PKF Cooper Parry, Park View, Blythe Valley Park, Solihull
Size: 17,810 sq ft
Duration: 10 Weeks
Project: Full D&B CAT B Fit-Out
Contract: JCT Design & Build
PKF Cooper Parry provide audit, tax, corporate finance, restructuring, wealth management, IT solutions and transaction services for private and family firms and are part of a global accounting network.
Pink bulls, tree houses and running tracks may not sound like the new home of an accountant but this is PKF Cooper Parry and this is Paragon – welcome to Parrydise.
“Disrupt, lead, make life count” – the watchwords of accountancy giant PKF Cooper Parry and the values that have led to the creation of another iconic workplace for them by Paragon.
Paragon won the Birmingham contract, which will see 120 people move from the old office in Edgbaston, having previously created a ground-breaking scheme at PKF Cooper Parry’s 26,000 sq ft Sky View ‘super-office’ at East Midlands Airport in 2013.
Dubbed “Parrydise” the new Solihull office features a Segway track, swings, a sports bar, themed meeting rooms, quiet pods, a well-being tent and collaborative workspace, as well as a large big pink bull in reception.
Unashamedly bold in its vision and delivery, the new office perfectly reflects the vibrant company culture at the firm, as Claire Ratcliffe, head of design for Paragon, explains;
“This has been a fantastic creative challenge for our entire team. We’ve worked very closely with PKF Cooper Parry before so that gave us a fantastic insight, but we wanted to ensure we were going to be creating something fresh, something that explores the boundaries and possibilities. That is the kind of thinking that has set PKF Cooper Parry apart from its rival practices and we wanted to ensure that the new offices were a part of that narrative – we too were ready to disrupt, lead and make our design count.”
PKF Cooper Parry’s ‘Sky view’ office is regularly listed as one of the coolest offices in the country.
With such a reputation, it is understandable that they wanted Park View to rival this. Their vision was a leading edge space to challenge the stereotype of accountants and rip up the rule book, making the clear statement ‘Make Life Count’.
Working with Paragon, they succeeded in that goal. Big time!
This was about so much more than creating an office. They wanted a space that clients also wanted to visit and simply hang out in. They also wanted them to feel the vibe and absorb the incredible energy in the building, reinforcing their company culture. As such, the space needed to be flexible, fun, collaborative and promote a winning atmosphere, whilst feeling cutting edge, bold, innovative and energetic.
It was crucial that the design encouraged creativity and free thinking, with flexible space, open plan and agile working, supported by technology and the latest office furniture. ‘Drop in and hook up’ areas were created to stimulate collaboration but also to ensure quiet focused work and private calls were still possible amidst the vibrant atmosphere.
More than 20 positions were created as a result of the firm’s expansion, with new roles in the audit, pensions and support services teams being filled.
The ground floor provides high spec office accommodation for 121 staff, including 9 partners/ directors and 31 managers with a 6:10 workstation:staff ratio. The solution includes meeting and training spaces, tea points and a full catering kitchen and servery.
A keen insight into the client’s culture and working practices had already been established but this was no time for short-cuts or complacency. We wanted to raise the bar again, creating another ‘dream workspace’ for PKF Cooper Parry.
The design team was carefully assembled and with no preconceived ideas, threw itself into the project with site visits to both facilities and constant contact with the client around what works best for them and what might be even better still. Collaboration was key, learning from all parties and potential end-users of the new space to deliver a design that not only looks and feels spectacular but also is in total synch with the wants and needs of the entire PKF Cooper Parry team.
“After months of planning and preparation it’s amazing to finally be in our new home and see all of the smiles around the office. We set the bar very high when we moved into our Sky View office in Derby, but I think we have managed to go one better with Park View.”
“We don’t like to think of ourselves as your average accountancy firm; we disrupt, lead and make life count. Our new Birmingham office perfectly embodies the ethos of PKF Cooper Parry and provides us with a great workspace reflecting the very latest in modern working to accommodate our every-growing team”.Ade Cheatham, Chief Executive of PKF Cooper Parry