BT's new Birmingham regional hub due to open early next year
BT Group today released images of its new regional office hub at Three Snowhill - as it announced the first colleagues will move into the brand-new building in the New Year.
Around 200 people will begin working from the site early in 2021, following the latest public health guidelines, with more arriving in phases over the following months. The office is expected to eventually accommodate more than 3,000 people.
The state-of-the art building will also be the first of BT’s future-fit offices in the UK to open as part of its ‘Better Workplace Programme’ - the largest workplace improvement and consolidation scheme of its type ever undertaken in the UK.
The investment will help BT to transform the way it works, create efficiencies and enable it to better serve its customers. The new office is also a sign of the company’s commitment to the Midlands, providing a major new hub site for the region and the best facilities and services for colleagues to thrive.
The first colleagues to occupy the building will come from a wide range of its functions. BT will ensure social distancing rules apply inside the building, as well as following Public Health England’s latest guidelines on Covid-19 to ensure people are kept safe. The company will be the main occupier of the 17-storey development, marking a major investment by the company in the UK’s second city.
The update comes as BT released new interior images of the building. The modern office environment includes smart building technology, flexible workspaces and collaboration areas. There will also be a range of catering options including a ground floor café open to the public, world class event spaces, and a large media screen in reception.
Hosts will welcome and support colleagues and guests on arrival and throughout the building, and there will be a variety of wellbeing facilities including an on-site gym, multifaith rooms and parenting rooms. In addition, there will be cycling facilities and even a ‘bike doctor’ available to encourage as many colleagues as possible to travel into work by sustainable transport.
Graeme Paton, BT’s managing director of Property and Facilities Services, said: “This year has been so tough on everybody due to the impact of Covid-19 and we know how acutely this has been felt in Birmingham. We believe in the power of our teams and want to give them the best environments to connect, collaborate, create and innovate.
“As the UK’s second largest city, Birmingham is a strategically important location as part of BT’s future. Despite the issues caused by Covid-19, our contractors have been doing an amazing job getting the building prepared so we can occupy it.
“We are pleased to demonstrate this sign of commitment to the West Midlands region and we’re so excited for our colleagues who will be the first in the company to benefit from the future-fit facilities and latest technology that are the cornerstone of our transformation plans.”
Under the five year ‘Better Workplace Programme’, first announced in 2018, BT will consolidate its footprint of more than 300 locations to around 30. The company has already announced several other future locations including Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Manchester and Bristol. It will also move from its current headquarters in London at St Paul’s to a new 320,000 square foot, 18-storey building near Aldgate East Station next year.
BT colleagues based at Three Snowhill will include those from its existing sites in Birmingham and the wider region. The company will also recruit a number of new roles into Three Snowhill over the next year.
Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “I am delighted that a firm of BT’s size and stature is making this move, especially at such a challenging time for the regional economy. It shows there is still a future for major city centre office blocks despite the coronavirus pandemic, and it is a real vote of confidence in the West Midlands economy.
“I look forward to welcoming the first tranche of BT’s employees in the New Year and seeing that number grow throughout the year as our city centres spring back to life.”
Paul Faulkner, chief executive of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, said: “This fantastic news is a great boost for Birmingham and the wider region at a time when we needed it most.
“By confirming their move to Three Snowhill, BT have underlined their confidence in the city and beyond. And there is the added bonus that their commitment will lead to new jobs being created.”
Wendy Sycamore, BT Group regional lead for the Midlands, said: “This is a really exciting time for BT in the region. Three Snowhill is an amazing workplace that will bring our colleagues together in a modern working environment that will facilitate and build upon the fantastic work BT is doing in the area.
“Birmingham is a really attractive city to work in for our colleagues and we will have access to a great talent pool in the West Midlands region. From digital infrastructure rollout and technology innovation to digital inclusion, BT is already playing a huge role in supporting the West Midlands economy and this will only serve to help expand and increase our ambitions”
Teams based at Three Snowhill will also benefit from Openreach’s full fibre broadband network investment in Birmingham, with more than four million premises across the UK set to receive ultrafast connections by March next year. Colleagues at the new office will also benefit from EE’s extensive 5G coverage in the area. According to independent testing from RootMetrics last year, EE’s 5G network achieved the highest availability in eight major cities, including Birmingham.
BT’s ambition is to increase efficiency and productivity, improving its ability to do the best for its customers. The Better Workplace Programme will deliver a combination of moves like this, into new offices, as well as the refurbishment of some existing BT buildings
BT Group plays an important role in the Midlands economy and is responsible for generating £1 in every £115 produced in the Midlands region, according to an independent report. It also generated nearly £2 billion towards the Midlands economy in Gross Value Added, during the 2017/18 financial year. BT Group employs more than 11,000 people across the Midlands.
BT Group is the UK’s leading telecommunications and network provider and a leading provider of global communications services and solutions, serving customers in 180 countries. Its principal activities in the UK include the provision of fixed voice, mobile, broadband and TV (including Sport) and a range of products and services over converged fixed and mobile networks to consumer, business and public sector customers. For its global customers, BT provides managed services, security and network and IT infrastructure services to support their operations all over the world. BT consists of four customer-facing units: Consumer, Enterprise, Global and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Openreach, which provides access network services to over 650 communications provider customers who sell phone, broadband and Ethernet services to homes and businesses across the UK.
For the year ended 31 March 2020, BT Group’s reported revenue was £22,905m with reported profit before taxation of £2,353m.
British Telecommunications plc is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange.
For more information, visit www.bt.com/about