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FCW : July 30, 2013
July 30, 2013 FCW.COM 17 Knocking down more than physical walls The GSA redesign built on principles and insights Gensler developed through previous workplace transformations, including a headquarters remodeling for travel technology rm Sabre Hold- ings in 2007. Before the redesign, the company's of ces held 3,000 employ- ees in 4,000 seats. Badge data showed that 35 percent of the workforce did not enter the of ces on any given day. By moving to exible, unassigned space for all employees, including the CEO, the company consolidated ve of ce spaces of 1 million square feet into two buildings that total 470,000 square feet and are certified under Leadership in Energy and Environ- mental Design standards. The transformation cut Sabre's global real-estate costs by more than 25 percent, saved $10 million in opera- tional expenses and reduced the pre- vious average of 350 square feet per person to 185. The new headquarters t 1.35 employees per cubicle, a signi - cant increase from 0.81 previously. In addition, Sabre has slashed its energy consumption by 61 percent, reduced its carbon footprint by 54 percent and saved more than 22 million gallons of water. "We needed to accommodate more people and be smarter about our use of space," said Leilani Latimer, who was Sabre's senior director of sustainability initiatives at the time. "When the physi- cal walls came down, a lot of other walls came down, too.... Not having the physical walls opened people up to a lot more collaboration." Now employees might meet on the comfy couches in the building's lobby or in the break room, or they might "touch down" at a bar stool in the break area to work between meet- ings. Although employees were initially assigned rolling sets of le drawers, many preferred to switch to digital records. An internal social media site with space for personal pictures and corporate recognition replaced the old habits of photographs on desks and plaques on walls. "Conversation was one of the learn- ing moments for us --- how loudly they speak on the telephone," Latimer said. "People's behaviors and manners changed by being in open space." Dealing with 'separation anxiety' The U.S. Patent and Trademark Of ce and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) have also saved money and increased employee satisfaction through of ce designs that rely heavily on hoteling. At USPTO, the dominance of quiet, focused work drove the decision to switch to hoteling and increase tele- Driven by ef ciency At GSA... The incredible shrinking of ce... Across the U.S. workforce, employees are at their desks only about half the work- week, thanks to travel, meetings, time off and work-from-home arrangements. 65% 800+ $24,000,000 of employees now telework at least one day per pay period The new headquarters will be home to 3,300 employees, compared with just 2,500 before the redesign. The consolidation in of ce space will save GSA $24 million in lease payments each year. A year ago, employers typically allocated 170 square feet per person in of ce space. Now the trend is toward 150 square feet, and the Of ce of Management and Budget has set a goal of 130 square feet per person. Employers now designate about 60 percent to collaborative space, 20 percent to quiet, focused space and the balance to a combination of social and learning space. collaborative quiet social/learning
July 15, 2013
August 15, 2013