INTERNATIONAL – JPMorgan Chase & Co is tearing down walls and moving its San Francisco investment bankers onto “hot desks,” a space-saving layout that has long been a fixture at tech companies, while redesigning offices in Dallas and other cities.
Shared workspaces have been relatively slow to catch on at banks, but JPMorgan is following recent renovations by some rivals, which designers tout as cost cutting and productivity boosting. Still, bankers who covet the status and privacy of personal offices are in for big changes.
When JPMorgan renovated two floors at its Mission Street office in San Francisco last month, it replaced many offices with diner-style booths, designated quiet zones and communal tables for the roughly 250 investment bankers and other employees there.
Noah Wintroub, a San Francisco-based vice chairman of investment banking at JPMorgan who focuses on tech and media companies, said he lobbied for the open-desk layout, though it may be a culture shock for some.
“We have historically been very hierarchical. When you become a managing director you have this kind of office,” Wintroub said.