CFG Bank

Workplaces / Strategy → Design → Interiors / 97,000 SQ. FT.

The Challenge

In a world where so many employees have work from home options, how can businesses and organizations entice employees to return to the office? How can they retain their top talent in this competitive market, and attract new talent with fresh ideas and views? These were all questions CFG Bank had to ask themselves. Their old office was outdated and running out of space, both in the external parking lot and inside the walls. Furthermore, they wanted a way to really draw in new talent. They needed a space that would reflect their core values and ideas of being open, inviting, creative, and encouraging to employees and customers alike. They approached NewGround, and soon began developing a plan to success.

The Journey

As with many of our projects, NewGround started with strategy and a Discovery Session with CFG Bank executives and key decision makers. Originally, space projections came back revealing the opposite of what CFG Bank claimed they wanted: a cramped space with no room for employees to collaborate or grow. NewGround pushed back, encouraging CFG Bank to try new, innovative ideas and truly embrace what it means to be a Groundbreaker. After another round of brainstorming, CFG Bank and NewGround were able to help craft ideas for a space that would use innovative technology, modern employee amenities, and a fun atmosphere to make employees excited to come to work. Furthermore, a full furniture tour through Chicago that displayed the MillerKnoll options available to them inspired CFG Bank to craft the best space for the employees they possibly could.

Using virtual headset technology, CFG Bank was able to understand the scope and layout of the design options and make changes throughout the design process. They settled on an industrial, cozy, and comforting feel, leveraging NewGround’s retail capabilities and experience to craft a space that would feel welcoming to employees, as if they were stepping foot into a coffee shop instead of just an office building. Designers, environmental graphic specialists, and interior design specialists all worked together to include details that would pay homage to the Baltimore community and the employees themselves. Modular wall systems, multi-use and future-proofed walls and spaces to allow for further growth, local artist graphics, and flexible, customizable office spaces were all designed step-by-step into the space. Natural light was also greatly important to CFG Bank, as the old office had little to no nature light. Light was carefully calculated within the space so that it could continue to connect high-traffic areas and make individual workstations bright and open.

CFG Bank also wanted to incorporate unique elements into the space that would engage their employees not just on a professional level, but on a personal, fun level too. They wanted it to be a fun place to work, where employees could take breaks to enjoy themselves. NewGround designed collaborative and engaging spaces throughout the building to accomplish this, such as community areas, break rooms, game rooms, and even a golf simulator. In addition to these spaces being excellent community areas for employees to relax in, some of these spaces are also equipped with the technology needed to hold large meetings. CFG Bank also created an entirely unique concept: a hidden lounge built within the space. This “hidden lounge” is hidden behind a piece of artwork, and once inside, allows employees to relax and chat comfortably. It’s a unique focal piece that highlights CFG Bank’s hip and modern approach to style and branding.

The Destination

By allowing staff to directly customize their workstations, contribute to ideas, and remain the focus within the Discovery Session, CFG Bank was able to create an innovative and one-of-a-kind experience that transcends a simple main office building or corporate workplace. They have instead created a space that employees can engage with in both professional and personal levels, encouraging both “heads down work” moments as well as fun, engaging breaks. Bank now has a Groundbreaking space that will be the envy of the region – and encourage employees both new and old to engage in the space.