Great Eastern Life corporate office
When Great Eastern first considered transforming their corporate workspace in the CBD HQ, moving half of the corporate team into a tired suburban building recently vacated by GE agents was not the natural inclination. A real estate portfolio review was undertaken by Workplace Revolution to review occupancy strategies across GE owned and rented locations for the next decade—and it advocated for the reuse and rejuvenation of a nondescript Changi Road edifice that had previously escaped much scrutiny, to be the site of GE’s new work culture. A one-floor pilot project we completed in 2019 in the building was the litmus test for leading GE’s work transformation. The positive reviews of the pilot fit-out from users and visitors convinced GE management about overhauling the rest of the building to create a new decentralised corporate campus based on agile work, desk sharing and increased collaboration. The design phase for this second stage started in April 2020 during the ‘circuit breaker’, or Covid lockdown, in Singapore. This lockdown period in which most of the country had to work from home served to shatter many long-established assumptions and work practices for GE and helped to lay the path for a bolder, more agile environment for GE corporate teams. The completed project includes five levels of agile work floors, an open work lounge for GE visitors on the ground floor, upgraded toilets, new staff showers and other wellness amenities, and a rooftop terrace for communal activities. Already existing in the building is a staff cafe and training rooms (not part of project scope).
As GE’s corporate teams have previously worked in traditional offices with limited collaboration spaces, the Changi Road project brief was to support the business change into flexible and collaborative ways of working. We knew that the work floors had to provide a bold, immersive, and active environment that immediately signals to users of the paradigm shift, so we grouped the most dynamic activities and settings around the building core, wrapping the centre of the floor plate with the work cafe, touchdown tables, collaboration rooms and nooks, in an activated loop. This creates a strong entry experience and a powerful invitation to use alternative work settings as part of the daily work journey. Employees enter the floor into the active zone on their way to their individual neighbourhoods, where desks are bookable and shared. We took inspiration from Great Eastern’s brand ethos of being ‘the company that understands your life’ and wanted to express the positive connections that the company has strengthened in their people through culture, values, and training. We named the design concept ‘Bands of Life’--- signifying the personal connections, social ties, and bonds between team members. ‘Bands of Life’ became the prevalent design motif through the space. applied on various spatial elements as lines and ribbons to create the sense of being connected to the next space. We took the GE brand colours of red and blue but made it soft in pastel tones. A writing board ribbon runs through the touchdown zone, also serving as a screen divider from the team neighbourhoods. The look and feel is lively and active around the shared zone, to generate the sense of movement and buzz. Spaces link to each other through lines on ceiling and floors. We used a lot of layering and textures to create a highly tactile space, inviting users to sense the environment through touch. In this way, we encourage users to relate to the interior space intimately. The building is undergoing Greenmark accreditation whilst interior finishes, fittings and specifications have been selected based on related sustainable ratings and certificates.
Singaporean Multinational Bank
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