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Google London Office. Image CC credit Marcin Wichary

Workplace Week looks at agile working cultures

More than 40 workplace management professionals took part in visits to three innovative workplaces on Monday, the first day of Workplace Week, organised by AWA to raise money for Children in Need, whilst celebrating innovation in the workplace.

Children-In-Need-MIFM-Nov14Technology firm Google opened the doors of its facility on St Giles High Street, while professional services firm PWC showcased the recent refurbishment of its Embankment Place premises and asset management firm Invesco revealed how the firm’s new agile working policy is changing the culture of the organisation in its new London Wall workplace.

Agile and flexible working was a theme throughout the three visits.

At Google, a mixture of open plan, collaborative space and quiet space support a range of working styles allowing people to choose where they want to work depending on their current activities. Wellbeing is also a theme with a heavily-subsidised massage suite, a 24/7 gym, healthy food and a dog policy to encourage staff to bring their pets to work.

The newly-refurbished nine-storey PWC building accommodates over 4,000 staff in 3,200 workplaces with 85 per cent occupancy. Hotelling is mandatory for anyone under partner status, with people using kiosks to book and indicate vacant workstations, soon to be available remotely. A welcome desk on each floor is there to resolve any difficulties. The superb facilities for clients and internal meetings, together with the provision of varied break out spaces support the agile working culture, while the IT enabled people to work where they wanted –  the firm is currently migrating from laptops to supplied  ipads and iphones or users’ own devices.

At Invesco, visitors saw the first implementation of agile working in the asset management sector which occurred when Invesco moved from Finsbury Square to the sixth floor of an iconic building on London Wall but with more staff than initially planned. The shared social space in the centre of the building provides the coffee base for everyone in the office and acts as a hub for all and a place to meet or bump into colleagues more easily. What made the facility stand out to the delegates was the separation of the workplaces from the collaborative space and the fantastic light throughout the building.


This year’s Workplace Week includes:

  • a programme of 90 minute ‘working workplace’ tours involving some of the UK’s most innovative workplaces including Google, Mintel, Innocent Drinks, BDO, Edelman, Lloyds of London, Guardian Newspapers, CBI, Invesco, Prostate Cancer, and PWC Embankment Place
  • a one-day convention at PWC’s More London office near London Bridge on Thursday 6 November: The Work/place Revolution….taking human performance to new levels
  • the Workplace Week Reception 1730-2030 after the convention on Thursday
  • a selection of inspirational Fringe events hosted by Herman Miller, Kinnarps and Humanscale

To book your place to the tours and the convention. Sign up at workplaceweek.com

About Sarah OBeirne


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