Do Water Cooler Chats Still Happen?

Do Water Cooler Chats Still Happen?

With ever-shifting work environments, especially due to events over the last few years, coupled with constant changes between a physical versus a virtual workspace, we pose the question – do water cooler conversations still take place? If so, are they of benefit?

First, let’s define what water cooler talk is. Essentially, it’s the informal conversations between co-workers that typically occur spontaneously in the workspace. It generally involves casual discussions on non-work topics which employees engage in during free moments throughout their workday.*

Next, we turn to whether chats at the water cooler, be they in person or in cyberspace, are of benefit to an organisation and its employees.

According to research, it would seem water cooler chats do benefit both.

  • They contribute significantly to building an inclusive company culture as they create opportunities for employees to bond over shared interests and experiences.*
  • Whereas the shift to remote work transcended the physical office space, virtual platforms gave rise to the ability to host casual conversations, giving remote teams a chance to build working relationships in an informal setting – around a virtual water cooler.*
  • Various studies showed organisations who facilitated virtual water cooler talk resulted in a significant improvement to employee well-being, a feeling of being included and a positive outlook in general.*

If you too are interested in installing a water cooler, creating a positive and convivial atmosphere for your employees, co-workers or for the children and staff at your school, chat to us at AquAid.

Make the most of our more than 24-years’ experience, our wide range of high-quality water dispensers and twenty branch strong team, all who provide the best in both products and service.

*source: from a blog at Cerkl

Skipping Lunch while at Work – Part II

Skipping Lunch while at Work – Part II

In Part I about skipping lunch while working, we were all about bad nutrition and productivity and skipping lunch. In this session, the debate continues with mentions of the (for some) dreaded broccoli, superfoods and eating well at work.

Two journalists battled it out; one had spent time working in France, where lunch was always taken away from one’s desk. The other said that she would far rather power through her lunch break and have her sandwich at her desk as it would give her more time after work to spend with her family.

Having lunch away from your desk is the way to go, according to studies at the University of California. Taking the time out of your work environment gives your brain a breather and allows your brain to ‘power up’ and go back to work refreshed and ready for the next haul. Sitting at your desk doesn’t allow for that brain refresh. I would imagine it’s similar to taking a power nap, which does work.


*In the nineties, it was all about organic food. Then along came the concept of ‘superfoods’, a term used to describe foods that are supposedly really good for you. But it turned out to be more of a re-branding exercise for otherwise mundane supermarket produce, like berries for example.  And if you ask a scientist, the term superfood means something completely different. It’s used in academia to refer to calorie-dense food, like chocolate (aha!).


Apparently, the little green forest trees (as I like to call them), have been shown to help the immune system to clean harmful bacteria from the lungs. A compound found in the vegetable is now being trialled as a treatment for people with lung disease.

Eating well

When surveyed by researchers from Nottingham University, staff at the UK’s National Health Service said they felt they had a responsibility to set an example for healthy eating at work. But the American Journal of Public Health found that for healthy eating habits at work to take any effect, workers’ families also had to get on board. What people eat at work is linked to their overall lifestyles and attitudes to nutrition.

I must say I do like the can-do attitude of the people at the NHS. Overall, I think it is important, as your working day takes up a lot of your hours awake (bar those power naps), to make sure that the powers-that-be in your work environment focus on your well-being too. Are there kitchen facilities at your workplace?

Is there a water cooler? Instant Tap? A hot water drinks dispenser?

Some type of sip and feast designated area?

If not, perhaps it’s time to have a chat with your employer and point out the clear benefits between nutrition, good hydration and productivity.

source*: an article in Quartz.

source**: an article in the New Scientist

Earth Day – Planet vs. Plastics

Earth Day – Planet vs. Plastics

At AquAid we are keenly aware of the impact using plastic has in our industry, to our customers and on our environment. This Earth Day we felt it important to reiterate our ongoing commitment in seeking solutions and alternatives to reduce waste, minimise our carbon footprint and increase the sustainable provision of our water and water products to our customers.

Potential long-term options?

  1. Paper cups/cones

Paper cups may seem like an obvious alternative, but they are not. As paper is porous, all cups contain a lining which means that they cannot easily be recycled.  Unfortunately, although few people may be aware of this, if you are paying to recycle paper cups, these lined cups actually contaminate the recycling batch they go into.

There are cones available without a plastic lining, but they will only hold water for a matter of seconds before it will start seeping through and leak onto surfaces or on the floor. Whilst these are useful from an environmental perspective, they are less useful from a hydration perspective; the reason organisations have a water dispenser in the first place.

Paper cups cost around 50% more than plastic, with cones priced slightly lower.

  1. Plastic bottles

There is a place for reusable plastic bottles, however, we need to be aware that a plastic bottle weighs at least 30 times more than does a plastic cup. This then means that using plastic bottles is adding plastic weight and volume rather than reducing it. Even if you re-use a plastic bottle (which some people will re-use 30 times, but others much less so) it has to be borne in mind that the bottle needs to be cleaned which has its own environmental impact.

  1. Use bio-degradable/compostable material

The idea of using bio-degradable plastic is very appealing at first as people picture it literally turning into dust.  The problem is that in order for the plastic to compost, it needs to be kept in very specific circumstances only achievable in an industrial composting environment. Not only are there very few such facilities in the UK, there are also no nationwide collection schemes in place for them.  If bio-degradable cups end up in landfill they can be more harmful to the environment than normal plastic cups, as is indicated in various reports and case studies from authorities in the field*.  Added to this, bio-degradable plastic is made from corn starch – which again brings with it a significant impact on the environment. As a final point, bio-degradable plastic is considerably more expensive than regular plastic.

