With today’s technology-infused workplace, businesses are evolving and adapting at an increasingly fast pace. This pushes the design of space into a new reality — one that provides a unique combination of space types, a flexible user-controlled workspace, and an effective approach to change, all while strategically positioning themselves for recruiting the best talent through their unconventional corporate culture.
Driven to support their forward-thinking endeavors, we are implementing workplace strategies to meet the needs of today’s leading technology companies:
1. BALANCING CONCENTRATION AND COLLABORATION
We understand the need for areas of stimulation, socialization, and focus. Balancing the requirements of openness and enclosure, we are creating environments that provide options for work settings and empower individuals to select from a variety of locations where they can work most effectively. To provide these levels of collaboration and concentration, companies are seeking a comprehensive set of spaces — cafes, lounges, game areas, focus rooms, and huddle rooms — that provide the benefit of quiet concentration or team project focus. With the increasing density of workplaces, there is the need for more options in space types, from individual phone booths to open gathering spaces.
2. FLEXIBILITY FOR USER CONTROL
This new balance in work environment includes the ability to change things around to make a work setting function for a formal meeting or a group brainstorm. In essence, to operate the environment to suit the current need.
To support the need for flexibility in the open work areas we are providing highly adjustable and mobile furniture such as sit to stand tables, and mobile work tables that can be arranged in numerous ways providing a high degree of mobility and user control in team work zones. Our carefully selected task-driven furnishings are highly adaptable and easy to maneuver to promote the individual’s control over their work space. We recently completed GoDaddy’s new Silicon Valley outpost — complete with height-adjustable desks, portable work tables, movable seating pods, and media tools in a culture-rich environment.
3. MODULARITY AND ADAPTABILITY
With technology companies’ fast-changing needs for growth, expansion, and change, we are implementing strategies for embedded adaptability to allow for a quick response to unanticipated change. We do this by planning for what the space could likely become in the future — workstations transitioning to enclosed space, enclosed space becoming work stations, and lounge areas densifying with workstations. To achieve this goal, we strategically plan in a modular fashion the locations for floor cores for data/electrical, overhead lighting, and mechanical systems to best suit any of these conditions.
For a recent tech client in San Carlos, DES designed a floor core pattern that can easily accommodate future growth and densification without the need for rewiring or other significant upgrades. Additional workstations can replace lounge areas to create space for more team members and vice versa. Allowing for long-term flexibility, a standard module for space planning and planned infrastructure can accommodate changes in headcount, technology, and aesthetics, providing a solution to constantly evolving space needs and enabling the quick conversions of spaces.
4. AMENITY RICH AND WELLNESS FOCUSED
With the intensely competitive market for top talent, companies are aiming to create a dynamic, lively culture as their differentiator. To support their creative community, companies are investing substantially in amenities for their staff and seamlessly incorporating these types of spaces throughout their workplace. Even with budget-constrained TI projects, companies are concentrating their investment predominantly in the social spaces.
On an in-progress renovation project for our Mountain View technology client, there was a clear desire to create a healthy environment with scientifically-backed features specifically targeted to support wellness. To turn a windowless warehouse into an amazing daylight environment, we literally raised up the roof and created clerestories around an elevated mezzanine space “nest” designed for community use and interaction.
With the recently completed GoDaddy project, areas for recreation and down-time were carefully integrated into a seamless experience between work and play — enhancing productivity and creating an animated environment that drives their talented engineers in pushing new technology platforms forward.