Meet the team who pur­pose­fully de­signed their own open of­fice

Gulf News - - Special Report - BY JUMANA KHAMIS Staff Re­porter

For the Dubai team at Wil­son As­so­ci­ates (WA), de­sign­ing their own open­plan of­fice was a way to cre­ate a space that is both func­tional and col­lab­o­ra­tive — as well as in­spir­ing.

The in­te­rior de­sign com­pany moved to a 5,000 square foot of­fice in the De­sign District in Oc­to­ber 2017, en­sur­ing that their new work­ing space re­flected their own creative aes­thetic and ap­proach. The com­pany sup­ports a team of 33 em­ploy­ees.

Talk­ing to Gulf News, Hilda Im­pey, prin­ci­pal de­signer at WA, pointed out that be­yond the com­mon goals of an open­plan of­fice such as col­lab­o­ra­tion and break­ing up hierarchy, the team fo­cused on cre­at­ing a “home” for clients, sup­pli­ers, staff, and all of our guests who visit.

How it was done

Start­ing at the first con­cept sketch to the fi­nal space, the team re­fined and cu­rated all pieces, de­tails, ma­te­ri­als and func­tions through­out the de­sign process.

“Each item in this of­fice is care­fully se­lected to cre­ate the over­all bal­ance be­tween a home and an of­fice, a func­tional yet in­spi­ra­tional place,” said Im­pey. ■

She pointed out that they col­lab­o­rated with work­place de­sign ex­perts to the new space catered to the di­verse work styles of the em­ploy­ees.

“We also have a wellness cor­ner out­fit­ted with Techn­o­gym equip­ment, ex­er­cise balls that bounce around as chairs, and plants are scat­tered through­out the of­fice to fur­ther en­hance the healthy vibe,” ex­plained Im­pey.

When tack­ling the com­mon com­plaints that come with an open-plan of­fice, Julie Djo­han, se­nior de­signer at WA, told Gulf News that elim­i­nat­ing hierarchy was no is­sue at the of­fice. “Every­one is made to feel equal in our of­fice, no mat­ter where they sit. We have a strong team­work bond amongst every­one, in­clud­ing non-de­sign­ers who will help get in­volved when needed to hit a dead­line,” she said. ■

Quiet zones

The open-plan of­fice also al­lows every­one to be vis­i­ble to one an­other, en­abling a good sense of team­work and in­spir­ing open com­mu­ni­ca­tion and the con­stant shar­ing of thoughts, ex­plained Djo­han.

“The only dis­ad­van­tage I can think of is per­haps over­shar­ing in some ways. But if de­signed well, they are mi­nor is­sues in an open-plan of­fice,” she said.

To ad­dress the pri­vacy is­sue, it also pro­vides a quiet room for peo­ple to “park them­selves” and work in a quiet nook if they need to escape into an­other zone.

rise in email ex­changes de­spite be­ing in an open of­fice, says the study

Cour­tesy: San­ti­ago Este­ban

Hilda Im­pey Julie Djo­han

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.