Goodman Group Belgium

At a Glance

  • Polycom and Microsoft:
  • Allow everyone to work from anywhere, using any device and Improve communications

Polycom Solutions & Microsoft® Lync™ are at the Heart of the New Way of Working Concept in the Offices of Goodman Group Belgium

Goodman is an integrated commercial and industrial property group that owns, develops and manages real estate including warehouses, large scale logistics facilities, business parks and offices globally. Goodman’s success is founded on the quality and integrity of their employees, and long-term relationships with their customers plus an unrivalled knowledge of the industrial property. With the  headquarters based in Sydney Australia, Goodman has 35 offices in 18 countries around the globe, and close to a thousand dedicated employees.

In 2012, Goodman Belgium moved the 80 employees to a new office building in the centre of Brussels. This new office was designed based on the New Way of Working concept, already implemented in their HQ in Sydney, and follows the principle of Activity Based Working founded on flexibility, transparency, collaboration and efficiency, and on the premise that no employee owns’ or is assigned to a workstation.

The New Way of Working concept has three core dimensions:

  1. People – todays society’s approach to technology is now focussed on digital tools, which are enabling new types of communications;
  2. Places – todays workforces work increasingly on the move. From airports to
    hotels, to home offices, or during commutes;
  3. Technology –with advanced technology the idea of the office being the primary
    work location is disappearing, and workforces today are given the tools to work
    from anywhere, at any time.

The Hybrid Environment with Unified Communications tools

Peter Van Cauwenbergh, IT Director, Continental Europe at Goodman Belgium shares his objective, “We decided to deliver a concept where employees can choose their personal way of working. Choose where and how. We liberated them from the traditional office and ownership of workstations.” The hybrid environment provides a place for people with shared amenities and spaces. It is a place where no one has an assigned office or workstation. Van Cauwenbergh worked with Polycom® local partners AVEX and Talk&Vision to create the Unified Communication and Collaboration environment necessary for the project to come to life.

To meet the expectations of Van Cauwenbergh, Polycom and Microsoft® were chosen. Together Polycom and Microsoft provide the seamless solution for voice and video conferencing, and the core technologies enabling the New Way of Working concept. “To insure success, we had to deliver the most innovative communications and collaboration platform.” Explains Tom Schuermans, Sales Manager, AVEX. “The
end-to-end solution provided is Polycom RealPresence Platform, Polycom RealPresence Video and Microsoft® Lync™ Server 2013. It is easy to use, regardless of the device the employee chooses, or where he is located.” For Goodman, it is the real-time collaboration solution allowing anyone to connect and collaborate, from anywhere, at any time.

The new office of Goodman Belgium has a number of meeting rooms, work stations and services. The meeting rooms are equipped with a Polycom®HDX®room solution. Employees can book a meeting room from their computer, smartphone or tablet, as the reservation system is linked to Outlook. They are also able to reserve rooms on site, using panels outside each room which indicates the booking information, allowing the employee to see its availability. One can reach any meeting and collaborate from anywhere simply from any device using Lync. Van Cauwenbergh explains “This concept empowers the individuals, who are able to share rich experiences that strengthen relationships and improve productivity.”

Flexible work stations - A proven concept to be extended to other offices

The new working environment at Goodman Belgium is successful. In the past, everyone worked in their own separate office. Now employees can sit and work anywhere. This increases collaboration, and employees can work and consult together easily. In the office space there are flexible work stations, where anyone can sit. If one needs to be isolated, a quiet work station or a cockpit will be a perfect place to work without interruption. With a simple click in Lync, or from any of the Polycom video collaboration solutions or vice versa, a visual connection is established with colleagues around the globe. This allows people to work better together.

Van Cauwenbergh confirms “even the leery employees, not happy in the beginning of losing their personal workstations, are now enjoying the value the ‘freedom’ the Unified Collaboration and Activity Based Working brings.”

Expending the success to other locations

Goodman plans to deploy the Polycom & Microsoft Unified Collaboration solutions to all the offices of continental Europe. The next to benefit is Paris, currently in progress.

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