Bank Iowa invests in employees with new headquarters

Bank Iowa will prioritize an employee-centric culture with a plethora of perks at its new corporate headquarters in West Des Moines, Iowa.

“It can be tempting to build a space for the work, but we wanted to build for the people who do the work,” said Bank Iowa CEO Jim Plagge.

Plagge kicked off the June 27 open house, which was hosted in partnership with the West Des Moines Chamber of Commerce, with remarks at 4:15 p.m.

The new offices house numerous pieces from the Robert and Karen Duncan art collection. In addition, the couple has commissioned local photographers in each of the 22 communities served by the bank to create images of local landscape and architecture.

“Total employee wellness encompasses so many things, including emotional, social and intellectual health,” Plagge said. “Enveloping our space in art, which often represents the highest human values, drives right at the bank’s commitment to honoring the people who make our organization great.”

Support for physical health and wellness is another important part of the culture of Bank Iowa, which was recently named one of the Top 100 Healthiest Companies in America. Chief Administration and Human Resources Officer Kate Wolfe and Executive Assistant Aanna Hoch, who led the redesign of the offices in collaboration with Workspace, said the physical well-being of employees was an important motivator behind the build.

“Health and wellness has become an integral part of the Bank Iowa culture,” Wolfe said. “We have designed our new office location in West Des Moines to be purpose-built around continual movement and the maintenance of healthy choices.”

Individual desks in the Bank Iowa headquarters are integrated with a mobile app that allows team members to preset standing and sitting heights. 

The app also alerts users with reminders to change positions throughout the day. In addition to the app-enabled spaces, Bank Iowa team members have the option to work in collaboration rooms or single-person enclaves. 

“Banking is being dramatically reshaped by technology, and a lot of that change is really positive,” Plagge said.  

Other components of the healthy lifestyle incorporated in the offices include a wellness room, water refilling stations, healthy snacks, a communal Bank Iowa tandem bike and a bike storage rack for team members who cycle to work. 

“Yet when you think about the most meaningful transformation that’s happening now, it’s all around culture,” Plagge said. “By giving our team members an exciting, flexible, high-tech, but human-centric place to work, we’re empowering them to be critical thinkers, creative problem solvers and nimble innovators.”