Sacha Walters-Gregory, Staff Reporter
Telecoms giant Digicel has officially began moving into its new 11-storey building in downtown Kingston.
When The Gleaner was taken on an exclusive tour of the environmentally friendly premises on Monday, chief executive officer of Digicel, Andy Thorburn, noted that staff are adjusting to the new environment.
With panoramic views mostly overlooking Kingston Harbour, the telecoms giant's new headquarters has the potential to invigorate the old with the new in the capital city.
"People are delighted about the natural light and the clean lines," said Thorburn of the Digicel staff's opinion of the new building. And a lot of natural light there is, with exterior walls of glass and covered with specially designed shades to create ambient temperature. The workspaces feature the ultra-modern open concept with only a few executive offices being enclosed.
The interior walls are emblazoned with murals that reflect Jamaican life, Digicel's new mantra, 'Be Extraordinary', their core tenets: Dynamic, Challenging and Dedicated, as well as a mural with pictures of the staff covering one wall of the main dining area.
Their meeting rooms also carry the Jamaican theme, being named in honour of Jamaican towns such as Kingston, Lacovia and Linstead.
The rooftop terrace is elegantly decorated with wicker chairs and glass-top coffee tables. One could really relax here, read the papers, enjoy a cigarette or meet a client. It is the perfect spot for the parties the company throws occasionally.
Designed with environmentally friendly elements in mind, rain water is used for irrigation and also to flush the toilets. The outfit of solar panels covering the annex buildings and wind power produces approximately 10 per cent of their power needs.
To create staff comfort, the company provides them with shuttles to take them from distant parking lots to the headquarters. There are three car parks, two on the premises and one in proximity.
"We're moving into a new building, but it's about the people, not building," said Thorburn, emphasising that for the company everything else is "business as usual".
The state-of-the-art store at ground level allows customers to wait in comfort for service and allows for privacy while issues are being addressed. The gadgets that make technology accessible to the masses include a large wall of touch screens where customers can take pictures of themselves and email them to friends on spot. Huawei tablets are also displayed for customers to play music videos and experience the technology.
"This is state-of-the-art; there's nothing else like it out there," said Thorburn. The store will open to the public on Friday.