Q&A: Pophouse Design Team Talks Rocket Mortgage’s Stunning New Marketing Office

Learn how the Pophouse design team created the perfect office for an award-winning marketing team.

By GR Chair

Photography by John D'Angelo

Alfred Barstools at corporate dining space.
This week we got the opportunity to chat with the ever so talented design team at Pophouse about the new Rocket Mortgage Marketing Office at One Campus Martius in Detroit. This moody agency inspired space is everything you want in an office and more!

With the pandemic making such huge impacts on how we work, office designs need to innovate and imagine new ways of fostering connection in spaces. Detroit-based Pophouse met this challenge head on and knocked it out of the park. Read about how this top-notch design team created the perfect office for an award-winning marketing team.

When you began this project, what challenges did you face as a design team?

The workplace designed for the Rocket Mortgage Marketing team in the One Campus Martius building in Detroit was built on the foundation of communication to foster and fuel human connection and innovation. This project was under construction when the pandemic hit, both halting progress and accelerating our design team’s need to adapt and evolve the plans we’d originally set forth. The concept of human communication and connection became even more important than imagined. Our team quickly shifted layouts, materiality, paths of travel, and signage and wayfinding in order to accommodate for an unknown future with both safety and wellness top of mind. We were able to integrate a variety of solutions to accommodate different workstyles as well as a hybrid team member presence, allowing the space to transcend now outdated office design standards. Flexibility within the environment encourages communication with the ease of access and inclusivity to all, whether onsite or remote.

There’s a wide variety of workspaces for all kinds of meetings, tasks, and technologies. What does your ideal workspace look like?

The ideal workspace celebrates a spectrum of space, incorporating designated zones for focus work, collaboration, and wellness. Users can choose how they’d like to work when they are in the workplace and the posture they prefer – heads down, lounge, meeting, social, etc. Furniture components can play a significant part in how these zones look and function. Adaptable products can support a variety of tasks and include integrated technology to support hybrid work. The ideal workspace is transforming into a destination for team members providing ample amenities, and a variety of furniture and types of space.

What drew you to the Alfred chairs and Stools in this design?

Within furniture specification and procurement, our team prioritizes human-centric design and inclusivity to create positive and impactful space for all users. The Alfred chairs and stools are the perfect blend of form and function. Their design is unique with subtle architectural lines that mimic some of the design language happening in other areas of the project. The layered upholstery details elevate the design allowing our team to specify contrasting fabrics to create a distinctive look and feel for each application.

What do you like about working with Grand Rapids Chair Company?

Our team has worked with Grand Rapids Chair Company and our local Detroit rep group for several years, and we’ve continued to receive outstanding support and build meaningful relationships with their teams. At Pophouse, we love to support American-made product using locally sourced materials, and Grand Rapids Chair Company is based is our home state of Michigan. Recently, we’ve had the opportunity to procure furniture for several projects within the Rock Family of Companies and across their Detroit campus. The Grand Rapids Chair Company chairs and stools bring a playful layer to each project with a variety of finishes that tie into each team’s culture and workplace design.

What tips do you have for imagining office spaces in this new era brought on by the pandemic?

Reimagined workspace should manifest as a destination for both productivity and culture, unite an organization, convey a sense of identity, and provide a spectrum of diverse work settings to allow for user choice and provide a sense of belonging and safety. A culture-driven space that considers the future of hybrid work will help drive productivity, yet also provide an equitable experience for all team members. Amenity programming should not be overlooked as health and wellness will continue to be a priority focus to support the restorative human experience within the workplace.

Future-forward workspace should include an accommodation of flexible layers of programming, respect to neurodiversity, integration of hybrid technology solutions, and a variety of congregation and individual space to support user needs and autonomy. The office should serve as a platform for communication, providing various nodes and methods for transferring information, communicating ideas, and driving innovation.