Exciting times—Boden’s new concept leads to retail construction excellence

Boden's Challenge


Boden is a UK-based direct retailer of premium casual apparel. Since 1991 they have built a loyal following of customers through their catalogues and e-commerce site. However, until recently they had no presence on the high street.


Now Boden are in the process of developing a new design concept. They previously had just one bricks-and-mortar store in King’s Road, Chelsea. In 2017, Boden commissioned their first shopping centre store. It was to be an eclectic, heritage-infused concept of 3,764 square feet, located in the new extension of the Westfield White City shopping centre in West London. As they are new to retail construction projects, Boden needed the right partner to guide them through the process.




Boden's Choice


Mark Jones, Store Development Director at Boden, explains:


'Retail is an exciting new channel for Boden. Westfield White City is the number one retail mall in the UK and so it presented us with an ideal opportunity to engage with the customer in an end-to-end format. We felt that Westfield had great synergy with the Boden brand and it was a very good fit from the customers’ perspective.


Iconic Project Management were recommended to us and we chose them because of their reputation for outstanding project delivery.'


Building The Team


Boden appointed Iconic’s Project Management team to manage the whole project delivery. Our first task was to listen to the client and their appointed retail design agency, Dalziel & Pow, to make sure that we had properly understood their requirements.


Our Director of Projects, Darren Hewitt, met with all the stakeholders. He ensured that everyone would be listened to and have their requirements met.


Boden had young and vibrant delivery team who wanted to make a statement on the high street. Therefore it was essential that Darren understood all their differing requirements. These included IT, Facilities, Marketing and Visual Display. Darren did a great job of mediating between all parties to guarantee that everyone was going to be delighted with the outcome.




To make a project successful, the right team must be in place. Darren oversaw the tender process and appointed ISG as the perfect main contractor. They would ensure that the project would run on time, within budget, and with the high-quality finish that Boden desired.


Iconic also provided a dedicated senior project manager to ensure that Boden had exactly the right level of support. In some of the big, commercial practices, you find that the directors carry out all the negotiations but then, once the contract is signed, junior staff are the ones doing all the work. What makes Iconic different is that the same agreed project manager will oversee every single step of the project, from beginning to end. This means that our clients receive the level of support they need with all the expertise they expect.


A Robust Plan


Once the project delivery team was in place, it was crucial to create a robust plan and get all the participants to sign up to it and commit to delivering it. Iconic have a proven track record of delivering projects within the agreed timescale and budget and this is due to the attention we pay to project planning. We know that if the plan is not deliverable, the client will inevitably be disappointed with the end result. We also take contract management very seriously to ensure that all participants stick to the agreed plan.


Fitting Out


With the right team and a deliverable plan in place, Darren guided all elements of the fit-out process. This included many bespoke elements such as:


  • Georgian-style mosaic flooring to the store’s entrance

  • timber engineered board for the main shop floor

  • ornate window bed tiles and inlay rugs

  • ceilings with feature mouldings

  • chandelier lighting fixtures

  • full mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) systems

  • fire alarms and sprinklers

  • an eye-catching double-height steel frame shop front with Crittall glazed windows



Managing Change


As Boden were still developing their concept, the design continued to evolve. Darren communicated effectively with Boden, Dalziel & Bow and ISG to ensure that the whole team worked collaboratively to adapt to design changes. This included re-sequencing the programme to avoid potential delays.


In the words of Kevin Dengate, Managing Director of ISG UK Retail, 'my team reacted to the evolution of the design, ensuring that the most up to date version of the Boden concept was built'.


Thanks to Iconic’s experience and expertise in retail project delivery, and our careful attention to project planning and contract management, the whole project was delivered on time and within budget. In fact, the whole build took just 7 weeks to complete.


Handover


Once the beautiful new store was fully fitted out and furnished we directed a seamless store handover. Iconic ensured that all snagging was completed to the client’s satisfaction. We provided training for the Boden retail team on how to make the best of all the features of their new store.


Boden was delighted with the finished product. So much so that they nominated it for the Retail Category of the NAS Awards in 2018, in recognition of a perfect implementation of the innovative design into the physical environment.


A final word from Mark Jones: 'Iconic are not your typical project management company. Boden have previously worked with large companies where you feel that your project is just a number to them. Iconic offer us a personal service with very good account management - there is always someone available to call. Above all, they give us excellent project delivery.'




Author


Elizabeth Hewitt

Director of Marketing at Iconic Project Management Limited. We specialise in retail, leisure and commercial construction: building or refurbishing your perfect premises.


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