At the beginning of the pandemic we shared with you an update to our working practices. Today, almost six months on, we wanted to fill you in on what’s new here at OPD.

In short, rather a lot!

In August, we moved from our old location in Jericho at the edge of the city to a fantastic, bigger and brighter new space on Beaumont Street, just down from The Randolph Hotel and The Ashmolean Museum in the centre of Oxford.

The new OPD HQ is a beautiful Georgian townhouse that provides a lot more room for us to work safely as a team - an additional 1500 square feet in fact - with large work spaces spread across multiple floors and a much bigger workshop allowing plenty of space for prototyping and model-making.

As always, the wellbeing of our staff and clients is our top priority. Initially, back in March, the entire team worked from home and we were well prepared to do so - we have always used CAD laptops and a VPN to ensure that we can work together and share files securely from any location. Microsoft Teams has enabled us to stay in close communication and work together across projects. During lockdown, one member of staff was approved to drop into the workshop to take care of 3D printing and prototypes. In all, we were fortunate to be able to maintain the majority of our working practices.

But there’s no denying that there has been something missing - some magic lost in not being able to walk into a room with the team and a really difficult problem to solve, and to leave a few hours later with a solution.

In August, with new measures in place and plenty of hand sanitiser, we opened our new offices so that when the project needs someone onsite, we can make that happen safely. We update our Risk Assessment and Visitor Guidance every two weeks or every time the government guidelines change in order to keep the space Covid-secure.

We encourage our team members to work from wherever they feel most comfortable. When the project calls for socially-distanced collaborative work or a masked-up brainstorming session, some of us will head into the office, and then return home to get our heads down on individual tasks, project work and for meetings that can just as easily be held remotely.

While we can’t wait to have everyone back together in our shiny new office space, we are very grateful to have been able to maintain the standard of work and the quality of communication that we are used to - and which our clients have come to expect.

We hope you’re keeping safe and well, and look forward to showing you around the new space - virtually if not in person - very soon.


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