Fuze: Building A Modern Collaborative Office
Enjoying the space you work and interact in is an increasingly important requirement for employers to attract and retain their superstar talents. We reveal how Fuze renovated its head office into a futuristic productive working environmentJermaine Haughton
Understanding that good office design can make the difference between the success of your company, Fuze, a specialist in international cloud-based communications, collaborated with designers Area Sq this year to transform Fuze’s 7,500 sq ft head office into an agile working space that will house up to 70 people.
Based in Reading, the office is the home of Fuze’s UK business operations, housing its developers, sales and pre-sales teams, technical consultants and research and development staff.
With the aim of office space that enables better ways for individuals and teams to communicate and collaborate, and cater to all the needs of Fuze’s eclectic mix of employees, designers produced an array of areas, carefully designed to assist the diverse spectrum of work-based activities.
The office includes a number of desk-based, desk-sharing, and collaborative non-desk working areas, including a designated huddle zone, a think tank (with write-on walls), rooms with sit-stand desks, an impressive boardroom for senior staff meetings and an open breakout area for all to enjoy.
Supporting both traditional and more modern ways of working, each of these workspaces intend to encourage teams to converse and share ideas, and feel equipped to problem solve and lead projects in a comfortable and productive environment.
Samantha House, project designer, explained that the range of workspaces offered by Fuze’s HQ reflects the changing perception of how office design stimulates employee productivity and performance.
“Your workplace is no longer a place where you go to work,” she said. “As we continue to spend an increasing amount of time at our place of work, people are wanting a well-designed space that stimulates productivity, supports interaction and encourages flexibility.
“An efficient workplace will be designed around the people using it and will encourage collaboration, support communication and help to create bump points for employees to connect and brainstorm together.”
Acting as the blueprint for all future Fuze workspaces, including its five offices across Europe and its US operation in Boston, the Reading office renovation recognises the needs of the younger, tech-savvy generation of workers by ensuring the latest and most up-to-date technology is available to staff.
Fuze conducted research on 5,000 workers (and 2,500 teenagers aged between 15-18) across Britain and Europe to come closer to understanding what the app- generation want in terms of their office space and the tech that their office provides. The study found that 72% of these young people agree that “having the latest technology will be important when they start working”.
House said that the opinions of existing employees were sought to assess which resources they felt was most necessary to complete their tasks successfully.
“In order to understand Fuze’s requirements, we were given employee-type profiles, which enabled us to analyse what spaces were needed for the various profiles,” she said. “Based on this information, we created different pockets of space throughout the workplace so everyone would have an area they felt comfortable working in, whether that was a traditional desk or a sofa.”
Fitted with wall panels, soft seating and exposed surfaces, the colours from the company logo are carefully integrated into the design - identifying the fresh and vibrant look with the Fuze brand. And ultimately the firm hopes it will help attract and retain the best employees.
House said: “With such a fast-paced workforce it was important for us to design a workplace that the staff would be proud of. We achieved this by understanding Fuze’s brand values and injecting their personality into the space, in turn creating a modern, flexible workplace that would help attract and retain staff for them now and in the future.”