Office Pods and Booths, Meeting Rooms for the Open Office

Office Pods and booths are popular right now, as we become more flexible in the way we work, it is important to provide solutions that can adapt to the evolving workspace, provide a multitude of working environments for all types of users, and provide a modular architectural system to move with the changing strategies.

As this trend in flexible working grows, collaboration and open space become a central part of office design. However, noise in the office can be distracting and can be a key cause of stress in the workplace. Although we become accustomed to background noises, we have a strong tendency to focus our attention on conversations, even when we are not part of the discussions.  When working in an open-plan office, excess chat and discussion can be a problem for those who are trying to concentrate on work independently or as part of a team, leading to irritation, stress, low motivation, and reduced performance. 

Here we are looking at the office pod and work booth more closely, and take you through some of the advantages and disadvantages, as well as some great examples of what value they can bring to your space.

What is the Difference between an Office Pod and Booth?

Meeting rooms are the staple multi-function necessity, perhaps after desk space and maybe the coffee point! But the market has lately seen an upsurge in the use of meeting pods – both have their advantages and disadvantages, but what is right for you?

As always, the best option for you depends entirely on what you’re going to use it for. For total privacy, an enclosed pod may be most suitable, or for larger gatherings, you might want to stick to an enclosed meeting space. But if you find your meeting rooms are regularly utilized by single occupants who just want some quiet time, or if you are looking to lower costs with the ability to move it when you want to, a modular booth is a serious contender.

Modular architecture is a huge trend

Modular, adaptable and moveable architecture pieces Are proving increasingly relevant in today’s workspaces. Why?

Because it allows for flexibility and adaptability in the workplace – allowing changes for the evolving workplace – whether the company is growing, or just adapting their strategy, which we’ve seen a lot of the last 18 months.

Introducing office pods to an open plan office environment creates a micro-environment within the wider ecosystem of work settings. This is more cost-effective than having to partition your existing office with walls to create cellular offices and meeting rooms. 

Connectivity and Tech Integration

Tech-enabled solutions have gained even more momentum in the last couple of years, so having booths and pods able to incorporate this is a priority for many top firms globally.

But there are also some amazing branding opportunities, through the endless customizations, For example, HMRC’s new office space in Newcastle who have included landscape graphics, Haines Watts with city skylines, and Gymshark, who have incorporated their brand and company ethos into their designs, using our Railway Carriages.

"I absolutely love these pods, I think they're brilliant. And they're really well-built, they're absolutely solid.
These meeting pods are just absolutely brilliant and again, zoomable, you can zoom into them. The sound is contained with them. They've got light, power, to be honest, it's the sort of place I would come for a quick meeting or to do a bit of work on my own. The fact that you can just zoom in from wherever as well is just brilliant." - Ben Francis, CEO of Gymshark

Office Pods and Booths for Inclusivity

Modern office design has evolved to become more comfortable, more practical and more productive, but equality, diversity and accessibility have also become far more important. We wrote about Designing for inclusivity in a recent article where you can read more about this. Accessibility is about removing barriers from a workplace or work function so that everyone has equal access to the location, tools and tasks required to perform their role. The design or layout of a building, it's lighting, noise level, signage and parking are examples of factors that may present barriers for people of different abilities. An inclusive workplace is one that values individual differences in the workforce and makes them feel welcome and accepted. With our Residence Connect Office Pods inclusivity is at the core, and we have a specialised ADA/DDA version to cater for the equitable workplace. As well as this, our office booths are customizable and can cater for all, as can be seen in this recent project with Birmingham University which included custom Railway Carriage Booths which were designed for use by wheelchair users.

Sustainable Pod and Booth Design

As a final thought on Office pods and booths, we wanted to summarise how these support a workspace into being more environmentally conscious and sustainable. Modular construction generates less waste than a traditionally built room, in the case of Verandas meeting rooms, all components are available red-list compliant and EU Ecolabel certified, meaning the environmental impact is minimal.

As part of our commitment to the environment and sustainable design, we're very pleased to be able to confirm that six of our key products, including our Pods and Booths, now have Declare labels. This assures transparency in how they are sourced and the materials used in making them, as well as giving design specialists peace of mind that they’re making responsible sourcing decisions. In addition to this,  all our products with Declare labels are also "LBC Red List Approved', meaning they have been approved as compliance pathways for the International WELL Building Standard v1 Feature 26 for Enhanced Material Safety and WELL v2 Feature X13 Enhanced Material Precaution. These features take a precautionary approach to hazards by emphasizing healthy material selection to minimize risks.

There are so many aspects to consider when choosing a great workplace pod, from accessibility to sustainability to giving people the best video conferencing experience. But what is more suitable for your workspace; quiet working pod or collaborative booth? We have wrapped it all up in a handy guide so you can focus on what’s important for your project in this Office Pods and Booths Guide