Training academies are an important part of the corporate world. These academies provide access to a rich pool of talent and also equip professionals with the necessary resources to transition into various careers and build their professional networks.
In Nigeria, commercial banks have a considerably high number of training academies. In fact, out of the 22 registered commercial banks in the country, 17 have accredited academies. As the demands for better career experience increase, banks are beginning to focus on the learning experience of their people by investing in learning spaces that provide students and instructors with what they want and expect. A very good example of this is Wema Bank’s Purple Academy designed by Spacefinish.
For a long time, banks’ training institutes have typically functioned around rigidity. From their spatial architecture, learning modes, to furnishings, these spaces hardly allow for flexibility which is a core requirement for the learning space of the future.
In designing the Purple Academy, Spacefinish set out to create a state-of-the-art corporate learning space that is future relevant and user-centred by focusing on the following shifts:
A Flexible Space That Supports Active Learning
Recent research has shown that learning spaces that are flexible enough to allow users learn how, where and when they want will deliver more impact to professionals. By introducing elements like dynamic modular furniture into the design of the Purple Academy, Spacefinish ensures that users can enjoy endless configuration that accommodate peer-to-peer collaboration or focus work as their various learning situations demands.
Multi-functionality and Blended Learning
Corporate institutions need to reimagine their learning space to allow for blended learning which allows for physical and online learning experiences to take place at the same time. This will produce improved outcomes in the experience of students. The Purple Academy boasts of audio visual features like screens on the wall and ceiling mounted microphones to optimize the experience for remote learners. Also, the lecture theatre spots a collapsible wall that not only inspires users but also enhances the multi-functionality of the space.
Engendering Innovation Through Inspiration
Students and instructors want to be a part of something creative and inspiring. However, traditional learning space comes with a lot of inhibition in this regard by being bland and uninspiring. In designing the Purple Academy, Spacefinish infused copious inspiration touchpoints. The library in the Purple Academy reflects the influence of technology on libraries. To portray this, Spacefinish installed tablet-like bookshelves to show how educational materials can now be accessed through digital devices.
Wema Bank’s Purple Academy has shown that at a time like this, it has become paramount for corporate institutions like banks to reimagine their learning spaces. Through the intentional design of learning spaces that are flexible enough to promote collaboration and innovation easily, corporate institutions can be assured that professionals can become the best version of themselves.