Olympus NDT Canada invests to support growth
EP&T MagazineElectronics Embedded Systems Engineering Software Optoelectronics Engineering industrial Nondestructive Testing testing
$37-Million CAD building improves employee work experience, begins immediate expansion of personnel with a focus on software engineering, electrical engineering, and electronics and mechanical manufacturing
Olympus NDT (Nondestructive Testing) Canada officially inaugurated its new office and manufacturing complex, built at a cost of $37 million CAD in the Michelet Innovation Zone, in Quebec City. The new site unites all of Olympus NDT Canada’s services and personnel under one roof, enabling the company to better respond to production demands and optimize its research and development activities in support of their extensive portfolio of industrial testing and measuring solutions.
Company executives from across the Americas and the global headquarters in Japan joined government and business dignitaries from Quebec and beyond to celebrate the facility’s opening and to recognize the ideal working environment that it represents. As a previous tenant of the Quebec Metro High Tech park, Olympus NDT Canada decided to invest in the creation of a purpose-built new facility that is more appropriate for the pursuit of its mission: to deliver reliable, cost-effective systems that help ensure quality, safety, and productivity for our customers.
“Our new building satisfies our operational growth objectives, and it also clearly advances one of our main areas of focus: the well-being of our employees,” explains Alain Laboissonnière, senior director of operations in Quebec. Quality of life for employees is the impetus behind the features that will make the new building the envy of many companies in the provincial capital.
A wellness-based work environment
The new 15 794 m2 (170 000 ft2) facility is equipped with a vast hall designed for systems integration – allowing space for large-scale industrial systems to be assembled on-site, as well as an air-conditioned workshop with cutting-edge machining tools for mechanical production. The areas designated for research and development, storage, reception, and shipping are much more spacious than before. Meanwhile, the new electronics manufacturing area is ideally adapted to the company’s operations and the server room is now far better equipped. The facility also houses several collaboration-conducive spaces to encourage teamwork, which is fundamental to the company’s activities; among these are a number of development labs, more than 40 meeting rooms each equipped with multimedia capabilities, and a 50-person room for employee training.
This new facility allows Olympus to offer its employees a range of services to contribute to their well-being; for instance, a cafeteria and multipurpose 400-seat dining hall, a well-equipped exercise room, several common areas, a patio with fireplace, electric vehicle charging stations, and reserved carpool parking. The entrance to the building welcomes visitors with distinctive features such as a ten-meter (32 ft) high ceiling accentuated by a two-story staircase and floor-to-ceiling mural. Built according to the highest environmental building standards, the building is designed to include two green roofs where gardens will add not only aesthetic value, but energy savings as well. The building’s orientation, interior design, and an abundance of windows optimize natural light. It is also equipped with a heat recovery system for ventilation and a water reuse system.
Allocation of space by department:
- Manufacturing and operations: 45%
- Systems integration: 20%
- Research and development: 20%
- Administrative services and common areas: 15%
In addition to creating interior spaces for meeting and collaborating as well as spaces that create a variety of different atmospheres, the architects designed outdoor relaxation areas for employees that line the bank of a small creek and bike path that run through the property. “Olympus has chosen this focus on well-being to preserve its values of innovation, excellence, respect, teamwork, and customer service,” states Valerie Lavoie, Senior Director of Human Resources and Administration.
There are currently 380 employees at Olympus NDT Canada. However, the recent move has allowed the company to begin an immediate expansion of its personnel, and recruiting is already underway. The company intends to increase its staff to more than 400 employees, with a focus on software engineering, electrical engineering, and electronics and mechanical manufacturing.