Morgan Stanley Redesigns Offices for Millennial Workforce

The workplace needed to be designed around a much more dynamic, millennial kind of workforce says Morgan Stanley’s head of technology, Rob Rooney

Modernization isn’t optional for a firm like Morgan Stanley, said Ekene Ezulike, global head of corporate services. “The question is how quickly we do it, versus whether we should do it,” he said.

As little as 60 percent of Morgan Stanley’s work space is occupied at any given time, according to Ezulike, who said the changes will push that rate as high as 90 percent as options such as desk sharing let more people use fewer seats.

Despite the less stuffy dress code and other updates, Morgan Stanley shouldn’t be confused with a Silicon Valley startup, Rooney said.

“We’re not a technology firm, we’re a bank,” Rooney said. “We don’t sell technology, we sell advice.”

While there’s no kombucha on tap as there is at Goldman Sachs’s revamped San Francisco offices, there are common dining rooms, and the firm hired its first-ever community manager, Fiona Thomas. She helps plan office get-togethers and is overseeing a meditation event that was oversubscribed.

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