Designing the office for a global leader in data management and data analytics software.
When we designed the new offices for ID Business Solutions (IDBS) on the sixth and seventh floors of their building in Surrey, the emphasis was on creating an environment that attracted top talent and supported different ways of working. The company wanted it to represent the brand, but also provide a space that people wanted to be in, in a world where hybrid working is an option, so that’s what the team at Maris set out to do.
Designing for the people
Under the guidance of designer, Caitriona Hughes, we created spaces that supported collaboration as well as quiet, independent working, environments that were inspiring, flexible and convivial with options for different types of work, times of day and personality types.
Cait says: “It was amazing working with people who cared so much. They understood that in their industry there are a lot of talented people who are naturally introverted and are very happy to work from home. They thought carefully about how to encourage them back to the office. So yes, while there’s a buzzy, hub and collaborative space, they also wanted quieter, calmer spaces that made it less overwhelming to go back to the office, especially post-Covid, when even the most extroverted individuals were much more anxious and aware of personal space.”
Creating a neighbourhood
While it was all open plan with no designated desks, the concept was based on a neighbourhood where you had access to different types of space. Amongst the key features, we included:
- Project tables where people could sit if wanted to get away from their desks and work somewhere different for a while.
- High back solutions for people who wanted to be on their laptops or talk one-to-one in a a quieter setting.
- Individual phone booths for private calls and smaller meetings.
- Larger hub spaces for interconnected departments.
- A connected reception, cafe and tea point.
Two floors – one space
How the space was used was essential. As a brand new, Cat A fit-out with large windows, the main structure was ideal, but IDBS were concerned about being set over two floors. They didn’t want that to create a sense of separation between teams.
As a result, we used design to make the staircase a connecting rather than dividing feature, placing it in the centre of the space rather than at the side. As soon as you came into the reception area, meeting suite and cafe on the seventh floor, you could take the staircase down into hub on the sixth floor where it was surrounded by workspaces. As a result, it was almost like a column, connecting the spaces vertically.
We also utilised the staircase practically much as possible, forming tiered seating underneath it on one side, and storage on the other, thereby making it work as hard as possible and integrating it into the whole office experience.
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