For more than 85 years, the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) has been working hard to research, provide information about and treat cancer. Founded in Paris in 1933, the UICC now has more than 1,000 member organisations and is represented in around 160 countries. Together with the World Health Organisation (WHO), the Union also established World Cancer Day, for example. At its numerous international locations, the staff address a wide range of issues. These include global access to important drugs, the realisation of vaccination projects, the breaking down of prejudices and the dispelling of false myths surrounding cancer. Its work in Switzerland involves an unusually high level of teamwork. In Geneva, several organisations that are members of the UICC and are dedicated to cancer research work in one location. The Geneva staff were to relocate to a new office within the city: in future, fifty of them would be working in a modern office environment in a new building complex. The challenge was that on the one hand, the individual organisations intended to network and communicate whilst on the other hand, they also work independently in their own particular areas of expertise. Maria Barbara Leon, the UICC’S chief operative manager, was impressed by ASSMANN’S well thought-out concept. “We wanted enough space for open communication with each other. As a society that is dedicated to healthcare, it was of course also hugely important to us that our staff work in an environment that takes workplace ergonomics into account. ASSMANN knew straight away how to realise this.”

Perfect Mix

Hans Wermelinger from the ASSMANN office in Switzerland took over the realisation of the office design. The space to be furnished had a total area of 495 square metres over two floors®and included open-plan, shared offices and a modular meeting room. “The concept perfectly matches the requirements of the heterogeneous team,” Wermelinger says about his design. “Everyone is given space to retreat to but can also communicate quickly and easily with colleagues.” In order to respond to the client’s healthfocus, ASSMANN integrated the Sympas ergonomic sit-stand desks. The system features an impressive streamlined design. The motorised height adjustment mechanism makes it possible for the UICC staff to comfortably make the change from a sitting to a standing position. “We consciously decided to opt for an automatic mechanism to make it easier for our staff to change the desk height several times a day, if they want to,” says Maria Barbara Leon. To make the best possible use of the available space, the new sit-standelements were positioned together in groups of two and four. Another new UICC office highlight: each desk is equipped with a Pontis mobile pedestal that not only offers plenty of storage space but can also be used as a seat for short consultations with colleagues at their desk. Staff can sit comfortably on the cushion on top of the pedestal, and the colourful accents provided by the cushion covers lighten the atmosphere of this modern office space.

Staff appreciation

Thanks to its relocation to the new Geneva offices, the Union for International Cancer Control is now completely free to practice teamwork. At the same time, the ergonomic workstations support health promotion® – the same cause to which the organisation dedicates itself every day. “The concept idea, the design, the price / performance ratio®– everything is just right. If we had to make the decision about whether to realise the project with ASSMANN all over again, we would still come to exactly the same conclusion,” says Maria Barbara Leon, clearly happy with the outcome. She adds: “With the new office environment, we wanted to give something back to the staff who work so hard for the organisation every day. We have certainly achieved this!”

Since we are dedicated to promoting health, we also wanted ergonomic workplaces for our staff.

Maria Barbara Leon, Chief Operative Manager UICC

Within the scope of the UICC’s relocation to a new office building, the organisation wanted to create open-plan working environments for fifty of its staff.

Several organisations share the same office space. There was a need firstly for individual workstations and secondly for spaces that would facilitate communication. The workstations were also to be equipped with ergonomic sit-stand desks.

New office building

Specialist retail partner:
ORMA Swiss, Neuchâtel; Switzerland

Client details:
The Union for International Cancer Control is committed to the prevention of cancer and to supporting everyone that is affected by this disease all over the world.