Kristen Ambrose

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Gordon Gn

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Timothy Logan

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Josh Tooill

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Kevin Vandeman

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Camilla Moretti

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Learn About HKS Idea Fellowship

Upali Nanda, PhD

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Tyler Schwede

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Kate Renner

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Angela Ramer

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Optimizing the Outpatient Environment

Optimizing the Outpatient Environment

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As part of HKS’ Idea Fellowship, our team comprised of architects and designers in our Detroit and Chicago HKS offices asked: what if we thought differently about outpatient clinics and measured the impact of our design? By conducting a yearlong analysis of a new HKS-designed outpatient center in Sylvania, Ohio, this team of idea fellows learned that standardization leads to measurable savings in time and money for outpatient clinics, and even improves patient satisfaction.

We began by examining the influence a clinic’s physical design has on organizational efficiency. Once we understood that relationship, we developed innovations that improve clinical workflow and productivity.

What We Did

Our team created a case study of the ProMedica Health and Wellness Center project in Sylvania, Ohio. The center consolidated 11 ProMedica physicians into a single location. The study was conducted in two phases: existing and post-occupancy. View project summary.

The Business Case

ProMedica aimed to create a collaborative practice and care model by leveraging the building’s support spaces, effectively optimizing the usage of real estate.

The Challenge

Our team was tasked with the design of a building that could house a collaborative care model for practices that did not share staff, space or a consistent operational model. We completed design diagnostics of existing clinical environments through interviews, shadowing, behavior mapping, environmental analysis and spatial analysis. The result was a standardized layout that maintained a consistent workflow for all clinical teams.

Walking Distance

36% REDUCTION – Average overall clinical team walking distance was reduced by 36 percent, or 1 minute and 55 seconds per patient encounter. That’s a difference ranging from 28 minutes to more than an hour during an average clinical day.

91% REDUCTION – Discrepancy between clinical team walking distances were reduced by 91 percent between clinical teams A and B.

Standardization and Modularity

Clinic modules are standardized and connected, allowing flexibility and growth. ProMedica will be able to increase overall clinic utilization 47-80 percent within the same physical space by leveraging the schedules of current physician as well as potential new hires.

Consolidation/Collaboration Model

When compared to the existing practices, the collaborative model of care reduces the space requirements of the combined physician practice by an average of six percent, saving the system about $641,000 in construction cost.

What the Findings Mean

To learn more about this study or any of our research, contact us at [email protected].

Holistic Design Workflows

Holistic Design Workflows

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What is the Aim 

Challenge
We researched the effects of advanced digital technologies on the architectural design, delivery and construction process. Challenges to implementation of technological advancements include: establishing a digital culture, understanding the economic benefits of digital advancements, establishing protocols for digital collaboration, loss of information and design intent under current processes, and streamlining design to fabrication.

Survey conducted by PwC with over 2,000 companies in the construction industry

Aim
Improve how architects work with engineers, consultants and contractors at each stage of the design process by integrating new methodologies that exploit digital techniques and manufacturing methods.

What We Did 

Approach
What do other industries (aerospace, automotive, naval, infrastructure, manufacturing, transportation, robotics) that deal with design, engineering and manufacturing challenges have in common? How can we bring interdisciplinary knowledge together?

How can we bring interdisciplinary knowledge together?

Method
We performed an extensive literature review of computational and analytical methods. We analyzed existing proven approaches that exemplify architectural innovation. We designed the Pavillon de l’eau, a pilot project of a metro station canopy in Washington, D.C. (Done in collaboration with SG+H to research cross-disciplinary integration of design and engineering analysis.)

What We Found

The use of next-generation platforms and tools had a significant impact on the design of our case study project. Collaboration with our engineering partners was optimized through our workflow.

Parametric Design + Automation

Deliverable
We created a report on our research and findings including case study projects and our pilot project that we used to test interdisciplinary collaboration techniques. View project summary. 

What the Findings Mean

Application
Apply these techniques and methods to projects where the greatest potential for this workflow can be achieved.

Future
This research did not focus on determining a prescribed workflow for use in future projects. The workflow used should be developed for a project with the goal of achieving the most efficient cross-disciplinary collaboration from the earliest stages of design through construction.

Acknowledgments 

Team Members:
Kevin Vandeman
Daniel Inocente

Research Partners:
HKS
Simpson Gumpertz + Heger – Structural Engineering
Win

Funding:
2016 HKS Idea Fellowship

Gen Z: Coming to a Workplace Near You

Gen Z: Coming to a Workplace Near You

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What is the Aim

Challenge
Workplace design continues to change or evolve as quickly as the generations that pass through them.  And often the work style preferences of tomorrow’s talent pool rarely match the spaces created for them today by corporate management. With the Gen Z population on a trajectory to be 30% of the U.S. workforce by 2025 and significant disruptions to the concept and context of “work,” we’re at the intersection for another wave of change in workplace design. It’s more than “will there be desks?” but rather, “what will be considered work and what kind of spaces and experiences support those activities?”

Aim
This study sought to anticipate generational preferences; identifying and prioritizing design solutions for this population as it enters and establishes the next generation within the workplace over the next decade.

