers at nearly 200 businesses of all sizes, found that 73% said a well-stocked kitchen would make them happier at work, while 57% indicated that kitchen amenities could lead to a more productive workforce.  

The survey suggests more than 85 million people leave the office routinely to get coffee. Respondents estimated each trip taking 20 to 40 minutes, equating to more than two billion minutes each day, or 10.6 billion hours per year, of lost productivity.    

“Our recent survey found that 72% viewed the office kitchen as more than just a place to get coffee. To them, it represents a place for impromptu meetings, as well as a space to help keep energy levels high. This provides an opportunity for employers to create a workplace kitchen that boosts their workforce’s productivity and camaraderie,” said Lisa Hamblet, vice president for the facility solutions and services business of Staples Advantage, in a press release.  

Nearly 80% of respondents said it was important to get away from their desks from time to time to take small breaks in order to stay focused. Many workers hope to find snacks, paper goods and cutlery in their office kitchen that they can use throughout the day.   

More than 85% said they would want healthy snacks and beverages added to their office kitchen. In addition, according to the press release, employees hope to find a variety of products, including coffee cups (75%), forks/knives/spoons (72%), as well as plates and other paper products (65%) stocked by their company.  

Protecting the environment was noted as a priority for those surveyed, and 96% would like to see recycling bins in the office.