WHAT TO CONSIDER WHEN MOVING INTO YOUR NEW OFFICE

Moving offices isn’t always that easy, it’s a good idea to start planning your move well in advance to ensure that you face no major problems and the office relocation runs as smoothly as possible.

Office Relocation gives you the flexibility to employ more people and it’s a great opportunity for your business to grow and improve.

This infographic tells you what you should consider when moving offices:

Moving Offices | Office Relocation | Office Space | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | Kent

Infographic supplied by www.officespace.com

With over 15 years of experience relocating companies on budget and on time. The Office Changes team can help you find the right office for your business.

If you would like to find out more information please do not hesitate to get in touch. Call us on 01444474728 or email info@officechanges.com.

COMPLETE OFFICE FIT-OUT PROJECT IN RICHMOND, SURREY

Who are Stopgap?

Stopgap is a marketing recruitment agency, which started it in 1993. They were the first recruitment company to focus on the diverse and dynamic world of marketing and digital.

About the project

Stopgap chose to partner with Office Changes, who completely revamped their old, tired office into a bright, modern space in Richmond, Surrey.

Wanting to stay in their office, Stopgap wanted to create a space showcasing their branding and add some character to the office. Office Changes was able to design and create a functional, modern office that accommodated to all employees, completed with sit-stand desks with a concrete MFC desktop finish, complimented with Perspex desk screens and pink fabric. Opting for sit-stand desks creates a more flexible space for staff, giving them the option to sit or stand while working.

Sit-stand desks | HiRise Desks | Height Adjustable Desks | Office Furniture | Office Design | Office Fit-Out | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | Kent

We incorporated lockers into the design, where employees can store away personal items and any equipment they may have to lock away overnight. We decided to finish the lockers with a random lay design using Stopgaps branding colours on some of the doors, so it wouldn’t overpower the rest of the office design. Finishing the design off with a brand new drinks area, for the Stopgappers to enjoy their Friday afternoon drinks!

Sit-stand desks | HiRise Desks | Height Adjustable Desks | Lockers | Storage | Office Furniture | Office Design | Office Fit-Out | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | Kent

Sit-stand desks | HiRise Desks | Height Adjustable Desks | Lockers | Storage | Breakout Area | Breakout Furniture | Wall Vinyl | Office Furniture | Office Design | Office Fit-Out | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | Kent

The Office Changes team thoroughly enjoyed taking on this office fit-out project for Stopgap, we are so happy with the end result and we hope that Stopgap enjoys their new home!

If you are looking to fit-out your office space and you need some help and guidance, please do not hesitate to get in touch, call us on 01444 474278 or email info@officechanges.com.

TIPS TO KEEP YOURSELF & OFFICE COOL DURING SUMMER

It is very important for your office to be cool during the summer months. Especially, as temperatures have rocketed over the last month and are looking to stay high throughout the rest of summer.

We have put together some tips that you can use to help keep your office cool…

Food

Your body creates metabolic heat when it’s breaking down foods, so when you have larger meals, your body produces more heat. So to compromise, eat smaller meals but more frequent so your body doesn’t produce loads of heat.

Stay Hydrated

A lot of people are guilty of not drinking enough water throughout the day, however, during the summer, it is even more important to consume enough water. Every day you should aim for 2-3 litres. This is because you usually sweat more, so make sure you drink plenty of cold water.

A simple way of planning out and keeping track of the amount you drink is putting a bottle of water in the freezer and as it melts throughout the day then you take sips of the cold water.

Keep them closed

If your office isn’t equipped with air conditioning, keep the blinds or curtains closed during the day, this helps to prevent the greenhouse effect.

Heat rises, so depending on your window layout, keep the top windows open as the hot air will leave through the top window, keeping the office cooler.

Still feeling hot?

If you’re still feeling hot and bothered, try running your wrists under a cold tap for five seconds every couple of hours or splash a bit of water on the back of your neck, as the cold water cools down the central veins by your pulse points.

Switch it off

Electrical equipment gives out a lot of heat. If you are not using a certain piece of equipment, turn it off. It not only stops producing unnecessary heat, but it will keep the energy bill down too.

If you would like any further help or advice on how to keep your office cool during the summer periods, please do not hesitate to get in touch, call us on 01444474728 or email sales@officechanges.com.

Written by Louise Fletcher – Work experience!

