Pods — freestanding, fully-enclosed, occupiable, space-dividing products normally used in indoor spaces for privacy, conferencing, and other purposes — are an increasingly popular and innovative furniture option in open office workplace design. They create work space alternatives for individuals seeking flexibility and variety in choosing a setting best suited to their work style and task at hand. In support of their growing application, the Business & Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association (BIFMA) has created a voluntary, safety and performance guideline for pods.
The “BIFMA Pods-2020” guidance was developed by BIFMA’s Subcommittee for Building Codes over the past eight months. Forty-five subcommittee and industry stakeholders conducted reviews of the North American guide to ensure that the requirements were sound and safety for the user was considered. It was finalized and approved on September 18, 2020.
“BIFMA Pods-2020” covers a variety of product criteria including acoustics, electrical, emissions, ventilation, fire safety, stability, seismic, and other considerations. Copies of the new guide are available from BIFMA immediately. This and other standards may be ordered online.
BIFMA is a not-for-profit trade association serving business and institutional furniture manufacturers. Since 1973, the organization has developed furniture safety, durability, and sustainability standards that ensure product performance and inspire confidence. BIFMA educates the stakeholder community on the importance and proper use of these standards; provides industry statistics and forecasts to members and the public; and advocates for regulatory conditions that enhance value and foster innovation.
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