KPMG is the latest professional services firm to go officeless and paperless, aided by the obligingly ovoid Rogers Stirk Harbour tower at Barangaroo – and aided by Davenport Campbell who have brought some innovating thinking to the agile model.
May 3rd, 2017
KPMG is a major financial services firm with 2500 employees in Sydney alone. But their businesses were operating in a siloed manner out of enclosed offices despite the changing commercial landscape. CEO, Martin Blake, knew things had to change and with Barangaroo coming out of the ground just across the road, he saw his opportunity.
The new Rogers Stirk Harbour tower would be ideal for creating a new workplace, which would serve to trigger the necessary cultural change. The ovoid building had a grand promenade down the middle with stairs connecting all levels, making it ideal for an ‘agile’ work environment with clearly differentiated but connected zones. A carefully devised change management programme helped convince staff they didn’t need offices, while also serving to induct staff into the new way of working along with unearthing unexpected shortcomings. For example, it led architects, Davenport Campbell, to introduce transition zones to clearly separate the focus zones for private work from the collaboration zones for teamwork. And, in the quest for a paperless office, it made them realise that the focus booths needed more space and two screens. Between the two extremes are a host of different kinds of workspaces and settings.
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