In order to help employees gain creativity, focus, and happiness; Microsoft has built technology-enabled treehouse workspaces at its Redmond campus. These nature-inspired workspaces are designed to serve as meeting spaces and a more casual work environment.
Designed by renowned builder Pete Nelson, the treehouse is one of the three new branch-based meeting spaces, and is part of a larger new system of tech-embedded outdoor districts that are further connected to buildings around the campus. This way the company is aiming to empower its employees to work in new and creative ways without feeling bored.
These outdoor spaces include two enclosed treehouses and one elevated roost called the ‘Crow’s Nest’. Nestled twelve feet off the ground, the treehouse features charred-wood walls and a soaring ceiling with a round skylight with cinnamon-colored shingles and a gingerbread-house feel.
While many companies are opting the concept of green indoor spaces, Microsoft has its own 500-acre campus nestled in the woods to let the employees work in the lap of nature. The outdoor meeting space is Microsoft’s long-ago envisioned connection to the environment. With this nature-inspired workspace, the company wants to provide opportunities for workers to connect with nature while maintaining the reliable connectivity of a traditional office.
Furthermore, an outdoor Wi-Fi network provides a good internet connection. Every bench is weatherproof and contains a hatch that reveals electricity sources. The indoor cafeteria is extended outside, with a barbecue restaurant built into a shipping container.
This outdoor workspace also has rust-proof rocking chairs and an outdoor gas fireplace to attract an after-work crowd. Two of the three treehouses which are accessible to all employees, are open now. The third one is a sheltered lounge space, which will be ready later this year.