Workplace strategy for booking platform Get Your Guide

2018

Keywords: Workplace strategy,
human-centered architecture,
space planning, interior design,
new work

The quick read
Founded by four friends, Get Your Guide, the booking platform for touristic activities, has been growing tremendously ever since it was founded in 2008. Now, in a new phase of growth, Get Your Guide decided to merge their several offices into one, moving into a prestigious historical building in the heart of Berlin. 
In today’s demanding business world, the office can be a powerful strategic tool to reach entrepreneurial goals by enabling a required work attitude, supporting necessary workflows, and fostering a uniting corporate culture. Get Your Guide was faced with the question of where the young company wanted to be in the coming years and what the workplace should look like that would best support their ambitions. Based on interviews, observations, and workshops with the team and management, Rlevance defined a workplace strategy and established design principles for Get Your Guide’s new office space with the aim to help to reach business goals, fulfill current and future functional requirements of the teams and support the organization's thriving culture. 

Research Phase
The goal for Get Your Guide was not only to build a representative office as their new international headquarter, but to create a workspace that supports business goals, provides employees with a well-fitting work tool, reflects the Get Your Guide culture and is attractive for relevant employee target groups. To achieve all of this, we needed to understand the main challenges of the business, how the teams were currently working, and what they would need for the future. Based on these insights we created a concept that provides Get Your guide an office tailored to their individual needs, thus supporting them best on their venture into the future.

We started our learning journey with one-on-one interviews with the founders and the executive board in order to explore overarching strategic and entrepreneurial targets, main challenges for Get Your Guide as a business, and central brand and cultural values that needed to be communicated. 

To understand the more functional requirements on the daily work we conducted online interviews with middle management on topics like space requirements, work styles, equipment and meeting routines. 

To grasp the employee perspective and to complement insights from the previous step, we ran observation rounds at various Get Your Guide offices and studied real-life behavior, flanked with spontaneous conversations with employees. Here we had the chance to identify unarticulated and to date hidden needs and requirements.

Strategy Phase
In the strategy phase, we first analyzed research results and developed a first understanding of the central business challenges of Get Your Guide, its culture and its work-related needs. We also created the first iteration of a space typology. 

We then combined the research with co-creative work and invited team leads to a workshop. Together we looked at necessary collaboration within and across teams, and at social life in the office. Together we fine-tuned the space typology, and, in a creative visualization, dreamed the ideal office space for Get Your Guide.

Based on all inputs we created an overarching strategic direction that would incorporate the needs of all stakeholders – business, employees, community – helping them to reach their goals. With this strategy, we, for example, tacked the need to stay flexible as an organization, to allow for more spontaneous encounters, and to attract/retain talent. This direction became the basis for the actual workplace design. 

 

Concept and Idea Phase
In the final phase, we developed a multitude of ideas of how to bring strategic requirements to live in Get Your Guide’s new headquarter. For one we developed a detailed typology of workspaces for groups of employees that cater to individual work styles and needs, and complemented them with alternative working zones. We also created a “proximity map” that shows the ideal constellation of spatial distances between teams and units, developed the perfect meeting room set up for current and future demands of the young company, and ideated desired spaces and features to improve the social side of work. Last but not least we came up with ideas of how to bring the brand and cultural values to life. 

The new concept was handed over to be implemented by Kinzo interior designers to create a customized workplace for Get Your Guide which acts as a powerful tool to reach business goals, caters to current and future functional requirements of the teams, and supports the organization's culture. Ultimately it helped Get You Guide on their venture into a prosperous future.

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