NATIONAL PHYSICAL LABORATORY

DRIVING COLLABORATION AT THE NATIONAL PHYSICAL LABORATORY

The overview

NPL were looking to update its existing estate with technology that would help its 800 employees work more collaboratively and optimise their time, but also provide flexibility and longevity. We installed over 20 interactive display screens in the centres' meeting rooms to enable scientist and engineering teams to work collaboratively on their ground-breaking research projects. As a result, staff have been extremely impressed with the new technology. Its encouraged productive meetings and boost confidence levels when hosting external meetings.

The challenge

The National Physical Laboratory, or NPL for short, is the UK’s national measurement institute, a world-leading centre of excellence for the measurement of national standards for the UK, working in harmony with the rest of the world. It operates the world’s most precise atomic clock, the same clock that sets and keeps track of Greenwich Mean Time.

Known for employing some of history’s most eminent scientific minds, such as Alan Turning, Robert Watson-Watt, and Sir Thomas Stanton, NPL is currently home to 800 of the world's brightest scientists and engineers.

The National Physical Laboratory is based in a 36,000 square-metre purpose-built measurement building, which boasts 388 of the world’s most extensive and sophisticated measurement laboratories.

As part of a twenty meeting room technology refurbishment, NPL chose AVMI as its technology partner to help deliver a solution that would enable the ultimate collaboration experience, taking into consideration budget requirements and the need for flexibility.

The solution

We worked closely with NPL's IT team to scope out and specify a solution that would enable scientists and engineers to work collaboratively on ground-breaking research projects but also meet the institute's particular business requirements.

A solution that supported a clean and clutter free environment alongside flexibility and consistency were key requirements.

Advising on the available technologies and working within a strict budget, we presented NPL with a range of interactive meeting room solutions. “We looked at a number of screens including flat panel, interactive touchscreens and whiteboard solutions, and we were won over by the Clevertouch Pro” said James Endersby, Head of IT at NPL.

Faced with the challenge of installing screens into non-standard meeting environments, which comprised curved windows, concrete floors and unconventional room angles, AVMI used floor-to-ceiling poles to mount the majority of the Clevertouch screens.

In total, twenty-one 4K ULTRA HD 86” screens were deployed across twenty meeting spaces to create the same user experience across the estate. Two devices are mounted to mobile trolley’s which can be used across campus in ad hoc meetings and the other nineteen are mounted in the meeting rooms.

The most important element for NPL choosing the Clevertouch Pro was that the device is an all-in-one solution, requiring no additional boxes or cabling.

The device has a built in wireless system that connects to a dongle, enabling staff to access files directly from the network, run presentations, white board ideas and save and share work across multiple mobile devices, instantaneously, without having to plug into any external devices.

Furthermore, the Clevertouch Pro, being built around an android operating system, provided the opportunity to make changes to the hardware, software and firmware, giving NPL the ability to shape the device into a bespoke solution tailored to its needs. This means that NPL has the flexibility to add or customise the devices without being restricted due to software and licencing upgrades.

The result

Employees and visitors are welcomed by clean but well-arranged meeting spaces equipped with an advanced but intuitive collaboration solution which reflect the values of NPL; ‘keep it simple, whilst delivering technology as required’.

National Physical Laboratory has also seen significant improvements in meeting efficiency, “everyone really likes the work we’ve done in the meeting rooms,” said James Endersby, Head of IT at NPL, “they tell us it’s enhanced their ability to hold productive meetings and they now feel more confident about bringing people in from outside”.

What’s more is the device provides the flexibility and longevity from a solution that NPL initially required, the ability to add or remove particular elements should their requirements change.

KEY BENEFITS

  • Meeting spaces are clutter-free and look great
  • The device is very intuitive, easy to use and connect to
  • The solution is cost effective but also provides longevity and flexibilty

We have some of the greatest minds working here at NPL and it’s important we give them the technology they need to work collaboratively on projects and help them optimise their time

Head of IT, National Physical Laboratories