Humanscale is focused on designing and manufacturing ergonomic products that improve the health and comfort of work life. The company needed to figure out a creative way to give visitors virtual access to its showroom in New York City - one that rang true to its brand.
We asked Art Director, Denise Figueroa, why they chose Matterport as their solution. But we also took the opportunity to learn more about Humanscale’s mission and how to make our spaces work harder to keep us healthy.
Tell us about Humanscale’s history in ergonomics and sustainability.
I became a fan of Humanscale in 2004 after reading an article in Metropolis Magazine which spoke about ergonomics, the human body and sitting. Humanscale has applied these principles to its products for even longer.
Humanscale was founded in 1983 by CEO Bob King with a focus on tools that support a healthy, more active way of working. We are now the leading designer and manufacturer of high-performance ergonomic products that improve the health and comfort of work life. Through leveraging new technology in functional yet minimal designs, Humanscale transforms traditional offices into active, intelligent workspaces. We are also committed to making a net positive impact on the earth as well as our customers.
When it comes to sustainability, our approach focuses not only on minimizing our negative impacts but working to produce significant positive contributions. Our goal is to make an overall Net Positive impact on the Earth.
For us, becoming Net Positive means incorporating manufacturing into our environmental and social solutions. It means taking a close look at what we make and how we make it. It means considering each and every resource required to manufacture our products. And it means finding ways to go beyond reducing our consumption—to give back, replenish, and continue making a positive environmental and social impact on the world. It makes me proud to work for a company that does more than talk the talk. You can learn more about how we’re walking the walk at Humanscale.com/about/csr.
What inspired you to capture Humanscale’s HQ in NYC?
In early 2019, I began researching VR renderings for a business opportunity. During the process, I’d hoped for the visual experience to have a photorealistic quality and feel true to life, but my experiences didn’t quite meet my expectations. We ultimately didn’t move forward with the project, but it left me curious about ways in which to share our showroom and products with potential customers. It was also important that the experience feel authentic to our brand and incorporate the idea of movement which is key in Ergonomics.
Fast forward several months to when the Marketing Team was well into planning updates to the Humanscale showroom in Chicago for NeoCon 2020, one of the largest trade shows in our industry, and when COVID-19 caused widespread cancellations of large social gatherings.
We needed to figure out a creative solution that gave visitors high-quality access to our showroom, virtually. Our CMO Leena Jain mentioned hearing about Matterport through an acquaintance and shared a link to the site. When I went to the site, I could instantly see the opportunity to keep our plans moving forward, even if in a slightly different manner. It was also exciting that you could create this experience simply by using a phone app, a unique bonus to the tool.
How do you plan on leveraging the digital twin of your HQ?
What I appreciate about the digital twin and the Matterport experience is that you’re virtually in our showroom! My hope is that folks are able to see our products in a new and interesting way and feel as if they’re actually exploring and moving through Humanscale’s HQ.
The idea of movement is authentic to our brand, and thanks to Matterport, visitors can take a tour from their own homes and at any time of day. The showroom is truly accessible 24/7. As a visual person, I think it’s great to be able to see products from multiple angles and different points of view within the space. It helps you envision what it might look like in your own space and provides real context.
With so many people working from home now, what ergonomic advice would you give?
I’m not an ergonomist, but having a great task chair is hands down the most important investment someone working from home can make. So, I’d recommend one of Humanscale’s task chairs. The Liberty Task chair is my personal favorite, but honestly, they’re all great. And I’d suggest folks watch the video made by one of our in-house ergonomists which provides some very practical advice on how to create an ergonomic workspace at home.