Workplace briefing is the term applied to the process of gathering key client/user information and requirements, which are then used to inform any of the following outcomes:
an overall property or estate strategy,
the design of a new building (including location, size, facilities etc.) or
a specific new workspace (perhaps as part of a refurbishment or implementation of new ways of working).
It is a recognised part of the formal RIBA design process – Stages 0 and 1 of the Plan of Work. The rationale for such briefing is simple: without it the resultant workplace can fail to meet the expectations and needs of the occupants and occupying organisation – and may not be fit-for-purpose. It may also overlook desired aspirations or be unable to provide the flexibility for the future-proofing of the new workplace.
The workplace brief includes components such as the vision of the organisation, cultural analysis, occupancy analysis, workplace strategy, space requirements, cost-benefit analysis (business case), environmental conditions, branding, zoning, required work-settings, indicative space planning etc.
Your assignment is to provide a detailed workplace brief (including elements of the workplace strategy, cost-benefit analysis, interior design guidelines and indicative space planning) for the following theoretical organisation:
The IT support department for a large institution, with a mix of back-office support and client facing teams (referred to as the IT Department of Institution Z).
A current headcount of 120 staff increasing to 170 over the next few years, but beyond that the overall headcount is unclear.
The staff are currently based in several buildings, all of which have lease breaks coming up.
A leased office of approx. 600 m2 has been identified as suitable space (see attached space plan).
One-third of the staff are highly mobile attending meetings and working off-site; another third of office-based but attend meetings (in and outside the office); the remainder are fairly mobile. Twenty staff operate the “help desk” contact-centre and there are four team managers each with a PA.
There are four main teams within the IT support department. The 20 contact-centre are desk-based, manning the phones, with an overall desk utilisation of 90%; this team is likely to grow by 30%. There are 40 developers are mostly desk based when in the office but occasionally work from home or are in team meetings, with a desk utilisation of 65%; they are likely to grow by 20% over the next five years. The 30 staff in the build team are mostly office-based but spend much of their time in the build room/lab (with 20 seats/benches), with a main office desk utilisation of 50%; they will also grow by 10%. The final team are the 30 project managers who spend most of their time with customers at their sites or in project meetings with colleagues and/or customers, their utilisation is low at 30%; they are projected to grow by up to 70% over five years.
Customers and suppliers regularly visit the office, and the staff are trained on-site.
Staff conduct a mix of collaborative and creative work, along with work requiring focus and concentration.
The department head wants to integrate the staff into a new joined-up culture and improve overall efficiency and effectiveness. They also want to attract fresh graduates with new IT skills.
The institute has a strong sustainability and wellbeing policy.
A limited budget has been set aside for the move, including funds for design, furniture, IT and change management. They will re-use furniture and IT and the new space is in good condition and ready for the CAT B fit-out. The CAT B fit-out is estimated to be £60/sqft.
The current lease, rates and serviced charge totals £80/sqft per annum, the FM and utilities costs are just £5/sqft/annum, but the building requires a new air-conditioning system estimated to cost £0.5M of which the landlord will pay half. The new space is better quality with ease, rates and serviced charge totals £85/sqft per annum, the FM and utilities costs at £10/sqft/annum. However, the landlord is offering 1 year rent-free in he new building.
(Make any further assumptions clear in your report – create a separate short section titled “assumptions”.)
Eley J & Marmot A (1995) Understanding Offices: What Every Manager Needs to Know About Office Buildings. London: Penguin.
Gillen N, Harris R, Allen T and Bell A (2015) Workplace Briefing – An Overview. London: Workplace Change Organisation.
Kampschroer K, Heerwagen J & Powell K (2007) Creating and testing workplace strategy. California Management Review, 49(2).
Savage A E (2005) Workplace strategy: What it is and why you should care. Journal of Corporate Real Estate, 7(3).
Springer T (2011) Fundamentals of Workplace Strategy. Jasper, IN: Kimball Office.
Word Limit: 2,500 words (max)
Deadline: 4.00pm on 11 January 2019
The coursework is the single submission on which your grade for this module will be assessed by two members of academic staff, using the grading criteria attached below.
The post Workplace briefing is the term applied to the process of gathering key client/user information and requirements, which are then used to inform any of the following outcomes
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