As part of the Nationwide building Society's initiative to connect office-based administration staff with the front of house high-street retail environment they enlisted us to help upgrade large spaces in their headquarter buildings based in Swindon. The concept of bringing key design cues from retail into the administration estate was first executed in 2018 to help administration staff feel more connected with the high street brand and feel part of the same team.
A broad project team was established including architects, project managers, NBS's design team and us, to advise and add value to the furniture side of things. This project was the second main site to see the transformation based on the original Nationwide House project, which we successfully completed in 2018. Although the design concepts and space planning strategies had previously been established we had to take that model and apply it to different space with teams of people working in different departments.
Working with NBS to finalise floor layouts was key, we helped to overcome some issues previously experienced at the last site - touchdown/hot desk areas which are designed to be used as and when, by anybody and then left clear - were being taken over by teams who were sat close to these areas. These teams had spread out into the touchdown areas meaning that these areas were being reduced as the teams wouldn't clear them at the end of the day, so these touchdown desks were getting permanently occupied. Hot desk employees were complaining that there wasn't adequate desking for them. We worked with the NBS design team to find a solution this involved moving the touchdown areas away from teams and close to collaboration spaces and issuing each touchdown desk with a red screen to denote is usage. This was a radically different approach, which we are pleased to report has been working well.