We created a new office in record time for Höganäs Kakel
When Höganäs Kakel was to transform an empty premises into an attractive and efficient office environment in a short time, they had two choices: they could either do everything themselves in parallel with their daily work, or let AJ Products Project Design team handle the entire process from planning to moving day. The company chose to hand everything over to us and was rewarded with a complete solution. In just eleven weeks we solved everything from developing interior design ideas to putting the furniture in place. The solution was comfortable, efficient and well within budget.
Swedish company Höganäs Kakel is synonymous with high-quality tiles and is part of the Ricchetti Group, one of Europe's market leaders in construction ceramics. When the company was to move its office in two stages, first from their historic facility in Ekeby in south-west Sweden to a rented premises and then to a new property of their own in nearby Helsingborg, they were faced with a challenge: "How can we create a good office environment in temporary premises with a limited budget that we can then take with us and further develop when our new, permanent office is completed?"
Faced with that dilemma, they turned to us at AJ with the hope of getting help with the interior design solution as well as with all the practicalities, such as choosing suitable furniture and making sure that the right deliveries arrived in the right place at the right time.
An empty space with four walls needed to be transformed into an inviting and well-functioning office. The assignment included furniture and fittings for all the different functions in a modern office: a welcoming reception area, individual office workspaces, a conference room, several smaller meeting rooms and a shared break room, as well as an archive and printer room.
The workflowOur team had several initial conversations with the client to get a picture of their needs and wishes. Based on that knowledge, our interior designer then produced idea sketches with a choice of floor plans, various furniture options and 3D interior plans that provided clear visuals of the finished solution. When the customer was satisfied with both the proposal and the estimates, we made sure that everything was ordered, delivered and assembled on site - completely according to schedule.
Four challenges ...
1. Time. We had less than three months to sketch out proposals for a solution and to order, deliver and put together the furniture and all other fittings if we were to make it within the desired time.
2. The floor plan. Previously, the staff had their own individual offices, which they enjoyed. There were few walls in the new space, which meant they must adapt to working together in an open environment.
3. The budget. Nothing was brought over from the old office, which is why a lot of new furniture had to be included in our proposal. In addition to meeting both financial and ergonomic requirements, the new interior would also have to conform to CC Höganäs’ corporate design.
4. The two-stage rocket. The company was only planning to stay in the new premises for about two years, after which they would move on to permanent premises in another part of Helsingborg. Therefore, it was important to choose furniture that could be easily moved and could form the basis of the interior design at the next stage as well.
... and four solutions
1. Through a well-coordinated project team and an effective supply chain, we were able to produce all the different furniture that the customer wanted quickly. In this respect, the wide selection of furniture stocked in our own warehouse for fast standard delivery was especially valuable.
2. The various departments (sales, customer service, finance, etc.) were grouped separately in the open space but still close enough to other functions to simplify communication. Acoustic desk and floor screens created privacy around each workstation to promote well-being and peace of mind.
3. Our office furniture ranges are not only characterised by high quality and modern design but are also very affordable: a combination that appealed greatly to the customer.
4. The breadth and quality of our office range makes it easy to find the right product in terms of shape, colour and size. This also makes it easy to create a uniform interior design style, which can be further developed over time.
Increased team spirit
Smaller office spaces were transformed into group rooms. This was a practical solution so that employees could take individual calls when necessary, hold video meetings and collaborate in groups without disturbing anyone else.
In addition to no longer having their own individual offices, the design of the breakroom was the biggest change for the staff. Previously, they sat at smaller tables with their closest colleagues and rarely had contact with the others. In line with the new openness, we proposed a single, long lunch table with space for all employees. This created the opportunity for increased contact between co-workers and better team spirit.
We won the assignment because we understood the company's challenge, presented a proposal that fulfilled all wishes and could deliver quickly – within the limits of time and budget available. We managed to take advantage of the premises' features and create an open office, while at the same time providing space for the staff's need for privacy. In addition, we responded to the management's wish for more dialogue between the departments in order to create a more efficient way of working.
The result speaks for itself. Everyone is satisfied with both the interior design in general and the quality of the products. The office's modern style conveys the atmosphere Höganäs Kakel wants customers and suppliers to experience when they visit. In addition, the solution can easily be moved and further developed when it's time for the next stage.