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Saga is a specialist provider of products and services, including cruises and insurance, to people over 50. At the start of 2020, they were already embarking on a period of change, developing a solid, 10-year transformation strategy. We were appointed to review Saga’s real estate portfolio (including six buildings in and around Folkestone and one in London) and develop a rationalised strategy to move forward with.
After interviewing their executive team, to better understand their vision and the changing organisation, we made the suggestion to turn their seven locations into a three-location strategy. This meant focusing on Enbrook Park, creating a ‘hub’ in the centre of Folkestone, with two smaller sites (another in Folkestone and one in London).
Originally, we may have implemented a denser workstation model, predominantly for contact centre staff or for work that required stricter levels of control and process, like finance teams. However, the pandemic proved that even the contact centre teams could do much of their work from home.
We had to reimagine the purpose of Saga’s office. What our design teams developed was centred around celebration, iconic moments, collaboration, learning and training.
Saga wanted to create a destination that brings people together to collaborate and celebrate the organisation. They already had a great culture at Enbrook but wanted to produce a more immersive experience, break down silos and improve colleague connections.
Previously, employees had been working from rows of tight-knit fixed desks. We wanted to change how people worked and utilised the office going forward. The recreation of Enbrook Park still supports contact centre work but now also aids training, learning and face-to-face development. There are fewer desks and more dynamic spaces where employees can connect, communicate and celebrate together.
In the auditorium, there is a large AV media screen (2m high x 3m wide), where employees can bring large groups of people together for town halls, hold events, share content and feel a part of the Saga family.
Saga also wanted to seriously consider the health and wellbeing of their employees and so we completely transformed the catering provision to incorporate a food counter, juice bar and dining area. Inspired by their cruise ship menus, they developed a high-end food offering, providing healthy options. It’s no longer just a place to eat, but an immersive Saga experience for employees and visitors.
It has been rewarding to support Saga’s leadership ambition. They have bravely turned pandemic challenges into a defining catalyst for future capability, through aligning colleague technology and property strategies for compelling customer experiences.
Craig Murray, Strategy and Design Director, TSK