User-led digital services; User-led digital services;

Digital blueprint for Bruntwood, Manchester and Liverpool

A user-centred digital blueprint integrating digital services across smart buildings

Bruntwood operates a portfolio of more than 100 commercial office properties across the north of England and Birmingham. From co-working desks and meeting rooms to fully serviced offices and headquarters, their spaces respond to a wide range of customer needs.

Growing demands for space-as-a-service opened a new opportunity for Bruntwood to transform its user experience through cutting-edge, user-led digital services across its portfolio. Despite a strong record in trialling technology solutions at individual properties and carrying out proof-of-concept exercises, a uniform approach for the implementation of digital services across its property network was missing.

Arup has worked with Bruntwood to help deliver its vision of creating spaces and services that are truly customer-centric. Our team of digital experts have developed a digital blueprint to shape the physical and digital services of their property portfolio, enabling better customer experiences, improved operational efficiency, and new business insights.

Our collective experiences with the global Covid-19 pandemic has further highlighted the importance of human-centred design. As people's work experiences have been disrupted, there's an opportunity to reimagine what a return to the office environment will look like.

Project Summary

13 digital and physical design concepts

1digital blueprint

5week-long research and experience design sprints

Taking a customer-centric approach

In collaboration with leading stakeholders and decision-makers, we undertook user research to understand the impact and possible benefits of digital services for Bruntwood’s colleagues and customers across their portfolio.

Over an intensive programme of five week-long ‘sprints’ - designed to generate maximum results over a short period of time - our user experience designers carried out customer research, interviews, and experience design at three representative Bruntwood properties. The research insights, illustrated by a series of customer journeys, informed the development of a range of design concepts for new state-of-the-art physical and digital services.

Together, we were able to build a holistic understanding of' customer needs in relation to digital services, and of a digital strategy that would not only address user needs but support Bruntwood’s wider business goals, including taking steps towards a zero-carbon future.

The digital blueprint formed part of a visual deck, designed to be part of a wider strategy to improve the digital user experience.

Creating a digital blueprint

The key to a successful digital strategy is implementing a robust blueprint for its execution. We created a digital blueprint to provide a clear roadmap of new digital services to be introduced in Bruntwood’s properties, detailing architecture from physical spaces to end-user devices.

The digital blueprint was part of a highly visual deck in seven parts, comprising user research, insights, concept ideas, and digital building blocks.

Arup’s final part of the visual deck for Bruntwood provides a series of 13 discrete digital and physical design concepts. The digital blueprint breaks down the procurement process and architecture of the digital systems underpinning those concepts.

The 13 concepts, ranging in suitability for retrofits and new builds, provides Bruntwood with a menu of options, or building blocks, for developing a tailored, state-of-the-art services offer and user experience for each individual property. It provides Bruntwood with the ability to easily assess what they have in place already, and what they could realistically introduce going forward.

The systems architecture consists of open protocols and internet communication technologies, simplifying the adoption of future technologies and services as they are developed by the market.

Improving the digital user experience Improving the digital user experience
The seven-part visual deck was designed to part of a wider strategy to improve the digital user experience for customers. © Bruntwood

Shaping a digital future

Bruntwood leaders engaged and interacted with the research and design process to gain a clear sense of what is achievable at their properties, both new-build and existing, as well as how to achieve it. Equipped with the tools, capacity and forward momentum, Bruntwood has the ability to transform its digital services to provide a seamless user experience across its portfolio.

Arup’s Digital Blueprint has generated a huge amount of interest internally and it’s being referenced frequently which is testament to the quality of the material. ” Paul Bamber Director of Technology, Bruntwood