In May this year our interior design team set off for Clerkenwell design week in London for inspiration and to keep up to date with the industry's latest developments. Clerkenwell is home to more creative businesses and architects per square mile than anywhere else on the planet, making it truly one of the most important design hubs in the world. To celebrate this rich and diverse community, Clerkenwell Design Week creates a showcase of leading UK and international brands and companies, presented in a series of showroom events, exhibitions and special installations that take place across the area.
You don't always have to travel far for inspiration, as our designers discovered at Clerkenwell when they were introduced to some of the team behind the interior design and space planning at the Royal Bank of Scotland. Just around the corner from Amos beech (from a national perspective), the world class headquarters for RBS are located, Scotland's largest company and the fifth biggest bank worldwide. The team were invited to come and have a look at their recently revamped spaces. Obviously, that offer was accepted enthusiastically and today we went to have a look.
RBS is located on a site that is named Gogarburn. The remains that were discovered in 2003 near the site suggest the site was used for agriculture in medieval times. The architects for the RBS Gogarburn development were Scottish based Michael Laird Architects and London based RHWL Architects. The concept was that of a business community with offices, restaurant, shops, leisure facilities, nursery and a training/conference centre. The main building at Gogarburn therefore has a clear social/community focus and circulation pattern.
Technology equipped meeting areas throughout the building are used to encourage collaboration with other business partners around the world as well as being an area where colleagues can “meet, focus, huddle, present or chat” depending on the project in hand.
“Scrum” areas are situated within departments where ideas, processes and improvements can be discussed robustly and advanced by using a simple step by step process allowing them to “fail faster, more of the time” – an expression that demonstrates their committal to “discover, design, develop & test” anything they create, before it is launched internally or externally.
Working environments play a key role in the attraction and retention of staff and it was great to see how RBS implemented this at their Gogarburn site in Edinburgh!