What We Did 

Approach
We took an inductive approach to questioning by exploring “work” and “working” and differentiating experience both in and outside of class time. The idea is to use academic behavior as a proxy indicator of preferences for knowledge workers. Many questions differentiated current and ideal/future work environments and experiences. Findings intentionally highlight factors able to be influenced directly by design.

Method
From September 2015 to July 2016, an international and interdisciplinary team of HKS designers and researchers conducted an extensive review of previous research to inform the development and deployment of an online panel survey of 452 Generation Z-aged students (born between 1995 and 2000) with respondent representation from 47 U.S. states.

It’s more than “will there be desks?” but rather, “what will be considered work and what kind of spaces and experiences support those activities?”

What We Found

Preliminary Generation Z preferences highlight the following emerging (and surprising) insights:

Quiet and focused space at Bell Textron Advanced Vertical Lift Business Center in Arlington, Virginia

Deliverable
This project resulted in an executive summary, overall research report and two recorded presentations. View project summary.

What the Findings Mean

Some conservative and inconsistent responses suggest Gen Z isn’t as radical in their views of an ideal workplace or employment style as expected in terms of a low number of employers throughout their career. Flexibility appears to be a key issue as 20% of respondents would prefer to work from home and responses were nearly evenly split between preferring an assigned vs. unassigned seat. Providing spaces to retreat for focus will be a crucial satisfier. They voice a strong desire for employment certainty but with more generous work policies related to remote working and flexible location and/or hours.

Preferences illuminate a work experience (rather than a workplace) ecosystem starting with factors that directly impact recruitment and hiring: high priority intangible, organizational characteristics of employers (e.g., talented employees, good culture, flexible work hours, workplace cleanliness and acoustics). These relate to and must be supported by equally high priority, physical elements (e.g., network speed, hardware/software, in-office mobility) that may relate to work satisfaction and retention.

Preferences illuminate a work experience (rather than a workplace) ecosystem starting with factors that directly impact recruitment and hiring.

Workplace design should celebrate diverse employee identities. Gen Z is still discovering itself in terms of life stage and workplace presence. Fewer than 6% of survey respondents identified explicitly as Gen Z while 28% identified as a Millennial, the second most frequent choice behind “I don’t know” (44%).

Be sure to provide rather than sell basic expectations as benefits, e.g., collaboration, laptops, high-speed Wi-Fi, etc. Selling these things as perks can come across as out-of-touch. On the other hand, don’t focus on just the fun stuff with outrageous amenities. Gen Z isn’t looking for the lavish (<1% of respondents).

While our survey respondents would prefer to come to work to be with others—they find aspects of a collaborative workspace enjoyable—they prefer to work both independently and privately. Virtual connectivity has led our future generations into a nearly constant state of virtual connectivity, but the virtual realm is best realized in quiet, private settings. Perhaps this is why among our top descriptors of an ideal workspace were “calm, quiet and comfortable.” Our survey revealed that, just like everyone else, it is difficult for them to curb distractions in a chaotic, open workspace environment.

Gen Z value and, to some degree, expect variety and mobility. They value being present in their workplace and in-person communication, but they also need quiet focused space. Position the concept of focus to meet their self-reported needs for privacy. These can be phone (1-person) and focus (1-2 people) rooms shared within the workplace rather than private offices or working from home.

Show value by investing in orientation and onboarding experiences. This helps set the tone and workplace experience for all the organizational values that they came to the company. Similarly, provide programmed professional development opportunities. This more on-demand and pre-arranged model allows for new employees to work on their work and instead of extra-curricular efforts.

For OneSource Virtual in Dallas, Texas, we designed the space to meet the needs of a multi-generational workforce. The environment supports a variety of work styles and balances a need for customer privacy with open-door access for employees.

Top 10 Workplace Priorities for Generation Z*

  1. Fast Network
  2. Talented Employees
  3. Hardware/Software
  4. Competitive Benefits
  5. Flexible Schedule
  6. Good Culture
  7. Daylight Access
  8. Cutting-edge Technology
  9. Environmentally Responsible
  10. Short Commute

*Of the 19 attributes assessed within Physical, Organizational or Amenity categories, surprisingly on-site wellness facilities, on-site fitness, health features and urban location did not make it on the Top 10 list as part of the Physical and Amenity features category.

Future
What fuels the fire of Gen Z? Ethics, sustainability and philanthropy will play an increasingly important role in competitively recruiting top talent as this generation expects the values of their future organization to align with their own. Based on our survey findings, if Gen Z workers are not able to find an employer offering matching values and practices, they may decide to go off on their own.

Understand that professional development will most likely involve a diverse range of experiences beyond traditional classroom training, conferences and networking happy hours. Consider offering or encouraging more experiential learning opportunities like pro-bono work in the community or external boot camp technical training.

Also, consider further study of educational environments from which these new hires have as experience as they will use as a reference when gauging the success of their transition into the workplace environment.

Acknowledgments

Team Members:
Angela Ramer
Donna Sharpe
Lisa Adams
Elisa LaPaglia 
Josh Tooill

Funding:
HKS Idea Fellowship