IS THE OFFICE KITCHEN THE HEART OF YOUR WORKPLACE?

The office kitchen has become an important area in the workplace. It’s an area where employees come together and communicate on a more regular basis!

Without a doubt, the office kitchen has evolved over the years, with a lot of inspiration being taken from home interiors.

Everyone knows the saying “the kitchen is the heart of the home” but is it the heart of the workplace as well?

We have put together some points as to why we think the office kitchen may be the heart of the workplace…

Informal meetings!

Being the central point of any office. The kitchen is the perfect place for an informal meeting, it’s a great place to invite clients to help them feel relaxed and welcome. It’s also a good way to gather your team together for any quick updates or announcements.

Office Kitchen | Office Refurbishment | Office Design | Commercial Kitchen | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | Kent

Building work relationships!

Allowing colleagues to go to an area and interact with those who on a day-to-day basis usually wouldn’t work closely with, will create a stronger workforce and will help the business to grow.

Eating healthier!

Providing an area where employees can store and prepare their meals, may prevent them from buying food every day from a shop. A kitchen helps to assist your employees to maintain a healthier diet throughout the day and saves them money.

Chill time!

The office kitchen can be used for some downtime so employees can re-energise and regain more focus before heading back to work. Adding games to the kitchen such as; pool tables and game consoles is a great way to get everyone away from their desks and helps to increase morale and productivity.

If you would like any help or advice on how to create the perfect kitchen for your business, then get in touch and the Office Changes team will be more than happy to help.

BIOPHILIA DESIGN: WHY YOUR OFFICE SHOULD HAVE IT!

What is Biophilia design?

Biophilia office design is focused on the connection between humans and nature within the working environment and when applied it helps to improve the space employees work in. Having numerous benefits to their health.

Why should it be incorporated into the workplace?

Biophilia isn’t about bringing plants into the office to make it look more aesthetically pleasing, it’s a lot more involved than that. Most people who work, work inside and may be restricted to natural light and nature. Bringing in natural elements into an office environment has been known to help reduce stress. Whilst also helping to increase productivity, creativity and well-being.

Does it improve the air quality?

Biophilia office design allows for better ventilation making it easier to breathe. Having plants placed around the office improves the level of oxygen, removing any bacteria or smells that may be trapped in the office. It helps to fight fatigue and helps employees to stay refreshed and focused.

Office Changes office | Office Design | Modern Office Design

It’s not just about having plants!

There are plenty of other ways you can bring nature to your office design, such as natural materials like wood or stones. You don’t have to go overboard, but you can be creative with how you bring those elements in. You can create wooden shelving or have stone decorative pieces.

A trend that seems to be on the rise in the office are living walls. If you would rather have one main feature for the office instead of lots of plants, this is the perfect option to choose without taking up too much floor or desk space.

Other ways you can bring in biophilia design:

  • Water features
  • Use earthy textures and patterns
  • Incorporate wooden furniture

If you are looking to improve your office space through Biophilia design, please do not hesitate to get in touch. Please call on 01444 474728 or email us at sales@officechanges.com.

WHAT IS ERGONOMICS AND WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?

Ergonomics is the process of designing or arranging workplaces, products and systems so that they fit the people who use them.

Good ergonomics will help to maximise comfort, safety and performance thereby increasing productivity and staff well-being and attendance levels. Assessments and collaboration with employees to ascertain areas requiring improvement are an important part of managing a workplace.

5 proven benefits of an ergonomic office environment:

  • Reduced costs, due to less sick days, and increased productivity
  • Improved work ethic and job satisfaction
  • Higher employee engagement
  • Increased performance and better quality of work
  • Better health and safety – creates a better safety culture

In an office environment, an ergonomic workstation layout is vital for employeesFrequently used items should be easy to operate and reach. Desks should be the correct size and height so that they are functional and provide enough space for employees’ legs, thus minimising discomfort. Chairs should be adjustable to take into account different body sizes and heights. Thought should be given to lighting; inadequate lighting or glare can cause eye strain and headaches. Temperature, humidity and noise levels are all key aspects to be considered when creating the ideal workspace. Too hot impairs concentration, too cold and employees can become stiff. Low humidity can cause dry eyes and throat, whilst high humidity can cause perspiration.