The solution

Because of the focus directed at the issue of single use cups, we may be forgetting the difference between litter and recycling. Plastic on its own is not an issue – unrecycled plastic is. Bearing this in mind, we believe there is a viable solution, one which will be of benefit to not only ourselves and our customers, but also to our environment.

Recycling plastic cups

Upon consultation with a number of recycling authorities, in particular BIFFA, a leading integrated waste management company, we’ve established as follows:

  • The cups that AquAid supply are made of a single type of plastic. The benefit of this is that easy to recycle and a valuable resource that can be repurposed and resold.
  • Our plastic cups are easily recycled if placed in a dry mixed recycling (DMR) bin. These are bins which take cans, paper, cardboard and plastic. Not only will the material placed in a DMR be recycled, but DMR bins cheaper to have emptied than a normal waste bin.

We believe that we have established a practical, cost effective and viable solution to using our drinking cups and are inviting our customers to contact their local recycling companies to confirm that they offer the dry mixed recycling bins (DMR), to assist with the recycling of not only plastic cups, but also the many other recyclable items found in offices up and down the country.

* sources: articles in The Guardian; UN News

Water Cooler Trivia – Version Two Zero Two Four

Water Cooler Trivia – Version Two Zero Two Four

We’ve given quite a bit of attention to British trivia over the years for good reason. Trivia is interesting, fun, it keeps your brain active and just as important, it provides you with a wealth of interesting knowledge you can impart to your colleagues, workmates, clients and customers whenever you head off to replenish your drinking water at your water cooler station.

In the spirit of keeping with this tradition, here are a few updated trivia titbits for your entertainment.


In 2021, the Smallest House in Britain, located in Conwy, North Wales, also known as Quay House, received a new addition to its living space for the first time in 400 years – a sofa. We don’t like to boast, but we’re sure we could fit one of our tabletop water coolers or Instant Taps in the House.


Mind the gap. The distance between Britain and America is widening by one and a half inches a year as upwelling in the Mid-Atlantic Ridge pushes tectonic plates apart.


Science & Nature

A blue whale can hold up to 5,000kgs of water in its mouth.  As much as select of our range of water coolers have the capability to constantly supply refreshing drinking water to large organisations, we regret we’re not able to provide blue whale water coolers. Also … saltwater.

I think it’s safe to assume that here at AquAid, we like trivia. It may be as we understand the connection between cognitive function and how drinking water keeps one in tiptop trivia retaining knowledge mode – aside from being able to perform better throughout the working day of course – almost as important!

Sources: House Beautiful Mail Online Blue Whale

Why Water Coolers are Vital to Work Well-Being

Why Water Coolers are Vital to Work Well-Being

Today it is increasingly common to find one if not more water cooler stations in the workplace. Aside from the more obvious – making sure everyone has access to drinking water – there are several positives that not only benefit everyone but the organisation as a whole.

Why? Because keeping employees hydrated creates a set of positive outcomes, all of benefit to the entire workplace.

Crucial for physical well-being. *Dehydration can lead to an array of physical discomforts, including fatigue, muscle cramps and headaches. In particularly demanding work environments, such as construction sites or manufacturing facilities, the risk of heat-related illnesses significantly rises when employees are not adequately hydrated.

Promoting hydration at work is not just about comfort but also about ensuring the safety and well-being of your employees. By providing access to clean drinking water and encouraging regular hydration breaks, employers can reduce the risk of on-the-job accidents and promote a healthier work environment.

Increased productivity and cognitive function. Two primary negatives of dehydration are reduced cognitive ability which leads to reduced productivity. Providing your workforce easy access to a water replenishment station is the simplest and most direct route to ensuring good hydration habits.

Morale and mood boosting. Irritability, mood swings and increased stress levels are often indicators of dehydration.  This can result in decreased job satisfaction and an inharmonious work environment, all which can severely affect productivity and well-being. By encouraging hydration, employers can contribute towards the improved moral and mood boosting of every individual at the workplace.

It therefore makes sense to make use of a well-established organisation with decades of experience in the supply and installation of high-quality water coolers. Be that mainsfed, bottled water coolers, hot water boilers and bottled water deliveries, AquAid are proud to be of service to more than 34,000 customers across the U.K.

*source – from an article at Corporate Wellness Magazine

World Water Day – What Can We Do?

World Water Day – What Can We Do?

The theme for World Water Day, 22 March 2024, is ‘Water for Peace’, which focuses on the critical role water plays in the stability and prosperity of the world.

According to UN-Water, ‘when water is scarce or polluted, or when people have unequal or no access, tensions can rise between communities and countries. 

More than three billion people worldwide depend on water that crosses national borders. Yet, out of 153 countries that share rivers, lakes and aquifers with their neighbours, only 24 countries report having cooperation agreements for all their shared water. 

By working together to balance everyone’s human rights and needs, water can be a stabilising force and a catalyst for sustainable development.’

The good news is that even if you are not directly involved in this year’s World Water Day, as an AquAid customer, you are helping with the continued implementation of sustainable water projects which help provide potable water, water to grow crops and water for productive use for thousands of communities in water poor regions across Africa. These safe water resources, often built in areas accessed by multiple communities, can help to minimise conflict which may arise from insufficient and unsafe water sources.

With each mains water cooler installation and every bottle of water purchased, we donate a portion of that revenue to the charities we have supported for over twenty-five years: Christian Aid, since 1998 and The Africa Trust – an AquAid founded charity – since 2010.

If you are not yet an AquAid customer but appreciate how we work, we will be more than happy to help introduce you to our range of water dispensers, bottled water coolers, hot water boilers and Instant Taps offering hot, cool or chilled water.