MoneySuperMarket Manchester – Creating a tech hub for the future
23,000 sq ft
- Services Involved
Strategy & Design
Design & Build
Activation & Engagement
Activity Based Working
MoneySuperMarket partnered with us to design and build the first Technical Centre of Excellence for their Software Engineers in No.1 Spinningfields, Manchester.
Attract. Connect. Innovate.
MoneySuperMarket partnered with us to design and build their new tech hub. The design of their new office had to reflect their brand, attract Manchester’s top talent, as well as support productivity, collaboration and innovation.
The new tech hub also needed to feel like a MoneySuperMarket office, and create symmetry between the Manchester and London offices. It also needed to attract Manchester’s top engineering talent, as MoneySuperMarket believe these people are key to their continuing success.
A creative and collaborative office for MoneySuperMarket in Manchester
MoneySuperMarket’s Software Engineers were historically spread across four offices in Manchester and Chester. These dispersed teams weren’t able to effectively connect with one another, or their customers. It was our task to design and build and an office where MoneySuperMarket’s top tech talent could work together as a united team, moving faster to build better products.
The space needed to inspire people to operate effectively, efficiently and collaboratively. MoneySuperMarket’s developers also needed the opportunity to form better connections with their customers (using tech), empowering teams to create world-class apps, websites and digital solutions.
"Each team has what they need to work collaboratively including lots of wall space for Kanban boards, architecture diagrams and designs."Dave Hasley, CTO, Moneysupermarket Group
Improving work experiences
We identified eight themes that could positively impact the team’s daily work activities and make the space perform better. We investigated, analysed and understood these themes, using the findings to create a tailored workspace designed to inspire productivity.
Eight themes to consider:
When you enter the new workspace – what impression do you get? It was important to create a welcoming arrival space for employees, external visitors and new recruits.
2. Health & Wellbeing
This is all about diversity, inclusivity and mental and physical wellbeing. All aspects of the space (from ergonomics down to lighting) were designed to improve employee experiences.
3. Team Working
We carefully considered how individuals could connect and collaborate. How do employees utilise technology to work effectively as a small team, and across larger teams?
4. Rhythms & Rituals
How do you make each day enjoyable, productive and effective? Getting the best out of their people, meant better results for their customers. Firstly, we got to understand the rhythms of how each employee works and then discovered how these rhythms could be supported, making each day as productive as possible.
Just like a village, an effective workplace should have everything that employees need to be productive within an easy and accessible distance. There should be a choice of settings to support each activity. For example, spaces for employees to focus, collaborate and socialise. We designed multiple neighbourhoods within the office space, creating overlapping and shared areas where different neighbourhoods could come together. This design style gives employees a sense of belonging while bringing communities of people together in certain areas.
The first element of customer-centricity is making sure that all employees feel connected to the customer. Employees should be able to see the real-time impact that their work is having on people’s lives, providing a sense of purpose. We created a large 7mx2m digital screen between the two floors. This communication tool can display messages such as “You’ve just saved Mr Jones £200” allowing Software Engineers to see the difference their work is making.
This is all about looking at the physical space and figuring out how to make the most of it. We took a modular approach so that employees could ‘plug and play’. For example, creating spaces that could be broken down into smaller meeting rooms, but also used as one large meeting area for the whole workforce. This flexible design means that the team can change the office as much as they want, supporting the evolving needs of the organisation.
How do you keep a sense of connectivity within a 23,000 sq ft city centre building over two floors? We designed a giant hole between the space to make two floors feel like one. The large digital screen connects the two floors and this central point of information and graphics can be used for a variety of purposes – to share information, to bring people together for floor briefs or to screen movies after work. The screen creates a sense of movement between the two floors, generating an immersive experience and connection between everyone working in the building.
"You listened, but most importantly, you understood."Tim Jones, Group CIO at Moneysupermarket Group
After thirteen weeks on-site, we created an intuitive environment in Manchester for MoneySuperMarket their Software Engineers to do their best work, providing their customers with the services, tools and products they need to grow their money. The new fit-for-purpose office allows Software Engineers to work efficiently, collaboratively and effectively in-house. Grant Dean, Lead Designer on the project had this to say:
“This was an amazing project to work on with a truly engaging team. We’ve created a great new home for the MoneySuperMarket in Manchester. It’s not just an office; it’s a home”
What’s next for MoneySuperMarket Group?
As a result of the hugely successful environment we co-created, we’ve continued to work with MoneySuperMarket’s central services offices (28,000 sq ft) in Ewloe, North Wales. With different team dynamics to the Manchester office, we had to ensure that we investigated, analysed and understood the different work groups in Ewloe, creating a tailored menu of work settings and an inspiring environment.