In this BCO Award-winning project, AECOM created a workplace strategy for National Grid that reflected National Grid’s work styles, increased collaboration and knowledge sharing across the businesses, and created savings of £8-10million per annum in operating costs. Additionally, in an industry first, National Grid objectively measured the impact on productivity, through a series of cognitive tests, which revealed an 8% increase in performance.

The international electricity and gas company National Grid felt that their buildings were poorly utilised and no longer suited the way they worked. AECOM’s Strategy Plus team was commissioned to create a workplace strategy for National Grid that reflected National Grid’s work styles and could increase collaboration and knowledge sharing across the businesses. National Grid would then implement this in a one-floor pilot space, at their Warwick site, before embarking on full project roll-out.

A workplace strategy was developed, using a research and evidence based approach, and with full engagement with the teams and departments involved. Starting with senior leadership interviews and visioning sessions, we were able to articulate the vision and key drivers for the space. These were to create space that was better able to support and express the aspirations of the business, drive space harder to allow room for growth in their current building and to increase knowledge sharing across the businesses, in order to drive efficiencies and innovation.

Further research and data collection activities included utilisation studies, online surveys and workshops. We then translated this strategy into a concept design. The main objectives of the design were:

  • Increase ad hoc communication by providing Informal collaborative space and project areas distributed throughout the floor.
  • Provision of a greater choice of different settings to accommodate various working tasks and styles, which would also breakup the regimented feel of the original floor plan.
  • Provide a more stimulating and creative environment representative of National Grid culture and brand.

In parallel with the design process, we are also implementing a comprehensive programme of change management which creates open dialogue with staff and a process which was undertaken in partnership with the business. This approach has created a strong sense of ownership for the final outcome, ensuring that change sticks in the long term. We continue to work with National Grid as they roll the solution out across its occupied estate in the U.K.