Jarden Home Brands Brings Staff Together with its New Open Offices

An open design inspires collaboration and innovation for Jarden Home Brands 

When Jarden Home Brands decided to move their headquarters from Daleville to Fishers, Indiana, it was the perfect moment to align its office design with its company values of honesty, integrity, expediency, quality and innovation. It was also time to bring its staff together, who remarked of feeling siloed by 64-inch-high workstations, with an open office design. To realize this vision, JHB tapped Axis Architecture + Interiors for the job. The finished space incorporates a variety of dimensional and dynamic spaces to create a sense of energy and passion while retaining a casual and comfortable aura. The 45,000 square feet of office space invites and fosters open collaboration, yet also provides respites for individuals to “get away” for focused work.

<em>The open design of Jarden Home Brands enables collaboration, even as its bright colors exude warmth. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck</em>.

The open design of Jarden Home Brands enables collaboration, even as its bright colors exude warmth. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.

When was the project completed?

2015

How much space (SF)?  

45,000 SF

Was this new or renovated space? 

Renovated space.

SF per person?  

225

How many employees?

200

What is average daily population?  

70 percent work in the office.

Is there a mobile work or work from home policy?  

Yes, about 30 percent work from home.

<em>The open design of the workstations replaced high walls at JHB's former headquarters. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.</em>

The open design of the workstations replaced high walls at JHB’s former headquarters. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.

Describe work-space types.

JHB has an open-office environment, with open collaborative meeting areas. The leadership also has open office spaces, so that their employees have access to them.

What kind of meeting spaces are provided?  

A mixture of enclosed and open meeting spaces are planned throughout the space. They range in size from small focus booths to large boardrooms.

What other kind of support space or amenity spaces are provided?

An open social hub and forum area give flexibility for small and large meetings. The social hub and forum surround an internal courtyard, which provides additional space for meetings or respite.

What kind of programming or visioning activities were used?

A comprehensive programming exercise was completed by Choreo. There were leadership visioning sessions, smaller focus groups of visioning, a companywide survey and a two week observation study.

Were any change-management initiatives employed?

Yes, Choreo conducted a change-management initiative. Along with identifying certain individuals as “change agents” within the company that were tasked as advocates for the new work environment, Choreo also led town hall sessions to educate employees about the value of their new space. Choreo was onsite for a few weeks after the space was completed to log complaints and issues, as well as act as a concierge to help people adapt.

JHB's kitchen area also invites community. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.

JHB’s kitchen area also invites community. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.

Please describe any program requirements that were unique or required any special research or design requirements.

There was a demonstration kitchen designed with the help of Martha Stewart’s team. This kitchen was designed to be filmed, so there were special requirements to make it look good on camera.

Were there any special or unusual construction materials or techniques employed in the project?

We hired a company called Project One to create a custom art piece in the lobby. The wall is made of ball jars, which is special to Jarden since they produce this product. The office is also attached to a large warehouse that stores a football field’s worth of jars. The mural of ball jars is lit and painted to look like a field of raspberries. It provides a dynamic texture and is very impactful as the first thing you see when you enter the space. It also celebrates their brand in an artful way.

What major furniture products did you use?

We worked with Business Furniture, the Indiana Steelcase dealer. Systems furniture was used throughout the space. Lounge furniture is used throughout the project to encourage impromptu collaborative meetings. Booth seating and bar height seating is used in the social hub area.

Are there any furnishings or spaces specifically included to promote wellness/wellbeing?

Walk stations are provided as an alternative to sitting at your desk. There are also lounge pieces specifically meant to be areas of respite.

If the company relocated to new space, what was the most difficult aspect of the change for the employees? 

The switch from a high-cubicle, more private environment to an open environment.

The wall is made entirely of colorful mason jars, which is a fun nod to their creator Ball Canning, since Jarden manufactures the iconic jars. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.

The wall is made entirely of colorful mason jars, which is a fun nod to their creator Ball Canning, since Jarden manufactures the iconic jars. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.

How did the company communicate about the changes and moves?

Choreo provide change-management services and helped with constant communication to employees.

If so, what were the most surprising or illuminating or hoped-for results?

People were more positive about the open environment than expected. There were custom bookcases designed to display product and screen one area of open office from another to add more privacy. The bookcases took longer than expected to produce and were not put in until people had occupied the space for a few months. When they were put in, employees were disappointed that it closed them off to other groups. It was a surprising revelation since privacy was so important in the beginning stages of talking with employees about their concerns.

Tell us more! 

The workspaces incorporate natural light through the ribbon windows along the exterior and the skylights that were added to the inner space to create an open, welcoming atmosphere that remains personal to the individual occupants. Our strategic use of color and texture brings life and depth to the space. The design absorbs and returns creative and productive energy. It is a space that supports innovation, and the innovative people who work within.

Our supporting vendors Project One and Specified Lighting were instrumental in the success of this project. Project One brought to life our concept for a ball jar used as a catalyst for artwork. Lighting is one of the most important facets to any project. Melinda Dykstra, through her knowledge and perseverance, the lighting makes this space.

Color and light play huge roles in the new design of JHB's offices. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.

Color and light play huge roles in the new design of JHB’s offices. Image courtesy of Susan Fleck.

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