In March 2019, Irwell Valley Homes was looking to consolidate its three existing Greater Manchester offices and bring colleagues together as one team in a flexible, collaborative workspace to help achieve a new agile way of working as well as reduce operating costs and minimise its impact on the environment.
Irwell Valley Homes provides affordable homes and services to thousands of people across Greater Manchester. At the same time as moving offices, it was significantly changing its customer service approach, introducing new teams and a new IT system, making it an exciting but particularly busy period of change for the organisation. The company needed a safe pair of hands to manage the fit out of the new office space within the tight frames being required. Following a competitive tender process, ADT Workplace was selected to manage the fit out and delivery of the design, which was created by designer Jenny Hill, from design practice, ingo interiors.
Understanding that overall cost was of high importance to Irwell Valley Homes, during the tender process ADT Workplace was able to demonstrate how the organisation could make significant cost savings without compromising on the design or quality of delivery. By applying its expertise to review product cost positioning and selecting alternatives where appropriate, and applying small tweaks or re-specifying high ticket items, the team was able to deliver the same design and quality but at almost 15% less cost than the original budget.
With colleagues previously working in silos, Irwell Valley Homes required a new environment which would facilitate and promote better collaboration across teams, breaking down barriers so that colleagues are able to work together effectively to achieve the best possible outcomes for the organisation’s customers. Recognising that most jobs can be increasingly completed from anywhere and the need to be sat at a specified desk in an office from 9am-5pm is becoming less necessary, Irwell Valley Homes wanted to create a variety of different workspaces suited to different tasks, so colleagues can choose how and where they work, based on what they are doing.
As well as areas for quiet and concentrated working, and confidential work, the new office- which was designed by Jenny Hill at ingo interiors – provides a range of flexible meeting spaces including small meeting rooms, breakout and collaboration areas, places to work on special projects and café style areas. There are also useful drop-in spaces for colleagues working on the move who need a base for short a space of time, and flexible multipurpose areas which can be configured differently based on how colleagues want to use them.
Delivering business benefits
Commenting on the new office, Claire Griffiths, Executive Director of Assets, Development and Growth at Irwell Valley Homes said: “We were really impressed with ADT Workplace’s can-do approach. We knew two months was a tight turn around for such a big project but the team worked at pace without compromising on the quality or finish.
“We can safely say that ADT Workplace and ingo interiors have delivered a flexible, modern and collaborative workspace which fits our needs perfectly. The end result more than exceeded our expectations, with every aspect of the brief executed to an extremely high standard. Importantly, it has also reduced our overall footprint by over 15,000 square foot and is expected to deliver £1.3million savings to our operating costs over the next three years.”
Clever space planning
ADT Workplace worked closely with ingo interiors to assist with the furniture procurement and fit out of the new space. Commenting on the project, Jenny Hill at ingo interiors ltd said: “ingo interiors was approached by Irwell Valley Homes to help find a new building and design a workspace which could help the organisation consolidate its existing offices into one main hub, embracing a new agile and flexible working culture.
“Using clever space planning, and reducing the number of desks and introducing specific task-based furniture choices, we were able to create a multi-functional, adaptable workplace that will help improve productivity as well as attract and retain staff. We specified finishes with beautiful textures and comforting tones to create a welcoming environment for the team, which will help improve the mindset of employees and instil a sense of calm in the team whilst at work.
“Ultimately, Irwell Valley Homes’ commitment to staff wellbeing will not only benefit them but will also help them provide a better service for their customers. The project was a pleasure to work on.”