Over the past 25 years, Rieke Office Interiors (ROI) of Elgin has become the "go-to" firm for corporations, municipalities, school districts and others who want to update and improve their office environments in order to retain high quality employees and foster creativity and superior problem-solving.
Office designers on the Rieke team provide everything from floor coverings to furniture to lighting and even soundproofing acoustical materials, panel systems and signage, then well experienced account managers help companies through the complicated move or renovation process.
ROI's representatives look at a company's entire environment and workspace and ask lots of questions about needs and goals. Then they work to design a workplace that fulfills their ideals, retains high quality talent and conveys an effective message to customers and vendors who visit.
"Ours is a one-stop shop," explained Mike Warren, Workplace Culture Consultant for ROI. "We can design a space; design furniture to fit that space; manufacture the furniture to exact specifications; load it on our own trucks; and then install it with our own personnel. We also offer a lifetime warranty which says that if it doesn't perform as expected, we will repair or replace it for free."
"No other office furniture provider does this. They bring out binders and catalogs from manufacturers and help clients choose items that way, constrained by the furniture only coming in certain sizes. In addition, they cannot control the timeline because they aren't manufacturing the furniture. We have never missed a delivery date in the ten years that I have been with the company, unless the client wanted to make a delivery change, because we are making it in our own building," he continued.
"Our clients like Blue Plate, Wintrust, Echo, Berkshire Hathaway and Morton Salt are dealing directly with the factory so they are getting custom furniture to fit their unique needs and they like that," Warren added.
ROI also invests lots of energy and resources in the development of cutting edge office environment improvements for the future. ROI is constantly looking for what may influence the workspaces of tomorrow.
Todd Rieke opened ROI in 1992 as a used office furniture dealer. Three years later the firm had grown to the point that they were not only selling new office furniture, but they were also manufacturing it themselves. Today, ROI has a highly automated, state-of-the-art CNC-operated manufacturing facility.
"Ours is a $16 million per year business employing over 70 people. We occupy a 150,000-square-foot facility in Elgin and approximately one-third of it is devoted to manufacturing. Elgin is our only location and from here we supply clients all over the country," Warren said.
Located at 2000 Fox Lane in Elgin, ROI's on-site showroom is open to the public and features lots of inspirational spaces to give customers ideas for their own office suites. The showroom also continues to feature a great selection of used office furniture for those who want to save money. But for companies that are looking for a whole new look, Vertical Interior Design, a wholly owned division of ROI, employs eight interior designers who are available to work with them on projects large and small. Some clients come to ROI when first embarking on a construction program, so those projects can conceivably stretch for months or years, according to Warren.
"We currently have 13 sales people who work hard to cultivate relationships and understand each client's unique goals. Some are experiencing hypergrowth and they need to somehow make room for more employees within their current footprint," he said. "Others are transitioning into a new facility and want to construct a workspace where teams are able to collaborate differently than in the past."
"We seek to make our client experience innovative, collaborative, inspiring and exciting and that makes us different," Warren said. "Our website is filled with creative ideas to get them thinking. Some want to create a unique break room that will appeal to all generations in the workplace. Others want to have a little slice of Google or LinkedIn within their offices by adding unique amenities. But no one has asked to design a slide or a treehouse yet!"
"Other companies have located their offices in loft spaces and those can create unique challenges when it comes to configuring furniture around pillars and beams," he added.
ROI, as a cutting-edge office furniture manufacturer, is a sponsor of the Chicago Innovation Awards. For the second year, ROI is a sponsor of the Daily Herald Business Ledger Workplace Makeover contest, which will award $12,000 worth of improvements to an area business.
For 10 years, ROI has raised money for Easter Seals DuPage & Fox Valley through its lively chair volleyball event called "R-Game for Chair-ity." The event pits teams of six in office chairs lobbing the ball over the net in ROI's manufacturing facility in Elgin. Proceeds from the "fall-off-your-chair" fun event support Easter Seals' Positioning and Mobility Clinic, which customizes wheelchairs and equipment to give children with special needs maximum independence.