We recently moved from a scrappy office suite on Sterling Circle in Boulder, Colorado, to a much larger new space on Pearl Parkway. While moving from one office to another can be chaotic, our experience has been incredibly exhilarating and gratifying because it represents a new phase in Copper Labs’ ongoing growth.
Despite the significant curveball that 2020 threw in our direction, we kept plugging away to improve our wireless real-time energy management (WREM) platform. By joining the growing Siemens Connect Ecosystem, participating in the Oracle Industries Innovation Lab, enhancing the functionality of our mobile application and partnering with National Grid Partners to help utilities better manage energy demand and connect with consumers in real time, we felt like we were in a good place.
But we didn’t want to remain in that place — we want to keep growing! Our new office gives us the space to manage the exponential growth we are anticipating.
The Right Space at the Right Time
Although we handled working remotely for the last year-plus well, we were already stretching the limits of our previous space. Each new hire meant we wouldn’t have all been able to be in the office at the same time. Initially, we thought that orchestration would be OK as we navigated the post-COVID-19 hybrid world of work, but not having the entire team in the same place at the same time is less than ideal.
Consequently, we took advantage of the high amount of current commercial vacancies in beautiful Boulder and began looking for a new office space that allowed us to both improve our work environment and plan for significant growth. And we found the ideal spot.
This polished and comfortable new space is not only an outstanding upgrade for our team, but it would also allow us to triple in size without having to relocate again. Located just west of 55th Street on Pearl Parkway, our new office is more than five times the size of our previous space and is equipped to meet our evolving needs.
The Features that Make Our New Office Stand Out
In addition to the freedom and adaptability this much larger space provides, our new second-floor office space also features floor-to-ceiling windows with awesome mountain views, flexible boardrooms, elevator access and a convenient location with lots of multimodal access and just a few minutes away from the Boulder Creek Path.
While there’s a significant amount of positivity and enthusiasm surrounding the new office space and what it will enable us to create as we continue to grow, two characteristics stand apart from the rest.
Dedicated Hardware Lab
At Copper Labs, we build intelligent software that integrates into inexpensive hardware that wirelessly reads electric, gas and water meters. Having a dedicated hardware laboratory will only increase our productivity as we continue to bolster our solution.
Our new office space is furnished with a dedicated hardware lab in which we can rapidly prototype hardware designs with desktop CNC machines, test our hardware against production meters and ultimately build sophisticated hardware electronics in house.
Vintage Game Room
When our team needs a break from building grid edge intelligence that empowers utility companies with the information they need to engage consumers with actionable insights that manage peak demand and accelerate energy efficiency, our vintage game room is the ideal spot to relax and blow off steam.
Because our founder and CTO Jeff Mathews enjoys restoring vintage video games in his spare time, Copper Labs’ new break room has become a miniature arcade with four machines from the ‘80s. A wonderful place to chill out, play games and take a break, the room also features a console table, an overhead projector for newer consoles, comfortable seating and a lava lamp.
In the process of finding a new office space, we intentionally considered convening our entire team in one central location to rebuild some of the in-person team dynamic that was put on the back burner during the pandemic. And this new space has immediately accelerated our technical productivity and company culture.
As a small team building sophisticated technology via integrated hardware, firmware and software, doing so from a variety of remote locations was difficult. During the first week in our new space alone, I witnessed teams increasingly gathering for stand-up meetings in conference rooms, collaborating on problems and walking over to our CTO’s office for assistance.
Even better, this new space has allowed us to immerse our new hires — and reengage the rest of the team — in the Copper Labs culture. From weekly taco lunch and an ongoing tab at a local taqueria to our golden taco trophy to reward hard work, tacos are a staple of our company culture. As we hire more people, bringing those individuals into an environment where they can actually be around the core team and understand how we all work together is going to be much easier than through Zoom.
Having an office where new people can come in, become engrossed in our culture, understand our style and get the help that they need to onboard is really important, especially as we look to significant growth over the next year or two.
Bottom line, our new office has helped position us to grow and evolve. We’re now able to iterate faster and communicate and collaborate more effectively, and we have the necessary space to accommodate our next phase of growth. As we continue to grow the business and raise more capital, this new space ensures we have all the room we need to hire as many people as we need to create a more sustainable energy future.