Oticon, workplace design, Smørum

World Class R&D Environment with highly sophisticated technical facilities with a rich offering of team work settings


Workplace design


Smørum, Denmark






18,500 m²


Oticon A/S


Jakon A/S, Carl Bro A/S
Schønherr Landskab KS



To support Oticon’s position at the technological forefront of the hearing aid industry, PLH undertook a major redesign of a newly built, but never occupied, production facility, and transformed it into a combined office and research & development center of international class.

Following an inspiring reverse-briefing from Oticon’s focus groups, PLH proposed a highly interactive process plan aimed at optimizing time, quality and cost. The process began with a vision-setting retreat with outcomes realized via separate, parallel processes for each main project component (building design and materials, technical facilities, shared facilities and furniture). The process itself, Oticon’s commitment to it, and the successful partnering with the lead contractor, enabled implementation of a far more ambitious project than was originally envisioned within the very compressed timeframe.

Paulette Christophersen
+ 45 2464 7133

PLH proposed several major changes to the building that made it significantly more functional and dynamic for Oticon. A more visible and welcoming main entrance was created on the axis of one of the atria, and in conjunction with this a guest café and courtyard garden was added within a new link building to the canteen. The technical facilities on the ground floor, along with the prototype workshop and other laboratories at basement level, were connected into one activity zone by extending the atrium down to the lower level. On the upper levels, the introduction of open innovation areas and cafés between the atria has given the expansive floors a central exchange hub, whilst creating the transparency and openness that Oticon desired.

To provide sources of inspiration for inventive thinking, a meeting room concept was developed based on iconic global symbols. These perceptions were captured using graphic imagery, lighting and varying material choices on the floors, walls or ceilings. The concept was also part of the way-finding design, whereby the basement spaces were inspired and named after continents and oceans, the ground floor after countries, the 1st floor after cities and the 2nd floor after destinations within cities.

Today, Oticon’s headquarter is a combination of highly sophisticated technical facilities (laboratories, sound studios, prototype workshops) with a rich offering of team work settings (open plan office environments, innovation areas, meeting places, lounges, and cafés).