When Scotland's only tyre manufacturer asked us to draft a plan for their office refurbishment and fit out in Dundee, the team here at Amos Beech set out to transform the 40 year old building.

Office fit out and refurbishment for Michelin Dundee

The Dundee plant has been transformed into a “state-of-the-art factory under the five-year investment programme. The Dundee factory opened its doors 43 years ago it is now the city's biggest industrial employer, with just 1000 staff. It manufactures more than seven million car tyres every year. The 'Bâtiment 10' or 'Building 10' hosts 70 office staff and every factory around the world has a 'Building 10' with office accommodation for similar office tasks.

The brief for this Dundee office refurbishment project

The need for this office refurbishment and fit out project in Dundee was clear from the outset. The building was old, uninspiring and even a depressing place to work. For a company of this stature, refurbishment was long overdue. 

Michelin Dundee is Michelin’s best-in-class and is now topping the tables in efficiency and quality. Dundee was the first first Michelin factory in the world to embrace wind energy with two wind turbine generators helping to reduce environmental impact and energy bills.

It's standing attracts high profile visitors from across the world and needs an interior that you expect from a company like Michelin. 

Also graduates were keen to start their career at Michelin, but the company struggled to keep them on board. Michelin offers excellent training programs and career perspectives, but many talent left after a short period of time and when asked they mentioned the working environment was less then inspiring to say the least. You don't want that as an innovative and global company. After all “A better way forward” is the Michelin way: 

The interior design and Lay-Out

The long rectangular building with cellular offices along corridors was to be transformed into a more open plan space with organic shapes. The desks were positioned off set from the walls and in the final design the wave desks were shaped nicely around the circular meeting pods.

Furniture specification

At Michelin 20 million euros are invested each year to develop new solutions for workstation ergonomics. Amos Beech have always been at the forefront of innovative seating and desking solutions and for this project sit-stand desking from Samuel Bruce, originally from Dundee was specified.

The days that working days were an important source for people's exercise are long gone for most people, especially for those that work in offices. Sedentary working applies to in between 4 and 6 hours per day in an average office and in total you are talking about 9 and 11 hours a day! A sit stand desk will bring in more variety in working posture during the day and reduces health risks. It also gives the flexibility in adjustment an international workforce like Michelin needs. 

Changing between sitting and standing increases concentration and output which is essential for a best-in-class tyre manufacturing plant.

Office fit out project management

The office refurbishment was completed over two phases. We started on the ground floor and the initial works included the removal of part of the 1st floor to open up a more impressive staircase entrance reception area. A new staircase was manufactured to the designers specifications and all internal doors were replaced.

As the project was underway it was decided to build an entrance vestibule in front of the reception and despite the already tight time frame, this had to be completed within the timescales allowed.

Walls were opened up and replaced with glazed partitions to allow light to flood through the interior. These new glass partitions have been subtly branded with the iconic Bibendum and other Michelin marketing images.

The overall interior design scheme takes full cognisance of the Michelin brand and uses the approved branding colour palette to establish the Michelin identity whilst retaining a sense of belonging for the individuals who work in the space.

When the second phase started, we had to remove from the building a large safe that had been built in originally. Heavy lifting equipment and careful health and safety planning allowed this to happen without delays or damage to property or person.

As part of the overall scheme, all external single glazed windows were replaced by new double glazed units to improve the thermal efficiencies of the building and the heating and ventilations system was similarly upgraded to meet with the current standards.

The end result is a refreshing and modern interior which is already making a huge difference to the first impressions given to visitors on arrival. Going forward the Michelin management team are confident that the investment will reap rewards in terms of productivity and staff satisfaction.