As recently as last year, 80 percent of American offices had embraced the failed open office concept as a way to increase productivity, enable more frequent and better communication, and create an improved office environment.
Unfortunately for offices who invested in these changes, studies show that entirely open offices create a number of downsides that often lead to unhappy staff and lowered productivity.
Open plan office research showed that almost two-thirds of high-performance employees claim that they need more quiet at work to focus.
As a result, office style phone booths have come to the rescue, but not all brands use quality, durable materials. Furthermore, not all suppliers even manufacture booths that have properly working doors or adequate sound dampening.
A New Work Environment & The Rising Need for Office Phone Pods
The problems created by open offices affect not only productivity but also employee health.
Those working in open offices take over 60 percent more sick days than their counterparts in other office configurations. Faced with this issue, many American offices looked for other ideas around which to design their workspaces.
Over the past year, an alternative concept has grown popular with companies and employees alike. The agile office represents an evolution in design that incorporates the best qualities of the traditional, secluded office with that of the open office.
An important aspect of most agile office concepts lies in creating spaces for individual staff to escape noise and social situations so they can concentrate on their work.
Instead of hiring contractors to rebuild offices, most companies have chosen to install office pods.
Office pods are portable workspaces designed for one person. They create private spaces for intense tasks or for taking phone calls. But just like other products created for office use, there is a wide range of quality.
Some products provide good quality for the money they cost, while others do not. Office managers should especially beware of choosing cheaper products that may not offer the same soundproof features as those priced slightly higher.
Cheaper Office Pods Lack Convenience
Besides creating a secluded area for staff to concentrate and boost productivity, the most important reason to get an an office booth lies in their convenience.
Most businesses live on a very narrow margin. Every expenditure has to go toward items that improve the bottom line. Few things are more frustrating than spending thousands of dollars on equipment that fails to live up to even the simplest standards of use.
One issue with cheap "affordable" office phone booths lies in the quality of their door. If the design and construction of the door are lacking, no other features matter. Some brands of office phone pods have doors with complicated designs people can't figure out, or they don't open all the way.
Even worse, some don't even really provide a door - the opening is less than half that of a conventional booth, requiring that the occupant turn sideways to enter.
Let’s hope that these users don't have any files, computers, or other work materials to take in with them.
Well constructed office pods have another feature that cheaper products lack. When making important, sensitive phone calls, privacy is paramount. Unfortunately, many cheaper products only wall their pod with upholstery or very poorly manufactured hard walls.
In this case, thinner and poorly constructed walls mean occupants will not enjoy the same level of privacy or noise blocking ability.
Conversely, the Zenbooth office pod has 3.5-inch thick surface walls designed to protect the occupant’s conversation and secure him or her from distracting noises outside.
Finally, only Zenbooth's design contains an element that can save on electricity costs. The skylight allows either indoor, overhead or natural light to stream into the workspace. Although the occupant can use the light inside, the skylight adds another useful option to enhance its convenience.
When spending thousands of dollars, the customer has the right to expect an office booth that meets his or her's most basic needs.
Cheap Office Pods Claim to Be Portable, But Often Are Not
Ideally, office pods should combine functionality with portability. They should always be relatively easy to assemble in the desired place, but also to move when necessary.
This means that the best office pods are constructed of durable, yet lightweight materials. Not every product provides this important combination.
Some companies promise portability but deliver a booth at an unmovable 1100 pounds. Relocation means someone will have to disassemble the pod entirely.
By comparison, the Zenbooth weighs less than 500 pounds. A team of people can move a Zenbooth safely with no need to take it apart. Zenbooth’s enhanced portability comes in part from the use of light and sturdy high-grade aluminum.
More durable and more portable represent the combination most customers look for in an office phone booth.
Cheaper Products Are Worse For the Environment
Some companies place a premium on purchasing products designed to be eco-friendly. This means paying close attention to the sourcing of raw materials and valuing a manufacturing processes that puts less strain on the environment. Many phone booths on the market have little or no eco-friendly materials in use.
On the other hand, Zenbooth sources and manufactures its office pods from local suppliers near its San Francisco, Bay Area headquarters. This reduces the pollution from transporting materials from overseas.
Zenbooth also uses recycled materials as often as possible to lower each product’s impact on the environment. All nonrecycled wood comes from forests in California near the Zenbooth facility.
Most Low Cost Office Pods Are Not Made in the USA
For many Americans, it matters where the products they buy are manufactured. Now more companies and individuals look for the Made in the USA label.
Although a number of manufacturers have returned production to the United States, some have not embraced the trend. Cheaper options are made in Portugal, Finland, France, and elsewhere.
Zenbooth has made a commitment to not only assemble its products in California but also source as many raw materials as possible from areas close to its facility.
Using all American workers and resources pleases most of their customers while also making Zenbooth much more eco-friendly than other brands relying on long distance shipping.
Contact Us Today
When choosing the office pod that your staff needs, don’t fall for the allure of an "affordable office phone booth" that's too good to be true.
Make sure that you have the right product for your office and your employees. You want an office booth that is safe, convenient to use and eliminates outside sound and distractions. Look for one that is truly portable and made in the United States for a reasonable and competitive price.
Reach out today to talk to our expert, professional, and friendly staff. We are eager to help your employees work more productively and remain happier at their jobs.
Thanks for reading.