Taking a leaf out of Facebook
IST METZ GmbH has established its position as an attractive and modern employer over the past few years with the introduction of flexible working hours, multiple product awards and an altogether fresher image. However, this medium-sized company in southern Germany has not only polished its external image, it has also worked to improve employee collaboration and morale. Last Christmas, for example, employees received iPad minis as their reward for a successful business year. The company is now looking to successful US Internet companies for inspiration.
There has been a hint of Google or Facebook evident in the halls of IST METZ GmbH recently. These Internet companies started the trend for feel-good working environments, leading to a more productive and better performing workforce. With spacious common rooms that offer healthy distractions and individually designed workstations, the Americans are leading the way when it comes to workplace design. Nürtingen's IST METZ was impressed by this concept and decided to follow suit with a new common room for employees, which has been open since 3 June.
The approx. 200 square metre "bISTro" is a combination of staff kitchen, break room and lounge. In addition to a large selection of hot and cold beverages, there is plenty of room here to relax and chat with others. There is also a separate smoking area and free WiFi for personal use during breaks. Employees have the chance to unwind with a pool table, a pinball machine, two dart boards, table football and a Playstation. The name "bISTro" was one of the suggestions put forward by an employee, crowned the winner following an internal vote.
"At IST, there has always been great emphasis placed on maintaining personal contact. The way we see it, we haven't reinvented the wheel, but we have created a place that encourages a good working atmosphere and a greater opportunity for personal exchange," explains Dirk Jägers, Managing Director of IST METZ. Together with Lord Mayor Otmar Heirich and Chairman of the Works Council, Dieter Bernecker, he opened the new room on 3 June.