Collaboration Helps Covestro China Earn Prestigious WELL Gold Award

Leading materials science innovator collaborates to enhance staff wellness, comfort, and performance

As we discussed in our previous post, collaborations that drive tangible sustainability impacts will be on full display during the four-day run of Greenbuild 2019 later this month. One notable example of the impacts of collaboration on green buildings is Covestro China’s new five-story, 10,438-square-meter headquarters at Crystal Plaza in Shanghai’s fast-growing New Bund area at Pudong district.

Covestro, a leading supplier of premium polymers and member of the American Chemistry Council, implemented an innovative C3 workplace strategy – short for Care, Choice, and Creativity – to optimize their China headquarters for wellness, performance, and sustainability:

  • Care. Reach the highest standards of health and well-being as demonstrated through WELL Building Standard™ with the WELL Certified™ Gold.
  • Choice. Adopt the latest activity-based workplace ideas for greater choice and flexibility on how the staff of 600 works.
  • Creativity. Celebrate the diversity and creativity of the Covestro China HQ staff to foster even higher levels of innovation.

The pioneering WELL Building Standard is the first rating standard to focus exclusively on the impact of buildings on human health and wellness. The performance-based system measures, certifies, and monitors air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, and mind in the built environment. Today nearly 4,000 projects in 58 countries embrace the WELL Building Standard.

To achieve WELL Certified Gold, the Covestro team collaborated with interior designers, manufacturers, and wellness experts. One notable feature of that process is how Covestro Office planners transformed the space into a “Museum of Materials” that showcases many sustainable materials from Covestro and its partners.

The 600 employees based in the new China headquarters enjoy an open concept office and flexible seating, while still having access to more private spaces for meetings and calls. Mental and physical wellbeing factored into the design, which includes a fitness center, massage room and meditation room. The collaboration area allows employees to work together while enjoying alternative seating, like a swing.

The senior vice president of the International WELL Building Institute Asia, Tony Armstrong, admires the work of the Covestro team. “It not only creates a healthy space, but also is the best practice for office space management and operation through details reflecting care for people, choice for work, and creativity for innovation,” he says.

The collaborative spirit informs every aspect of the Covestro facility. “It’s our employees who contributed their ideas to the design and the office is exactly what they want,” explains Holly Lei, president of Covestro China. “The new office echoes the company’s strategies of innovation, sustainability, and digitalization.”

In addition to the WELL Certified™ Gold, Covestro has joined IWBI membership program as a keystone member lately so to further partner with IWBI. Covestro is also seeking for further collaboration with IWBI on the subject of sustainable development.

By all accounts, the staff is delighted by the application of care, choice, and creativity. A recent post-occupancy survey revealed staff satisfaction tops 97 percent. One staff member pays tribute to Covestro’s corporate tagline: To make the world a brighter place, by observing “In our office, every day is a new and brighter day.”

To achieve a distinction as comprehensive as WELL Certified Gold requires a singular commitment to collaboration at every level of the organization. Covestro China demonstrates what can be accomplished when leadership and staff rally for a common result.