Is this Singapore's most unusual office?

PHOTO: Is this Singapore's most unusual office?

SINGAPORE - Spencer Ogden, an energy recruitment agency, has opened its Asia Pacific headquarters in Singapore and its new office is anything but typical.

Is this Singapore's most unusual office?
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With a giant opium bed in the 'Not Bored Room', and a statue of a Mongolian warrior in the club room, Spencer Ogden's new office pays homage to the Southeast Asian region. 

This is the firm's eighth office in the world since it was founded in 2010. This year, the company plans to set up offices in New York, Brazil, Germany and South Africa.

Eduard Moix, Project Designer at Space Matrix, the design consultancy who worked on the project, says: "Spencer Ogden's Design Director believes that the whole design encourages productivity, collaboration and interaction at all levels."

"The design imports home and garden into the office space, with a 1950s style American diner kitchen and giant knights' tables alongside basketball hoops and an astroturfed floor."

According to Spencer Ogden, its Singapore office is designed to be attractive and comfortable, so that employees will feel like they are working in a luxury home. This encourages them to work harder and achieve better results.

Employees at the Spencer Ogden Singapore office also have free access to a swimming pool and gym facilities in the building, allowing them to keep fit and remain energetic in their day-to-day tasks.

With its focus on employee well-being, it is no surprise that Spencer Ogden has fostered a strong brand of loyalty among its staff.

Each day at Spencer Ogden there is a 'Power Hour'. During the course of this hour, employees are not allowed to sit down and have to be on the phone. According to the firm, this is a wildly popular activity among employees.

Another way worker productivity is encouraged is through celebration of individual deals. Every time a recruiter closes a deal, they are to play their favourite song on the office speakers and bang the office gong.

The company also holds frequent office dress-up days. Themes have included an 80s day, a 90s day and a superhero day.

Apart from office design, founder David Spencer-Percival also believes in providing incentives for employees to work better. 

Incentives at this company are to suit the tastes of its young and ambitious staff. For instance, if an employee hits his or her targets three months in a row, the employee will be entitled to spend one week working in a remote office in party capital Ibiza. During this time, Spencer Ogden will pay for their flights and accommodation.

The firm has plans to buy an apartment in either Bali, Phuket or Macau to serve as a remote office for his Singapore team.


If an employee performs well over the course of a year, they can also enjoy a weekend being wined and dined in one of the world's most glamorous cities. Last year, 10 high-performing employees were given an all-expenses-paid trip to Las Vegas. This weekend alone cost the company $100,000.

If employees wish to work in an overseas environment, they may also move to a different office to work for a year. They will also enjoy paid flights, work permit sponsorship and up to 2 weeks in a hotel, so that they have time to look for appropriate accommodation.


The Singapore office will recruit for the Oil and Gas, Mining, Trading, Power and Renewables industries across South East Asia.

Spencer Ogden said in a press release this week that it is expecting its $61 million turnover last year to surge to $102 million this year.

To celebrate the opening of its Singapore office, co-founders Sir Peter Ogden (Chairman) and David Spencer-Percival (CEO) held an energy industry VIP launch party on March 19.


Founder Peter Ogden says: "Singapore is the super hub of the booming South East Asian energy market. We are seeing oil and gas, renewable energy and commodities trading firms flooding into the region, and this is set to continue.

"This is a crucial place for Spencer Ogden to be," he adds. 


Spending on Singapore Talent

Apart on its recruitment business, Spencer Ogden also has a training academy which offers a 3-month intensive training course.

"This is our secret weapon," says David Spencer-Percival. "We are hiring the world's top graduates and turning them into the best recruitment professionals in the industry."

Spencer Ogden plans to spend $50,000 on each graduate in its academy. With an initial intake of 20 graduates, the firm is looking to expand its team to 60 employees by 2014.

History of Spencer Ogden

  • January 2010 - Sir Peter Ogden & David Spencer-Percival start trading in London & Aberdeen
  • March 2010 - Launched Graduate Training Academy with funding for 50 graduates over 12 months
  • December 2010 - Finished first year on S$8.4m turnover and S$2.8m in fees
  • March 2011 - Opened Houston outpost office & placed 500th energy professional
  • December 2011 - Finished Year 2 on S$37.2m turnover and S$11.4m in net fees
  • May 2012 - Opened 4,000 sq. ft. Houston office, with a capacity for 50 Texan graduates
  • October 2012 - Opened Hong Kong office in order to enter the Chinese market
  • November 2012 - Opened Dubai office in order to enter the Middle Eastern market
  • December 2012 - Finished Year 3 on S$56m turnover and S$22m in net fees
  • January 2013 - Plans for Singapore super hub office and academy
  • February 2013 - Opened Calgary office
  • March 2013 - Entered The Sunday Times Top 100 Companies to Work For