Planning undertaken by Kinnarps

The team managing the project for IUCN, including architects AGPS, were invited to tour Kinnarps factories in Sweden to ensure that the company’s approach to sustainable manufacturing met with the new building’s stringent environmental requirements.

Kinnarps and IUCN management worked closely together, as one project team, to develop and implement a workspace analysis and online employee survey and to install ‘test workspaces’ aimed at reaching consensus among the people who would be affected by the move, without alienating those that would be left behind in the old building.

Particular areas of concern, highlighted by the staff survey and workspace analysis, were that noise might be an issue in the new open plan office-scape and that the move away from cellular working would result in reduced facilities for meetings and making confidential phone calls.  It also transpired that many members of staff suffered from RSI and back problems, potentially arising from poor design of their existing workspaces and non-adjustable seating.

Three different show suites were installed in IUCN’s original building, to demonstrate the options available.  The show suites were tested though use as real workstations and throughout the test period a second survey was conducted to establish which chairs, desks and storage units IUCN’s employees preferred.

The space planning was an ongoing process, with the team meeting regularly via video conferencing, to avoid the travel carbon footprint that would have arisen from too many international meetings.