Finlayson’s new impressive office sealed the credibility of the brand. At the same time it revolutionised the atmosphere and the company’s way of work.
“This now looks like a design company for the first time.” This is how a customer commented on Finlayson’s new office in Salmisaari, Helsinki.
”Our old office had two corridors, offices and meeting rooms,” says Petri Pellonmaa, CFO at Finlayson.
The company’s new head office is in the other end of the office spectrum. There is a large and impressive loft-like open space in the centre of the office, rising to the height of two floors. Sturdy walls and skylights give the impression of a courtyard changed into a stylish open-plan office.
According to Pellonmaa, the new office has had a significant impact on the atmosphere of the workplace. ”Moving to the new office has been amazingly visible in the atmosphere, and I am speaking on behalf of all employees here. It certainly is not depressing to come to the workplace in the morning.”
Established in 1820, Finlayson is one of the oldest companies in Finland, but its operations went downhill for some time. Finlayson’s trend turned in 2014 with new owners, and the company is now experiencing strong growth. It is strongly building an outlet network of its own, and internationalisation has been begun with a new strategy.
Moving into a new office is a natural part of this change. “'Made with TweetDis plugin for Wordpress' It would not be very credible for the revamped brand to operate in a dusty office block building ,” Pellonmaa says.
Office improves results
According to Pellonmaa, there were also financial and work-related objectives underlying the choice of office. In particular, he emphasises two things.
First, communication between people has improved with the open-plan office, which is important in the head office functions.
”It is now easier to consult a colleague. We believe that it will result in increased efficiency and fewer errors,” Pellonmaa says.
Another significant improvement is the showroom in the new office, showcasing Finlayson products to Finnish and international customers.
”We can now better market our products, and we believe that it will also be visible in sales volumes. In fact, the business is at a completely different level than before the changes. We believe that the new showroom and office have contributed to this,” Pellonmaa says.
”There is a refreshed atmosphere here”
Apparently, the building originally served as a warehouse. The industrial spirit of the old times also gives a special retro-like air to the showroom. Before the move, the premises were thoroughly renovated according to Finlayson’s needs. New walls were built, and meeting rooms, for example, were renovated. According to Pellonmaa, the “gym meeting room” where people sit on exercise balls and stretch on wall bars is the favourite among employees’ children.
The windows of the upper-floor offices feature the specialty of the open-plan office. There are no Finlayson employees sitting behind them, but employees of the neighbouring legal aid office in their workrooms. The entire open-plan office conveys a spirit of openness.
”The customers can see what we are doing, there are no secrets here.”
Finlayson’s growth can already be seen as the need for more space. The open-plan office will soon be expanded by almost 500 square metres by removing one of the partition walls. Pellonmaa believes that the office will be even more functional after the expansion.
”Everyone feels refreshed here. The new site and open-plan office have increased the sense of cohesion. We are now more strongly a team and concretely make more things together,” Pellonmaa describes.