To begin with, briefly introduce your company Plan2B?

Plan2B is a place where architects, interior designers and/or end clients can find everything they need for business interior design. Instead of clients looking for floor coverings, interior glass walls or furniture for hotels and offices in different places, we can offer them all in one place. We are with them for everything from space planning and interior design development to installation of selected solutions.

In our offer, we have different solutions from floor coverings, glass walls and furniture for hotels and offices, as well as all necessary accessories for business interiors. With the aim of providing clients with flexible and optimal solutions, we offer furniture in three price categories with luxurious accessories that add a special accent to the interior, depending on the real need of the project.

In addition to products such as office furniture and floor coverings, what additional services do you offer?

If, for example, the client is looking for a new space to move their office, we offer them the service of creating 3D visualization of the interior and strategic planning of the workspace for their narrowed choice of locations. When you have a situation where you have narrowed down the choice of a new office between 2 or 3 spaces, we can help with the development of 3D visualizations for each individual space and in this way clients can more easily imagine how a particular interior could meet their needs. And then, of course, it's easier to make a decision about which space is optimal for their company and the entire team.

In practice, we have encountered situations where individual clients moved into a new office space because they like the location, the building or the price they got from the landlord. Then, after signing the contract, when they started the interior design process, they realized that the chosen space had certain flaws that they had not noticed due to the lack of strategic thinking about the space. Because one space can be a complete hit for a certain company, while at the same time it can be a complete failure for another company. And then we see a series of adjustments in the space that could have been avoided if they had included a consultant for business space when deciding on the space.

What does your process of strategic space planning with clients look like in practice?

During interior design and strategic planning, we first start with creating a concept, and then we do 3D visualizations, which we go through together with the clients. The client is the one who will stay in that space and who has requirements that the chosen space should fulfill. With the help of 3D visuals, he can more easily imagine how it would all look and then he can see what he wants to keep and what to change.

Our goal is to identify the client's needs and find out where they want to be in 3 to 5 years, so that we can see if the chosen office space will suit them only in the short term or if it can be a long-term solution. We have had situations where certain companies entered a new space, went through the process of purchasing and furnishing office furniture, and then after some time they needed to increase the number of jobs in the existing space - and realized that the current space does not provide for the expansion of the team. Some clients then changed the new desks for smaller desks and asked for similar solutions. Of course, you should not take more square footage than necessary, but if you are planning additional employment in the long term, then you should already plan smartly for the interior decoration that will be able to support the subsequent increase of the team.

In your experience, what are the challenges companies face when moving to a new office space?

A short period of time, a limited budget and furniture delivery deadlines are some of the problems that our clients face when moving, of course along with internal logistics and the organization of the move itself.

As far as deadlines are concerned, it is not the same if you are furnishing an office to which you need to move in 3 months or ten days, although you should be understanding for such situations as well. With a longer period of time, you can foresee more things when planning the space compared to situations when the client says that he has found the space and "now he just needs furniture". Today, it is no longer "just finding furniture" because the office should be a place where people will want to work, not because they have to but because they want to. The office will always be a gathering place for people within the company.

With a longer period of time for planning and working out the interior design, many more details and parameters can be foreseen, so that ultimately an office will be created that will attract people, as a desirable place to work.

In the process of creating 3D visualization and planning and designing the interior with the client, we always start with the development of the concept. We are looking for answers to questions such as: what impression does the client want to make on its employees and what kind on partners, what profile of employees does it want to attract and retain, and how do they imagine their office. The point is to get the client to tell us all their needs and wishes, and then we work out the interior concept and combine wishes and reality, and recommend improvements and optimization. In doing so, we are not tied to a single piece of furniture or a specific supplier, but primarily look for a concept that suits that specific client, and then we look for office furniture that fits the concept in terms of budget, style and delivery terms. This is how we help our clients to optimize the budget and delivery times.

You mentioned that the office should be a place where people come to work not because they have to, but because they want to. Businesses today are faced with questions about how to attract employees to the office, so what are your tips for achieving this?

Today, people are increasingly under stress and are looking for ways to alleviate the harmful effects of stress on health. That is why today, when planning office space, more and more emphasis is placed on the fact that the office should provide that warm feeling of home, where the individual feels comfortable and relaxed. Because of this, typical offices where you have your desk and chair are slowly becoming a thing of the past, and for good reason.

Today, offices are becoming a place for socializing and a place where employees can choose how and where they will work at a given moment. It is desirable to encourage spontaneous and informal gatherings where people are more relaxed and ultimately more productive. To create a place where an individual can choose that he needs a space for focused work when he needs to concentrate on a specific part of the work, without having to go to a coffee shop.

The conclusion is that an office is a place that provides people with the opportunity for socializing, collaboration and/or focused work, depending on the current needs of each individual, and the main guiding thread in the design of such offices is the cozy feeling it creates.


Author: Matej Grgačević