The lockdown and the associated home office regulations shook up the workplace last year. The dsb Group used the Corona crisis as an opportunity to create a more employee-friendly and productive work environment. Before the move, the software company conducted an employee survey to determine the needs of its employees. Based on this, a new office concept was developed, which has now been implemented.
The software company, which is part of the Beck Group, has been based in Neckarsulm, Germany, since it was founded over 50 years ago. Today, dsb employs 125 people and has additional offices in Frankfurt and Northampton (UK). In addition to publishers such as Spiegel, Heise and Spektrum der Wissenschaft, the IT professionals' customer base also includes FUNKE Mediengruppe, ADAC and brand-name companies such as Orsay and Betty Barclay.
Now the dsb group has moved within Neckarsulm from Konrad-Zuse-Strasse to the OTS building at Carl-Zeiss-Strasse 2.
Even before the pandemic, all dsb employees could work almost entirely from home if they wanted to. This arrangement proved to be a great advantage from the beginning of the first lockdown. When the dsb group was looking for new office space last year, it wanted to know what the ideal working environment would be for its employees, so it conducted a survey. The survey had four core questions: How do dsb employees want to work in the future? How many days a week would they like to be on-site at the office or work from home? How can the working environment be made as attractive and efficient as possible? What tools are needed?
About 80% of respondents would like to work three days on mobile or at home and two days in the office after the end of the pandemic. Some colleagues who do not have their own office at home would prefer to come to the office more often.
"We are taking these wishes into account with the new office space. We are downsizing somewhat, as fewer employees will be on site at the same time," says Olaf Bendt. "At the same time, we want to optimise the exchange between employees on site. We quickly came to the conclusion that the best way to achieve this was through a project-based free-seating concept."
With this concept, dsb employees do not have a fixed localised desk, but sit together for the duration of a project. This, in turn, benefits customers. When project managers, programmers and key account of a project sit in one area, they exchange ideas much better and faster. But even those who want to work in a concentrated and quiet manner will find retreat options in several quiet work rooms in the new offices. In this way, each employee can decide individually how he or she can work best at any given time. With a hygiene concept, minimum occupancy and rapid tests, dsb ensures the greatest possible safety on site.
Employees of all dsb companies can log in at any workstation and access their files and software tools with free seating. "Implementing the whole thing in compliance with the legal framework conditions such as DSGVO and ISO standards was not exactly trivial, but we succeeded well," says a pleased Bendt.
dsb employees who still needed furniture for their home offices were able to choose lamps, tables, mobile pedestals, cabinets and shelves in the run-up to the move. This was because what was no longer needed went to the employees in the first step. In the second step, a school and several vaccination centers were pleased to receive the former dsb inventory. The Adolf Schmitthenner High School in Neckarbischofsheim, for example, received tables, standing desks, presentation and partition walls. Additional partition walls went to various vaccination centers in the Kraichgau region.
Susanne Pinkes, assistant to the management, describes the new rooms with these three characteristics. She organised the move, which was not always easy during the Corona pandemic - taking hygiene requirements and regulations into account.
She also took some dsb memorabilia with her to the new domicile. " The future needs origins. We offer our customers over 50 years of IT expertise. Publishers and brand owners benefit from our in-depth process knowledge when it comes to digitisation. We combine the latest technology with extensive practical experience. In this way, our customers get right to the top of the learning curve," emphasises Bendt.
"We will continue to provide training in 2021. Because the demand for digitisation solutions is greater than ever and we need highly trained IT specialists for our projects. Anyone who is interested in an IT specialist apprenticeship or business informatics studies at DHBW Moosbach is welcome to apply to us," affirms Adifete Kipar, HR officer at the dsb Group.