How Savills returned to the office safely
Savills is one of the world's most prominent real estate advisors. Savills offers a broad spectrum of specialized services, from investment advice to valuation assessments, project management, and property management.
When Bruno Bruins, former Minister of Medical Care & Sports, summoned the Netherlands to work from home as much as possible on March 12, 2020, we wanted to support our employees in this as best we could. Yet, working from home is not an option for everyone, so we looked for a solution allowing these employees to come to the office safely. Initially, we planned this in Excel, which was a hell of a job. Our Managing Director Jan de Quay had learned about some excellent experiences with the Ciao platform. When we started using it, managing workplaces became a lot easier. Not only can we now easily book our workspaces, but in the event of an outbreak, we can easily trace who was in the office at what time and who sat where. Fortunately, that hasn't been an issue yet, but the fact that we can trace it gives us peace of mind.
“The Ciao platform gives insights into which employees sit where, and which desks are available.”
The significance of the office
There is a lot of media coverage about the role of the office now we mostly all work from home. I am convinced that we should not underestimate the significance of the office. It is the place where people meet, where ideas originate, where people work together. I can already notice how happy colleagues are to be back in the office for a single day. I hope that we can soon upscale the number of available workplaces and, with the help of Ciao, enable a smooth return to the office.
Behavior plays a role as well
Our biggest challenge right now is capacity. The demand for workplaces is greater than the places we can facilitate based on current government advice. Ciao's platform helps us by providing insight into who sits where and what spaces are available. Since the last update, we can also trace which colleagues are present, which is very nice. But an app alone is not enough; employee behavior also plays a role. Applying the principle of 'first come, first served’ is not going to work. It requires some coordination and attuning.
For example, we have two departments on the 22nd floor. We have agreed that one department can book workplaces on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The other department - which is slightly larger - can book on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. This ensures colleagues can meet each other at a distance. The app facilitates all that, and if someone has booked incorrectly, it can easily be altered.
Ciao for pool cars
In the meantime, we also use Ciao to book our pool cars. We initially used an Outlook calendar, where the reception desk was to book the cars. By using Ciao, we have made this a lot easier. Actually, you can use the platform for anything, as long as it has to be scheduled.
Our employees are delighted with Ciao. We have informed everyone through an internal communication campaign. In familiarizing people with Ciao, posters are located at the entrance and on the disinfection consoles, and we placed stickers with workplace numbers and QR-codes everywhere.
The implementation of Ciao was straightforward. We provided a workplace layout, and together with the Ciao team, we defined the zones and the structure. Subsequently, Ciao implemented everything at the back-end of the system. That worked flawlessly. Ciao even gave us input for our campaign texts. I twisted it somewhat because this type of communication has to match the culture in your organization seamlessly. However, it did set me off on a good start.
If we have a question, Ciao responds very quickly, and they consider our feedback. As it is a new platform, you are really part of its development. The service desk also reacts very quickly. After all, it's technology, so there can be a hick-up sometimes. It's wonderful that they deal with it quickly. I can only say the response time is very high. Indeed, we are very pleased, not only with the platform but also with the collaboration.
Are you wondering how Ciao can help your organization return to the office safely? Please contact us for a conversation without any obligation, or book a demo immediately.