Coffee is important for any office, large or small. It can be the difference between a super productive team, or one that’s falling asleep behind their computers.
That being said, it’s important to find the right one for your office. There are many things to think about, for example how much coffee you need to make, cleaning and maintenance, durability, convenience, all of which we cover in this article.
Supply and Demand
First thing’s first when considering what sort of coffee maker would be best for your office, how much coffee does it need to produce?
Let’s put forward a couple of examples. If you’re wanting to put a coffee maker in a communal space where lots of employees will use it, then you’re going to need a coffee maker with a large capacity. Maybe something like an urn, or a large carafe coffee maker.
If you’re thinking of getting a coffee maker for a small office, where only a few people are going to be using it, you have more options. You can get a single serve coffee maker, which uses pods, an espresso machine, or a carafe coffee maker.
Something you might want to consider is how big the water reservoir is. You don’t want to be constantly filling up the machine with water, that’s just going to be a pain.
Bottom line, answer these questions. How much coffee is your office going to get through? Are you going to be hosting client meetings where you’ll need a large amount of coffee?
Once you’ve answered these questions, consider the water reservoir capacity. An average cup of coffee is between 7-9oz. Some water reservoirs go up to 90oz, some are only 30oz.
Think About Convenience
It’s a busy day. Things are happening. You, and the rest of the office have a lot of work to get through. Do you want to be using a coffee maker that requires you to go through a lot of steps, or do you just want to push a button?
Single Serve Coffee Maker
A single serve coffee maker is definitely the most convenient per individual. All you have to do is place a pod into the compartment, and press a button. Voila, you have a coffee.
That being said, they are absolutely detrimental to the environment with these little capsules taking 500 years to break down! So if you’re a company that’s environmentally conscious, give this serious consideration.
Even the creator of the coffee pod in the company Keurig, John Sylvan, regrets popularising the single serve capsules.
There are ecofriendly ways to use these machines, for example using a reusable capsule, where you load it up with ground coffee instead of buying it with coffee already inside. They’re more cost efficient and better for the environment.
Moving on, there are very convenient coffee makers out there that brew masses amounts of coffee, relatively quickly. An automatic drip/pour over coffee maker produces large carafes of coffee in minutes.
A carafe can be fully brewed and left on the machine to keep warm. The next person who wants a coffee simply has to pour the coffee from the carafe into their cup, and when it’s time to brew again, this can be done in minutes.
Not only would I argue that this method is more convenient for larger offices, but the quality of the coffee is much better too. Using pre-ground coffee, or even better, freshly ground coffee, will improve the flavour of your coffee dramatically.
This is something that is always overlooked, but very quickly becomes one of the most important parts of maintaining your coffee maker.
You cannot avoid maintaining and cleaning your coffee maker, especially if you want it to stand the test of time, and produce delicious coffee all day, every day.
Look into how much cleaning you will need to do with each coffee maker you’re looking at. Some come with auto clean features, but you’ll still need to clean the outside parts, like the drip tray, water reservoir, and brew basket.
Without the auto clean features, you’ll have to descale the coffee maker manually which normally involves some cleaning solution and a couple of brew cycles.
It’s nothing major, but it’s still a reality of owning a coffee maker, and should be taken into consideration when buying your machine.
This leads nicely onto durability. The easiest way to recognise how durable your potential coffee maker will be is by looking at the warranty.
A brand that offers a one year warranty doesn’t have as much faith in it’s coffee maker than a brand that offers three years does. The longer the warranty, the more trust the brand has in it’s build quality.
The build materials used are also a key indicator in how long your machine will last. Stainless steel is always a strong, durable, and reliable material. Try and avoid plastic. It’s not too bad on the outside as a casing, but you definitely don’t want plastic where your coffee is being brewed.
Types of Coffee Makers
I’ll go through a couple of types of coffee makers and how they brew your coffee, so you have a brief understanding of what each one does.
Single Serve Coffee Maker
Does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s a coffee maker that brews one cup at a time, using pods/capusles that you insert into the compartment.
These are great for small offices that aren’t going to be consuming large amounts of coffee. They’ll require cleaning out at the end of each day, or else you run the risk of a pod exploding in the machine, which is messy… believe me.
Automatic Pour Over/Drip Coffee Maker
These guys brew a carafe of coffee. A pour over coffee maker brews coffee slightly different than a drip coffee maker, with the former producing slightly better quality coffee.
Super convenient for offices that are going to be consuming large quantities of coffee. Normally come with a thermal carafe, or a warming plate, where both will keep your coffee hot for hours after brewing.
For quality coffee these machines are the best. They also give you a lot of customizability with regards to what beverages you can make, especially if it comes with a milk frother, which they normally do.
Great for lattes, cappuccinos, flat whites, and any other speciality coffee drinks you can think of.
Downside is that they require the most amount of work when brewing your coffee, and the clean up is more after every use.
From my experience, these machines are great for clients. If you have a member of the team that can make a delicious coffee for each client with an espresso machine, it’s a super nice touch.
A coffee urn is like a massive percolator. It brews a large amount of coffee, sometimes as much as a hundred cups, and keeps it warm for a long time.
These are ideal for conferences or other types of events, where people can come and help themselves, quickly and conveniently, to a cup of coffee.
The quality of coffee isn’t amazing, but the convenience per person is unparalleled.
There are so many coffee machines out there now that I find it hard to believe there isn’t the perfect coffee maker out there for every office.
Keep in mind the points that I’ve highlighted in this article, and you should be able to narrow down which coffee maker would be ideal for your office.
Interesting Related Article: “