Improving Workflow through Effective Kitchen Design – Part 2


Great workflow stems from intentional design decisions that make the most out of a kitchen space.

Last week, we discussed the importance of the concept of workflow in kitchen design and remodeling, along with three ways to improve it. Through careful consideration of the floor plan as a whole, creatively using space to direct foot traffic, and applying the idea of the “work triangle” to the kitchen design, we can increase the functionality of the kitchen and make preparing and cooking meals quicker and easier. Today, we’ll be looking at three more points that home designers and remodelers should consider when working with homeowners to design a kitchen that makes the most out of the concept of workflow!

4. Great Trashcan Placement

One thing that should not be overlooked in the kitchen design process is the placement of the trashcan. This can have major consequences not only on the aesthetics but also on the workflow in the space. Many like to place their receptacle under the sink, but this is not ideal especially if the homeowner likes to entertain guests. The sink should be used for cleanup, it is true, but during a party or family gathering, you don’t want to create a situation where the homeowner is trying to wash dishes, but is being asked every so often to move to let a guest throw away their trash. One solution to offer is pullout bins in the cabinet system. This setup frees up potential congestion in the cleanup station and allows a dedicated station for trash collection!

5. Creating Self-Contained Snack Areas Away from Work Zones

It’s natural that some members of the homeowner’s family might want to munch on a snack before dinner or heading out to practice. However, this can create a potential workflow problem depending on the placement of the refrigerator in the kitchen design. In many designs, the refrigerator is bound to be close to the meal prep zone. If possible, you can try to have the fridge next to a set of cabinets to create a sort of snacking area within the meal prep zone. If this is not possible, a dedicated beverage center with an under-counter refrigerator might be the best option if you’re looking to fully optimize workflow in the design.

6. Choosing Appliances that Do More

Nowadays, there seem to be more and more kitchen appliances that are necessary for daily home life. However, more than likely, you’re working with limited counter space and need to find a way to include all modern amenities within that space. Luckily, manufacturers have been figuring out ways for their appliances to do more, saving valuable counter space and offering greater utility and flexibility. Refrigerators with built-in Keurig coffee makers, ovens with multiple baking modes, convection and steam ovens… there are a ton of options out there and you can work with the homeowner to choose a combination of kitchen appliances that complement their home lifestyle while still adhering to the principle of great workflow!

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