SPS Tower celebrates unveiling of Women Who Code floor

by | Nov 26, 2019 | Business Growth, TeamSPS

On Friday, November 15th, 2019, SPS Commerce celebrated the grand reveal of its fully reimagined 8th floor at SPS Tower. Highlighting inspirational and historical women in technology, the WOMEN WHO CODE 8th floor opened for normal operations on Monday, November 18th, 2019.

This collaborative multi-month renovation effort was kicked off in July by NELSON, an integrated, award-winning architecture, design, and strategy firm based in Minneapolis. Greiner Construction was the General Contractor for this project.

Over the last ten years, SPS has worked with NELSON in transforming many areas of its Minneapolis headquarters into more user-friendly, relevant workspaces.

A transformation inclusive of employees & vendor partners

The newly remodeled 8th floor will serve as a home base for our Community Solutions Management team within Customer Success.

Thanks to the efforts of over 20 vendor partnerships, SPS was able to open the floor more than a month ahead of schedule to welcome over 160 guests from SPS Commerce’s global offices for its 2019 all employee Growth Summit, held the week of November 11.

The rebuild is unique in that the new floor footprint accommodates 120 employees, about 60 employees short of what a ‘typical’ floor at the SPS Tower holds, allowing for a greater variety of space options for employees to work in –– think less ‘me’ space and more ‘we’ space.

The SPS WiT group played a pivotal role

Early on in the renovation process, the SPS employee group, Women in Tech (WiT) expressed a keen interest in creating a unique theme for this floor, one that celebrated the pioneering efforts of notable female coders in paving the way for other women in technology.

The WiT team pitched WOMEN WHO CODE to the renovation team, which included SPS Commerce CEO, Archie Black, the SPS leadership team, and its partners at NELSON. There was unanimous agreement that the theme would not only inspire SPSers at the corporate headquarters but also visiting employees from around the globe.

Women WHo Code - Glass Cube

WiT had full freedom to research and narrow their list down to a list of pioneering women who would represent each of the conference rooms and common areas throughout the floor, trailblazing women who code from a variety of industries and eras. A vote was conducted to narrow the list, and the following women were selected for representation:

  • Hedy Lamarr
  • Katie Bouman
  • Grace Hopper
  • Sally Ride
  • Mary Jackson
  • Bletchley Park
  • Lynn Conway
  • Li Fan
  • Katherine Johnson
  • Anita Borg
  • Annie Easley
  • Megan Smith
  • Radia Perlman
  • Fei-Fei Li
  • Joan Clarke
  • Dorothy Vaughan

Rooms Named after Women Who Code

Beyond a desire to create more holistic spaces for employees to work, this floor renovation presented a unique opportunity for SPS to call greater attention to inclusion and diversity within the workplace, something very near and dear to SPS Commerce, CEO, Archie Black.

Promoting growth and inspiring employees are hallmarks of Black’s management style. From throwing periodic employee celebrations to encouraging cross-pollination of workers among departments.

“SPS Commerce continually strives to deliver a rewarding workplace where our people feel motivated and valued. This collaborative 8th-floor renovation is a great example of our diversity-centric approach, highlighting women who have been strong examples for other women seeking to enter the technology field. We have a strong focus on diversity and inclusion at SPS, and we’ll continue to build upon that in the coming years.”–– Archie Black, CEO, SPS Commerce

Women Who Code 8th-floor fun facts

  • The floor utilizes what is called a “biophilic” design approach, shown to help reduce stress, improve cognitive function and creativity, and improve well-being.
  • The library contains wallpaper reflecting EDI document code. The EDI docs that were suggested by SPS Community Solution’s Management staff and include QR code that allows employees to learn about the backstory on the document and its relevance to SPS.
  • There are nods to women who were honored throughout the floor in all of the conference rooms and collaborative spaces –– from coding textbooks written by Radia Perlman to children’s books on Grace Hopper.
  • A NASA Women in Science Lego set is proudly displayed in the west area Computer Library, along with tributes to the strong women of NACA (later to become NASA) that were a part of the West Area Computing Unit at NACA.
  • Photographs procured from online sources of Katherine Johnson and Grace Hopper, along with quotes about strong women by Anita Borg, are displayed throughout the space.
  • Coral colored benches in the Susan Wojcicki, Joan Clarke, and Fei-Fei Li rooms are Burkhardt CODE benches. The carpeting in Anita Borg and Grace Hopper resemble barcodes displayed on the floor.
  • The new 8th-floor space is divided into “neighborhoods” or spaces dedicated to teams as part of a more human-centric design approach.


SPS Commerce’s goal is to remain a meaningful player in the retail space

For leadership, that begins with employees, which is why so much of the SPS vision centers on maintaining SPS’s reputation as a great place to work.

When you have great employees, the rest — a healthy bottom line, satisfied customers, and appreciating shareholder value — takes care of itself. SPS looks forward to continuing to evolve its footprint within the SPS Tower in unique ways that help its employees to be inspired, engaged, and do their best work.

As SPS continues to grow, our need for talent will also continue to grow. If you are interested in current openings at SPS Commerce, please visit our careers page for open roles.

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