Squaredot win BCO Test of Time Award
From 1970’s time capsule to 2017 test of time award winner. Our transformation project for Birmingham City Council wins the British Council for Offices Test of Time award.
The vision was to deliver a modern, flexible, efficient and cost effective workplace for staff, which will facilitate new working practices, improve service delivery and act as a catalyst for culture change. Squaredot translated that vision into physical work space.
And it delivered. It’s not just us who think so. Birmingham Council’s Woodcock Street won last night’s British Council for Offices (BCO) Test of Time award, recognising the fantastic success of the council’s visionary transformation project.
10 Woodcock Street is much more than a workplace – it provides employees with choices and options of where to socialise, where to meet and how to deliver their job role.
The scale of the transformation is apparent in the Street, where employees have a clear sense of confidence, pride and motivation and this energy fills the atrium. The Street is buzzing with art exhibitions from local colleges, specialist interest groups such as a knitting club and informative events from health groups, police and charities.
Employees have spoken of how they feel the activities promote well-being, personal development and knowledge sharing beyond their own job role. The Council is now positioned to better attract talented staff through offering a working environment that is equal to or ahead of the best examples of private and public sector organisations.
By commercial and public sector standards 10 Woodcock Street is forward-looking, modern, bright and effective. More importantly, it has healthier, happier, more sustainable and more productive employees.
Whilst saving an enviable £9 million a year.
The BCO had this to say about the project;
"The City Council is rightly very proud of this flagship building which allowed them to rationalise their property portfolio and cut costs. The strong BREEAM and EPC ratings endorse the credentials of this high quality multifunction office.
When 10 Woodcock Street won the national BCO Corporate Award in 2013 it was in recognition of the successful culmination of Birmingham City Council's five year journey to rationalise and restructure its entire back office portfolio.
That it has won the BCO’s 2017 Test of Time Award is recognition of the success of the Council’s 'Working for the Future' programme, of which Woodcock Street was the jewel in the Crown. With its new Chambers the Council consolidated 25 buildings into one, paving the way for the successful relocation of 2,700 people and also began a fundamental change in the way their employees work and operate together.
At the time the judges noted: “The creative design has provided a vibrant, open plan layout” and this still stands very true today six years on from completion. The agile space has performed incredibly well securing closer collaboration and interaction between the council’s services and teams, maintaining its flexible working environment.
The main objectives of providing a new modern building with a transformational working environment have been achieved at every level and the building is working superbly for the Council and its staff. This has also driven cost savings.
The depth of research and engagement into planning the blueprint has meant there has been no significant design changes since occupation - very impressive given the scale of the project.
Employees are engaged and motivated, and the building has acted as the foundation for the creation of a dynamic community, which has had a fantastic impact on the well-being of staff. Indeed, the success of change has been recognised by both the private and public sector and the project is seen as 'leading the way' in both workforce and property transformation.
It was also highlighted as best practice within the "Leaner and Greener: Delivering Effective Estate Management" report produced as part of an inquiry by the Westminster Sustainable Business Forum.
10 Woodcock Street demonstrates ‘Test of Time’ in every respect; building design, continued staff engagement, constant flexibility and agile workplace, maintenance and durability. The building has been worked hard since completion, but has remained robust and will, no doubt, continue to provide an excellent work place for the future."