When renovation and renewal projects were carried out in the past, expensive furniture often ended up in a skip. Today, companies consciously choose alternatives that can later be modernised, remodelled or recycled.
The advertising agency Bob Helsinki and the digital agency Robot Helsinki merged and moved to a new office. This meant an increase in organisational cultures, the number of people, and the range of jobs performed on the premises. Having the two agencies share a new office space makes it easier for the cultures to coalesce.
Bob the Robot’s new office is located at Kasarmitori square in central Helsinki. The bright, spacious and homelike space draws you in. It does not look like a traditional office space, nor can you really call it an ordinary open-plan office. It gives you the sense that this is what the workspace will probably look like in many other offices in the future.
Anu Igoni, Art Director and Founding Partner, joins us to explain Bob the Robot’s new business premises solution. Igoni has good things to say about the new office, but not without reservations. The location is one of the big advantages. The company’s previous office in Sörnäinen was difficult to access for people coming from the west. Kasarmitori square is more “democratic”, being easy to access by public transport from all directions.
“Bob has always either had its own building or something else that is a bit special. We would have liked to have a building of our own, but in central Helsinki, you sometimes have to settle for compromises. Since we could not have our own building, we chose premises that come with a large terrace. We thought it would be nice in the summer”.
“Sofas are our preferred workstations. To many people here, the desk is just a place where trivial things pile up,” says Kari Eilola from his seat on a sofa, with a notebook computer on his lap. When his mobile phone signals an incoming call with a muted ring, he leaves the area to take the call.
Lasse Kangasmaa has ended up at a desk with his notebook computer for a moment. His eyes are fixed on a wall of notes on ideas for a new campaign for a client.
“One of the advantages of an open-plan office is its flexibility. This space can be adapted to what our work requires at any given time,” Igoni explains.
Just a few steps away, there is a group of people who are not Bob the Robot employees, but consultants with PR agency Myy, which is part of the same network. Satu Rasa is stretched out on a sofa, while Emilia Gustafsson sits on a Woodnotes bean bag chair with a notebook computer on her lap. The two women are throwing ideas at each other, with Gustafsson making quick notes.
Remedy found the perfect space to turn its vision into reality
Remedy Entertainment is in the gaming industry, which is a business sector of the future, but in the company’s vision, a 1990s office building in Espoo’s Niittykumpu district adapted perfectly to contemporary spatial needs.
It is difficult for visitors to Remedy’s office to even imagine what the office space used to look like. The new home of Max Payne and Alan Wake is an impressive sight.
“About a year ago, we decided we needed a larger office. This place caught our eye, as the location and size suited our needs, and this was the only one among the properties we looked at where we could fit all of our functions under one roof. On the first visit, it was difficult for many of us to see the opportunities this space held, and actually this property dropped to the bottom of our list at first,” Saku Lehtinen says.
In the offices of a gaming company such as Remedy, sofas are natural meeting places.
“The size of the project and the exceptionally tight schedule gave rise to some concerns, but Sponda was able to make it happen. After it was confirmed that the project could be implemented as planned and with a high level of expertise, our decision was much easier to make”.
Sledgehammers sounded the opening notes for the renovation. The building’s old maze of corridors is now gone, replaced by roomy workspaces and meeting places separated by glass partitions. The doors to the meeting rooms have touch screens on their frames, and the glass surfaces are adorned by silhouettes of characters from Remedy games.
“This building is designed to provide natural support for the way people work. In this space, the people who need to meet each other can easily do so, while those who don’t want to be disturbed can work in complete peace,” Lehtinen explains.