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Reshaping the Workplace: Neiman Marcus Group Decentralizes

by News Desk

The Neiman Marcus Group is decentralizing its headquarters, enabling workers to utilize “corporate hubs” in the process of being established.

Officials told WWD that the majority of the NMG corporate workers will remain in Dallas, though hubs are being established in New York City, as well as in Bangalore, India, where the retailer has its shared services functions.

In Dallas, NMG is expected to receive $5 million in incentives to open a corporate hub in Tower at Cityplace on North Central Expressway just north of downtown.

However, the luxury retailer will maintain its three levels of office space at the downtown Dallas Neiman Marcus store. At one time, NMG’s headquarters were housed in four Dallas office buildings, two of which have closed, leading to some reduction in workforce. The company closed its Renaissance Tower and 1700 Pacific offices in downtown Dallas.

“We can confirm that the majority of our corporate associates are based in Dallas and that we have seen a slight decrease in corporate associates in the Dallas area,” a spokeswoman told WWD.

According to a spokeswoman, there are no plans to close the downtown Dallas store. “We are committed to that store,” she said.

Neiman’s will remain incorporated in Dallas but operate via different corporate hubs in key locations regionally, the locations of which will be revealed in the future.

Corporate staff for Bergdorf Goodman are housed in offices inside the store.

Neiman Marcus Group chief executive officer Geoffroy van Raemdonck is expected to relocate to NMG’s corporate hub in New York, which will enable him to stay closer to designers and vendors. His move was not confirmed by NMG, though one source said, “It’s a possibility.” Van Raemdonck has been dividing his time between New York, Dallas and Europe to attend the fashion shows and visit showrooms.

Every month, NMG’s leadership team meets physically at a different store around the country. For example, the team met last week in Florida, at the Bal Harbour store, as well as at the Coral Gables unit. Both are in Miami. They also held a town hall meeting with the Florida associates. Earlier this year another gathering of NMG leadership occurred in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Just this week, the city of Dallas agreed to provide the Neiman Marcus Group with $5 million in incentives to open a corporate hub in Cityplace, thereby remaining in Dallas, though the deal has not yet closed.

The Neiman Marcus Group has about 1,500 corporate staffers, and a total workforce of about 9,000.

In an interview in December 2021, van Raemdonck told WWD that NMG — like many companies in the COVID-19 era — established a flexible hybrid workplace arrangement which has helped attract talent. More than 30 percent of the corporate associates reside outside of Dallas, where the group is headquartered. NMG also bolstered its senior management team over the last year with appointments in innovation, product design, customer insights and data and digital strategy.

“We believe our associates should work where they have the most impact. We have hired people who are not based in Dallas,” said van Raemdonck, who became CEO in March 2018. “If you are a tech person and based on the West Coast, that is where you spend most of your time. You interact digitally with your colleagues, and at times you come into the office not to check email but to collaborate with everyone. That is very progressive. An incredibly central part of our philosophy is we want people to work where they have the biggest impact. Some roles are Dallas-based; some are not.”

Four of Neiman’s general merchandise managers and the Neiman’s fashion office are based in New York. Buyers are still based in Dallas, though they spend about a third of their time seeing shows and showrooms in Europe; a third of their time doing the same in New York, and a third of their time in Dallas.

For those residing in the Dallas area, “We don’t require them to be five days in the office. We encourage them to come in two to three days a week,” said van Raemdonck, during the December interview.

Due to the flexibility, “We recruit people faster. It takes 32 percent less time to hire and our turnover rate is down 20 percent, compared to 2019,” van Raemdonck said.

Geoffroy van Raemdonck
Courtesy Image.

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