Co-creation teams at Spotify
Choice is key. The Spotify streaming service allows its employees to decide for themselves where they’d like to work. In order to make sure that employees will continue to enjoy the social experiences associated with office work, they are included early on in the process of developing spatial concepts. The goal of all these projects is to focus on the users as strongly as possible and make the corporate culture of Spotify something that people can directly experience. Sonya Simmonds, the head of Workplace Innovation & Design at Spotify, and her team act as facilitators supporting the design process. The basis of all spatial concepts is a clear strategy that has been coordinated with in-house teams and representatives of other interests. In the co-creation process, Spotify brings together representative groups from the entire company at a maximum of three meetings and assigns them areas of influence to design on their own responsibility. Spotify appreciates the diversity of the co-creation teams, and during the process it makes sure that individual roles are clearly defined and that there is continuous communication both inwards and outwards.
The Spotify office in Berlin occupies two floors of a listed building in the historic city centre. The office features attractive rooms that promote conversation, cooperation and identification with the company. In addition to flexible workstations and zones for concentrated work, the Spotify team members can meet to share ideas in various conference rooms. Numerous areas enable employees to have spontaneous conversations and engage in dynamic work. The centrepiece of the office is the Spotify Hall, a two-storey atrium with a glass roof. Informal meetings and workshops are held here during daily work at the office, and on special occasions it’s also used as the setting for events attended by hundreds of participants.
Cooperative design as a success factor at Dräger Global IT
Right from the start, the Dräger company, which is based in Lübeck, actively included its workforce in the process of designing its new office areas, which are known as the “Heimathafen”, or “home port”. As a result, the needs, experiences and ideas of the employees shaped the basic concept that underlies the new office areas. The first step was to determine how the employees wanted to work together in the future — and what the teams needed in order to work together well. Taking an evolutionary approach, the Corporate Real Estate department tried out individual solutions again and again and adapted them as necessary. The relocation team informed everyone involved about the intermediate stages of the process, displayed draft designs and provided people with furniture they could test. An ambassador concept was used to gather feedback and wishes from the teams; these were then taken into account in the subsequent stages of the design process. In addition, regular meetings were held with the works council in order to resolve individual issues.
The Heimathafen now occupies an entire floor measuring approximately 2,000 square meters. In addition, there’s a supplementary area called the “Marina” with 162 basic workstations. There are also numerous project and meeting rooms, sound-insulated cubicles for concentrated individual work, a small library and open collaboration areas for spontaneous cooperation. The company no longer has any personal offices or workstations; instead, employees can freely choose the surroundings they want to work in according to the “activity-based working” model.
10 co-creation tips for companies:
- Involve your workforce in the design process early on and systematically.
- When you put together the design teams, make sure there is a certain amount of diversity, which makes it possible to see things from a changed perspective.
- Ideally, have external experts conduct and evaluate surveys, workshops and interviews with the employees. That will result in more valid results.
- Define co-creation teams that focus on designing the workplace and include employees’ ideas and suggestions in the planning.
- Offer opportunities to give feedback and hold discussions so that the employees can share their ideas and concerns regarding the design of their workplace.
- Have trained professionals support the design process.
- Make sure there is flexibility in the workplace design so that the various requirements and needs of the employees are met.
- Regard the workplace design as a continuous process, and take employees’ feedback into account even after the spatial design has been finalized.
- Make sure that the employees are regularly informed about the progress of the planning process.
- Share information with other companies and learn about their experiences with co-creation.