When electrical giant Samsung decided to bring its customer service operation back to the UK, it moved into a faceless open-plan office in Leeds, with capacity for over 300 staff. The brief given to MPL was very much about cosmetics, displays and branding, with the caveat of retaining the existing floor covering, ceiling, desks and space configuration.
The first job was to whitewash all the walls and repaint the structural columns, which in their former shade of dark blue only served to suck out what little natural light there was. Repainted and with Samsung branding applied, the space instantly felt more open and light. MPL's wall-to-wall graphic at the far end of the office introduced a corporate brand element and an injection of colour. Branded wall art was also applied the top of the walls, by each appliance 'zone' and in the meeting room.
Like many call centres and commercial environments, the Samsung office presented unique refurbishment problems. Call centres rely heavily on telephones and technology, and when an appliance giant is your client, power supply and cables are a real issue. The unique set up in Leeds is evident when you look around the room - washing machines, fridges, TV screens and more printers than you can count line the walls. The staff need access to working examples of Samsung's products so they can run tests and help customers on-the-spot. We ensured there were enough power points in logical places, and to make sure the cables were organised and stored in a safe, uncluttered way.
Another unique aspect of this refurbishment is displays and storage. With many high-value items within the office and a need for staff to see the products they are talking about, we designed and installed bespoke display units with lockable storage. Where possible, the units have been teamed with visual branding, including illuminated displays.
We also turned the unusual 'tunnel' area that staff walk through into a 'product hall of fame', with custom-built podium-style display units with acrylic box covers, Samsung imagery and blue LEDs lights.