What makes an amazing office space? VENTURE set out to find Australia’s most welcoming, inspiring, and fun offices you’ve ever seen.
Location: Sydney CBD
What they do: Makers of QuickBooks Online, Intuit is ranked number two on Fortune’s Most Admired Software Companies list for 2015.
Office features: An eclectic collection of furnishings supplied by small businesses reinforces Intuit’s commitment to help local businesses flourish. Intuit Australia’s headquarters features high ceilings, panoramic harbour views, and an eyecatching internal staircase. There is also a chill out room, three outdoor entertainment areas, and foosball and Ping Pong tables to help bring to life the team’s fun and dynamic vision that supports both work and play.
2: ROYAL WOLF
Location: Sunshine, Melbourne
What they do: Australia’s largest shipping container company renowned for its focus on product innovation
Office features: The company’s dynamic customer service centre is made entirely from shipping containers. It’s the only one of its kind in Australia and from the outside, may not look like your typical office, but it definitely wins points for innovation and brand synergy.
3: CATCH OF THE DAY
What they do: One of the first daily deals site in Australia
Office features: Just some of the great office features include a basketball court that is also used for Yoga and PT sessions, a gymnasium, a giant slide, bikes, a DVD library, a table tennis and games area, and plenty of modern breakout spaces with fun and funky furniture.
Location: Bay Road, Cheltenham
What they do: They make choosing a private health insurance policy in Australia simple
Office features: The company’s quirky offices—featuring a slide that travels outside then back in to transport employees to a ground floor café—were designed by V Arc, a leading practice of versatile architects, master planners and designers. Each floor features a faux running track around the perimeter, and meeting rooms include bright furniture in the shape of animals like dogs or ponies.
And when running around the track to different meetings becomes too much, iSelect offers several ways for its employees to recharge, including sleep pods for 15-minute cat naps, hammocks, free massage chairs, and an area outside with a BBQ to cook up a tasty treat.
5: COMMONWEALTH BANK SYDNEY
Location: Darling Quarter, Sydney
What they do: Bank and largest Australian-listed company on the ASX
Office features: Instead of permanent desks, there is a “home zone” for 70 to 100 people, which includes a mobile phone-free library, cafes, meeting rooms, and plenty of places to plop down with a laptop and work. Smart boards are never more than a few steps away, allowing employees to jot down ideas and plan presentations.
On top of being a fun, colourful environment to work in, Darling Quarter is also one of the country’s most eco-friendly buildings. The six-star-rated green building is currently on track to reduce its carbon emissions by 2500 tonnes a year and its water consumption by 90 per cent.
What they do: Landscape architecture
Office features: Clean lines and a mix of natural and industrial materials blend seamlessly in this relaxing environment, which has no doubt aided Oxigen employees’ in their creative endeavours.
The office itself may not have a slide or 100 beers on tap like many of the trendy locations do, but it doesn’t need to. The loaded bookshelf or the blue art installation hanging from the ceiling are enough to drive productivity and passion for the job.
What they do: South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute
Building features: The innovative, sculptural façade design appears transparent, showcasing the two atria inside the building. It’s designed to provide more daylight to the interior of the building, and reduce heat and glare.
SAMHRI’s building works well within its surroundings, accommodating all types of Adelaide’s public transportation as well as cycling and walking networks. It’s the first building of its kind—a laboratory building— to be a LEED Gold certified building. The project’s commitment to ecologically sustainable development (ESD) includes the passive design of the floor plates that respond to the internal programme, providing maximum daylight where needed.
What they do: Largest Australian investment bank and top ranked mergers and acquisitions advisor in the country
Office features: Both Woods Bagot—executive architect—and Fitzpatrick + Partners contributed to what some have dubbed the “vertical Greek village of the future” at Macquarie’s expanded digs in Sydney.
The expansion has allowed the company to accommodate 3,000 people into the workspace, meaning a lot of bodies have to fit comfortably in the 10-storey, 330,000 building. Each floor is divided into five “neighborhoods” that hold around 100 people. There are town centres in the middle of each neighborhood with themes based on current collaboration spaces like the dining table, library, garden, tree house, playroom, and coffee house.
Location: Martin Place, Sydney
What they do: Enterprise software company that develops products geared towards software developers and project managers
Office features: The company understands very well that a happy, comfortable employee is more willing to work hard, be productive, and do good work. So yes, there’s beer on tap, and a fully stocked kitchen to satisfy employees when they are feeling parched.
In the Martin Place offices, Atlassian workers can blow off some steam with fights to the death: via Nerf gun shoot outs or Xbox video game duels. Aeron chairs, pool tables, lunchtime sports, and after-hours poker nights all contribute to a pretty incredible work environment.
10: MOOSE TOYS
Location: Cheltenham, Melbourne
What they do: Branded toys for children
Office features: Toy testing rooms, table tennis, aerobics, a gym, and a custom staff lunch room features high on the list, but not as high as the cubby-house meeting room at the top of a beanstalk, or the basketball court. Walls are made of white boards for whenever inspiration strikes, and employees are given every opportunity to take a break when work has them frazzled.