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When hi-tech gets tactile: the QuantumBlack Client Lounge

QuantumBlack works at the leading edge of advanced analytics, transforming data into tangible insights and actionable strategies for clients around the world. You might expect such hi-tech alchemy to be forged in an environment replete with sophisticated electronic screens and not a scrap of paper in sight, but in actual fact this is a company that wholly embraces the tactile in its journey towards clarity and insight.

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‘Intelligence: Beautifully Engineered’ is QuantumBlack’s strapline, and it alludes to a functionality that has a quasi-aesthetic elegance. Operating at the intersection of strategy, technology and design, there is true beauty in how their data analytics work. Attaining this level of sophistication requires a high level of creativity and collaboration, in addition to superior technical skills to deliver outstanding results, and this is what inspired the design of their new office and Client Lounge in London’s West End.

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Emphatically non-digital
When architect and graphic facilitator Giuseppe Boscherini designed the Client Lounge at QuantumBlack’s central London headquarters, the brief was to focus on how clients interact and work with the company. It became clear that the client journey often starts in an emphatically non-digital way as processes, systems and challenges are described and understood; the technology comes in further down the road. Similarly, the QuantumBlack team needed a space that offered a strong counterbalance to the inevitable screen time required in a hi-tech industry.

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The Client Lounge is a highly agile space with mobile tiered seating, Wilkhahn conference tables with flip tops so they can be stored away, Ares Line chairs that stack horizontally and Spaceoasis® Working Walls – large-scale writable walls that can be moved around to act as space dividers or to create a huge canvas on which to write, display ideas and feedback. The furniture can be variously configured to accommodate client events, hackathons, ideation sessions, training and collaboration of all types including town-hall style meetings and conferences.

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Giuseppe Boscherini commented, “The Client Lounge is an intensely collaborative space. It was very carefully specified to provide maximum agility, flawless functionality with an urban industrial aesthetic. What we needed was a space that met the requirements for uninhibited creativity to enable big thinking. The Working Walls from Spaceoasis® help create an environment that invites comment and exposes ideas; there’s an immediacy to the feedback because it’s right there in front of you – all you need is a pen and you can contribute. The storage inside the walls also means when they are running a client session, where they need to extract value from every minute, they can access resources and props instantly.”

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QuantumBlack was acquired by McKinsey & Company in 2015. Born in Formula One and established to reimagine how organisations could continuously improve and outlearn their rivals, today, they are still fascinated by how the smallest edge or marginal gain can have a major impact. For further details view www.quantumblack.com.

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