Health and Wellness Take Center Stage at CSB

Designed to enhance the employee experience and strengthen collaboration, CSB’s new operations center earned the first Platinum WELL v2 pilot Certification in New England.

As companies chart their plans for a return to the office, business leaders are seizing the opportunity for a broader conversation about the future of the workplace. Beyond finding the right mix of office and home-based work, SMMA clients are prioritizing new options to revitalize the workplace and support the health and well-being of employees. 

“A lot of the initial return-to-the-office discussion was focused on the real estate questions such as how much space would companies need, and where that space should be,” said Marie Fitzgerald, Principal and Commercial and Corporate Studio Leader at SMMA. “More recently, the conversation shifted to employees, and to how we can create a new type of office experience that is healthier and more satisfying for everyone.” 
Servery and dining area at Cambridge Savings Bank operations center

Pursuing the WELL Building Standard

For Cambridge Savings Bank (CSB), a mutual bank with more than 400 employees and $5 billion in assets, the plan for an office relocation, beginning three years ago, provided the spark.

“Our initial focus when we began looking at new office locations was on improving collaboration,” recalls Dan Fraine, Senior Vice President, Facilities at CSB. “Our operations and administrative teams were spread out across three different locations, which is challenging. We knew how important it was to bring everyone together, and in the process, bring them together in space we could all be proud of. That led us to thinking about new and healthy ways to benefit employees.”

Interviews with CSB staff strengthened aspirations around health and employee wellness. When asked about what kinds of amenities and onsite features they would like to see in the new operations center, employees consistently cited fitness, healthy food choices, and outdoor spaces.

These suggestions aligned with the initial design program developed by CSB and their design partners at SMMA. Health and wellness also fit well with CSB’s company culture and its long history of sustainable and healthy practices. The bank was the first financial institution to earn Energy Star certification for its facilities, and CSB consistently invests in sustainable and environmentally responsible practices such as installing geothermal wells, energy-efficient lighting, and photovoltaic solar panels. 

 

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Outdoor patio at corporate offices of Cambridge Savings Bank

Being a mutual bank, we take a long-term approach to the growth and values of the business. We reinvest back into the communities and we invest back into our employees, and into employee safety, wellness, and wholeness, so that we can serve our communities better. By pursuing and earning the WELL Platinum certification, it helps every employee see in a tangible way what the investment and commitment to their health and wellness means for them.

Wayne Patenaude, President and CEO, Cambridge Savings Bank