3M Norway recently moved its headquarters to a new building in the rapidly developing Lillestrøm area nearby Oslo, and needed a new Customer Innovation Center (CIC) to showcase its technologies to customers, suppliers, and its own staff. The company was simultaneously going through an organizational transformation and this infusion of new energy needed to be reflected in the new CIC. Having worked closely together with 3M since 2002, including designing CICs for them in Romania, Italy and Peru, to name a few, 3M trusted us with creating yet another one—this time in Norway.
We created a warm, experiential, immersive space with custom-made demo tools where 3M can meet with and build relationships with its stakeholders. The design is inspired by its Scandinavian context, yet it still highlights the global 3M values. The new CIC enhances the new direction of the company and facilitates the organizational change. The tailor-made solution integrates digital, interior, product and graphic design seamlessly in its interactive storytelling. We followed the project from conceptual planning through to installation, delivering the keys to the completed CIC.
The old CIC was a product-centric showroom with a vast range of products on display. For the new one, we took a more emotional and experiential approach, communicating a new direction in the company and reinforcing the 3M brand values. We created a welcoming space with warm colors and natural materials, including wood. The focus was on humanizing the 3M brand and facilitating relationship-building.
Instead of just displaying products on the shelves, we wanted to tell stories. Why are they important? How are they used? So we created interactive product stories that highlight the key messages of 3M in an engaging and entertaining way. Hands-on interactions with the products are supported by digital demo tools, with the effect of creating lasting, memorable experiences for 3M customers.
Our team handled every aspect of this 3M project: Experiential space designers created the space and the interiors, with support from our lighting designers, and product designers designed the custom-made furniture. Service designers contributed to the customer experience, the digital team created the demo tools, and graphic designers took care of the signage and design embedded in demo tools.
Thanks to our professionals with diverse skillsets, we were able to reduce friction, work faster and adapt an agile approach, working fast and closely together with the client as one team every step of the way from ideation on through to installation, ultimately handing over the keys to the ready-to-inaugurate 3M Norway CIC.
The new CIC allows the staff of 3M Norway to tangibly experience the new direction of the company. We used design to help facilitate gradual change. For example, to help ease the move away from the product-focused CIC, we created a clever drawer solution, which allows for storage of additional products.
The new 3M Norway CIC opened in September 2017. Hands-on experiences and interactive stories educate customers who come to the CIC about 3M products in an engaging way. The center also has a lounge for connecting on a human level with customers. Employees and customers alike can directly feel the re-energized 3M organization when they step through the doors of the new CIC in Norway.