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Virtual World | February 2015

Injecting life

GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare office moved to their new, ´smart´ office designed by Space Matrix Design for a smarter way of working.
In the world of design, it is interesting to note how the word ´new´ acquires multiple meanings. The brand new office of GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare not only incorporates unique design elements, it also transforms the work culture of the company, adding concepts like collaboration, flexibility and energy to increase productivity and performance. The office space can be defined on the lines of a smart setup, replete with top-notch technology, and a design sensibility that revolves around the brand´s core philosophy.

Design inspiration
GSK´s new office is located in One Horizon Center, the tallest corporate building on Gurgaon´s Golf Course Road. Apart from having a strategic location as an advantage, the interior design of the space conceptualized by the team at Space Matrix Design is a true marriage of technology and cutting-edge design.

´The idea of this smart office originated from an internal study which indicated that 85% of the assets in any office were dedicated to stationed cubicles. Interestingly only 35% of work related activities were happening in these areas. This new office, to me, is a symbol of our collective efforts for continuous growth, collaboration beyond boundaries and reaching new heights,´ says Zubair Ahmed, Managing Director, GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare.

According to the designers, ´The brief for the new office was to create a collaborative environment. The company aimed to reinforce a culture of trust and integrity, encourage transparency and open communication and thereby get the workspace future-ready to attract younger talent. The design needed to follow GSK´s global ´Smart Working´ guidelines that promote an open and flexible work culture.´

Heart of the matter
The total area of 70,000 sq ft is spread across two floor plates of 35,000 sq ft each. The design predominantly follows the human anatomy - the heart, vein, brain and skin. The concentric circle shape in GSK´s logo forms the heart of the design, which is the reception area that bustles with energy. The vein that forms the second layer is for the central circulation through the access controlled spaces for movement and connectivity that inspires conversations. The third layer is the brain - the smart working meeting rooms, quiet rooms and small relaxed huddle areas for ideating. The skin comprises workstations that give rise to collaboration, co-creation and execution.

The designers share, ´The smart design comprises flexible seating and a cabin-less work set-up. The employees can choose to work from a variety of spaces such as shared table, team table, informal meeting space, etc.´

For a seamless integration the design embraces the technology needed to support ´planned collaboration´. All meeting rooms are enabled with the latest technology for remote collaboration and live meetings.

Intelligent detailing
A lot of detailed planning has gone into creating this smart office. The full-sized glass walls not only offer breathtaking views of the surroundings but also allow natural light to stream in. Colours have been used selectively to create an impact on the mood of employees. ´The interiors are dressed up in colours of the company´s 'Winning Formula' in wall graphics and solids with the heartbeat,´ disclosed the designers. Similarly the choice of furniture is in keeping with comfort of the user and the overall look of the space.

Another important aspect is the intelligent integration of green features. The designers said, ´Planning of the space has been done in a way that the available natural light is well utilised to minimise energy wastage. Additionally occupancy sensors, daylight sensors and zonal controls (for HVAC) have been installed to further cut down any wastage.´ The office design will ensure decreased use of paper and energy with energy saving devices installed.

The new GSK office has smart design in every sense of the terms, but what makes it smarter is the experience it offers to its employees.

What´s HOT
Creating workspaces that are employee friendly and giving them the flexibility to change the settings of the primary workspace

What´s NOT?
Following international trends like Activity Based Working (ABW) without assessing their effectiveness for how the business functions.

Total Area: 70,000 sq feet
Text: Kanishka Ramchandani
Photos: Esha Daftari

Contact
Space Matrix Design Consultants,
59 Okhla Industrial Estate,
Phase - III, New Delhi 110 020.
Tel: 011-4737 3000.
E-mail: newdelhi@spacematrix.com

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