Background

IKEA

THE BRIEF
Johanna was contracted for six months to support the IKEA Expansion team based in Tempe NSW to create the design implementation guidelines for new IKEA stores in Marsden Park (Sydney) and in Canberra.
THE WORK
Develop brand guidelines for all communication within IKEA stores, including car park signage, customer guidance and in-store signage  to drive people strategically through the store, safety manuals, food handling guidelines, internal communication material and sales collateral.
THE CHALLENGE
The brand and communication material had to be compliant with strict regulatory and legal guidelines. It was challenging to bring visual creativity to the individual specifications of store’s architectural layout and taking into consideration the commercial direction of a store’s local area, which determines the product range based on the needs of surrounding residential and commercial spaces.
THE RESEARCH
A clear understanding of the purpose of pictures and signage, and where they would be situated, was essential in designing the guidelines for the installation of such items. It was important to know how signage would be ordered and produced so the guidelines would accurately instruct the team responsible.
THE THINKING
Johanna made it her imperative to understand each department’s communication needs and concerns. She tailored the visual communication accordingly to ensure it met corporate and industry guidelines and standards.
THE PLANNING
We first explored in detail the brief requirements – the communication needs of each department, guidelines and requirements – by consulting with relevant people in each area.
Then we developed ideas to approach each need and presented this information clearly back to the project team and area managers so we could progress these concepts as solid plans.
We prepared clear guidelines that were easy to comprehend with ready-to-use artwork for the implementation team to review and put in place, including a list of required materials for installation.
THE VISUAL THINKING
The IKEA brand style-guides presented design options and direction that Johanna had to re-imagine and adapt specifically for the Marsden Park and Canberra stores. The visual thinking was multi-dimensional and dynamic where designs were created across different mediums from wall space to signage and brochure.
THE PROCESS
Global blueprint documentation was provided for each area of the store that Johanna had to understand then adapt for the two locations. Working to such international guidelines required experience and skill in planning, creating complex graphic implementation guides, working within existing global guidelines and working within the large team required for such a massive project. Johanna used Adobe Suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign) and Microsoft (Word, Powerpoint, Excel).
THE IMPLEMENTATION
Working across all departments to produce the brand guidelines and communication collateral meant it was vital to have clarity and accuracy of information needs for each business unit. Johanna was also involved in the logistics and selecting suppliers for print and installation.

“It was such an enriching and valuable experience working with a large international team for work that spanned six Australian states and territories. I am very proud of what we achieved and the global scope of this project. It was fascinating to learn so much about behaviours and how people interact in such an iconic retail environment."

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