Dyer Brown recently designed a new headquarters for global market intelligence and data analytics provider International Data Group, Inc. (IDG). The workplace realignment project consolidates U.S. operations for IDG's three separate business units under one roof, in a three-floor, 125,000-square-foot office building on a scenic campus in Needham, Mass. With each unit now more or less occupying its own floor, the brand-inspired environment is custom-designed to accommodate the unique culture and workflow of each.
"The idea from IDG leadership was to create a space that reflected their identity as a 'house of brands' rather than a 'branded house,'" commented Ashley Dunn, AIA, director of workplace for Dyer Brown. "Within the overarching design concept, each floor is distinct from the others."
Boasting a brand-inspired setting and innovative solutions for employee productivity and wellness, the reimagined interiors also present original environmental graphics and state-of-the-art spaces for video, broadcast and podcast production. Accommodating more than 500 employees, the innovative workplace has resulted from a collaborative engagement process between Dyer Brown's acclaimed workplace studio and IDG corporate leadership. The company is expected to move into the new headquarters later this year.
"The palette of finishes and flexible, ergonomic furnishings also support wellbeing and productivity for every employee, adds Dunn. "We believe the strategy-driven design will help support IDG in its continued success and growth in the technology and media marketplaces, both as a platform for talent recruitment and retention as well as a stage for honing client relations and workflow."
Uniting the workplace at the elbow of the floor plate are common zones and public-facing amenities, starting with an entrance lobby that also serves as a pantry and break area, offering visitors a glimpse of company culture in action. Some shared centralized services are located together for efficiency and coordination, such as the human resources center, which has offices for all three divisions together on the 1st floor. The three floors are unified through new corporate furniture standards developed by Dyer Brown, as well recurring themes such as open ceilings in common areas and subtler touches like pendants with Edison lamps.
Also unifying the three divisions, an imaginative and memorable installation of Dyer Brown-designed environmental graphics celebrates the company's global reach and worldwide operations. Signs indicate distances from the headquarters to other IDG city hubs such as in Paris and Singapore. A list of the company's international offices appears above banquette seating in the pantry area. Each floor also displays a graphic theme focused on global regions IDG serves, such as Asia and North America, with a major city from each geography inspiring the graphics in common areas and outside conference rooms: One floor's collaboration space, for example, sports imagery of Big Ben, while a similar area downstairs is emblazoned with a map of São Paulo.
"It's all about the multitude of influences coming together to create something exciting and whole," explained Mikala Siciliano, AIA, project manager with Dyer Brown. "The city maps illuminate this idea in how their blocks coming together to form neighborhoods, for example, a theme reinforced in the abstracted carpet pattern evoking urban maps or computer circuitry. Reinforcing the distinct business units, a different primary color dominates each floor -- blue, burgundy, or green -- yet each level also includes references to all the other colors, creating a cohesive and memorable experience."
Photography: Andy Ryan, Courtesy of Dyer Brown