It has comfortable couches, bean bags overlooking windows, quiet rooms, and even soundproofed booths.
Communications applications maker Whispir designed its new local headquarters in One Raffles Quay with contemplation in mind. The new space is steeped with amenities a creative thinker ruminating ideas all day would appreciate: Comfortable couches, bean bags overlooking windows, quiet rooms, and even soundproofed booths if absolute silence is required.
That is not to say that Whispir has designed a workplace that is all thinking and no doing. The startup’s local team, including CFO and company secretary Gareth Roberts managed the new office project and enlisted OSCA for creative design to provide an inspiring place for employees to produce breakthrough ideas - the type that have fueled the firm’s recent accelerated client expansion in Asia.
“Whispir has a unique culture where design, design process and innovation are respected and intrinsic elements of what we all do, every day, across all aspects of our business,” said Jeromy Wells, founder of Whispir. “The office is designed to reflect this ethos. It is a space that reflects our broader culture and a space that inspires.”
Exploring the new Singapore office, there are plenty of spots where staff can ease themselves to process their thoughts or play with their ideas. This includes a living room-like area with a sofa and bench chair for employees to relax.
Soundproofed phone booths and quiet spaces allow for confidential phone calls or some quiet thinking and creating time, said Wells, and there is a window seat with bean bags you can relax, think and look over the city in the midst of a brainstorming session.
To accommodate a variety of creative collaboration or personal work setups, Whispir’s new boardroom was designed with a movable table and connections. These can be configured to make either a large and open event space, a brainstorming bunker where staff can scribble and write on the whiteboard walls with their new ideas or plans, or separate workstations and desks.
Aside from the boardroom, there are smaller meeting rooms which Wells said were designed around the four elements to help foster creativity and thinking: The blue ‘denim’ room is reflective of water, the red ‘brick’ room represents fire, the green-and-brown ‘grass’ room stands for earth, and the ‘sky’ room featuring the Singapore skyline was inspired by air.
The new office’s mindfulness is also shown in its more practical features. It offers global power points so foreign colleagues, customers and partners that visit would no longer have to bother with country adapters.
For Singapore-based staff, all desks have conveniently built-in USB ports for charging devices, and there is accessible Wi-Fi throughout the office so staff can move around while still remaining connected. To prevent the hassle of looking for team members given an office where working locations can be in flux, all Whispir employees are on softphones, which means the number at their desks is also on their PC and mobile devices, even following them globally.
He reckoned the startup’s newly built base in Singapore will be crucial for its expansion plans, including increasing investment in the island, hiring more local talent such as sales and customer success staff, and pursuing expansion across Asia following a recent string of blue chip enterprise customer wins in Singapore.
“Whispir’s Singapore office space has an emphasis on elegant and functional design to accommodate a growing technology company,” said Wells. “It will offer more room for the growing team and a fresh space to support innovation across Whispir’s product portfolio.”
The founder said that building the Singapore headquarters was a feat, given the time constraints and particular design requirements involved. Whispir was rapidly outgrowing its old space, but haphazardly moving into just any space would have compromised its central design and innovation ethos.
“While we sought speed, we weren’t willing to compromise on quality, design or functionality,” said Wells. “We wanted to ensure the office was beautifully designed and equipped with the elements that would future proof it for our continued growth.”
“We adopted flexible working practices to make way for the new space while ensuring our team could be at its most productive. This meant that we could continue to provide the highest level of support for our customers and partners while planning for our exciting new office.”
Whispir’s new headquarters is located at One Raffles Quay, South Tower 1, #27-12 Singapore 048583.
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