Ergonomics | Ergonomic Furniture | Office Furniture | Office Design | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | Kent

  • Office employees can be seated for an average of 8 hours a day. A well-designed chair can alleviate bad posture whilst regular breaks can improve circulation and concentration.
  • Height-adjustable desks are increasingly popular as they allow the user to sit or stand as and when necessary whilst working.
  • LED lights are known to reduce eyestrain and headaches.
  • A zoned heating / air-conditioning unit will enable employees to adapt the temperature to their needs.
  • Screens and acoustic panels provide privacy and can eliminate excessive noise. Partitions can provide quiet work areas and meeting spaces.

Top 5 tips for a comfortable workstation:

  • Sit upright in your chair close to the workstation and ensure your body is supported by the chair’s back support. Tilt the seat 5-10° downwards and sit with feet flat on the floor, or supported by a footstool if the floor cannot be reached.
  • Sit directly in front of the computer screen and keyboard to avoid neck twisting. Take regular breaks to stand up and stretch your legs.
  • Ensure all items are within easy reach so that you aren’t twisting or bending in an unnatural position at your desk.
  • Position screens at eye level (laptops should be raised and use a separate keyboard) and look away from the screen every few minutes to vary focal length and avoid eyestrain. Move the screens to avoid any glare or reflections.
  • Relax shoulders, and regularly check that they do not become tense or hunched. Arms should hang down naturally from shoulders and there should be a right angle at your elbow when using your keyboard. Avoid using keyboard or mouse wrist rests for permanently resting your wrists on while you are working.

If you are interested in bringing ergonomics into your office design, do not hesitate to get in touch. Call us on 01444 474728 or email sales@officechanges.com

PROS AND CONS OF HOT-DESKING IN THE WORKPLACE

There has been plenty of discussions as to whether hot-desking is a good or bad idea for the workplace. Hot-desking is usually more on trend with high activity based working environments. With hot-desking employees don’t have to stick to one desk and are able to have the choice of where they want to work. This type of trend is good for creating space but does it really encourage people to keep working?

We have put together some pros and cons as to whether hot-desking is a good or bad idea…

The Pros

Employee engagement

Hot-desking gives employees the chance to collaborate with one another, allowing everyone to feel more comfortable in the working environment. The more people can engage with each other, the more of a stronger team you will have.

Flexibility

If your business is fast-paced and people are always in and out, hot-desking is probably one of the best solutions. There is no point in allocating a desk for each person if they’re not there all the time.

Space efficiency

Hot-desking, not only saves you space but also saves you money. Having fewer desks, you can put money it to the business where it is needed the most. With hot-desking, you will need to invest in the right technology, both hardware, and software, so people can book out desks each day, allowing it to run as smoothly.

The Cons

Your health

When employees have a designated space in an office they are able to tailor their furniture to how they feel most comfortable. With hot-desking and the idea of moving around all the time, you’re unable to adjust to the furniture appropriately, which may cause problems in the long run.

You can’t personalise your desks

Some businesses don’t allow you to personalise your desk and have a clear desk policy. If staff are constantly on the move, they can’t make the desk feel like it’s theirs, which can make people feel as if they don’t belong.

Departments/teams may be separated

If you are working as part of a team, but there are no desks nearby, it will make it hard for a team to work together if you are constantly having to get up and walk across the office. It may cause a lot of miscommunication and some people may feel isolated from the team they are in.

It is difficult to say whether hot-desking will work for your business or not if you need any help or advice, Office Changes can help space plan your office to make sure that all needs have been taken into consideration.

RECEPTION AREA: MAKE A LONG-LASTING IMPRESSION

Does your reception truly represent who you are as a business? Is it an area you feel proud of? A reception area is your companies first chance to make a great impression. There are many ways in which this can be easily be done.

We have put together some simple tips to help…

Space

No matter the size of your business, there are many ways to create a professional and welcoming reception. Think sleek and modern up to date furniture. Eye-catching furniture shows your business is up to date with trends and you take pride in the companies appearance.

Colour

Changing the colour of the walls is one of the most inexpensive yet best ways to project personality into the reception. Depending on what feel you are going for; for a calming atmosphere – neutral or cool colours would be best. If you want to go for something more upbeat and happy, bright, bold colours would be great to use.

Decor

Decor and accessories are perfect for pulling the whole look together. Think, lines, textures, patterns and plants. Adding these elements to your reception area will help to portray the look you are going for. It’s the little things that will help inject your businesses personality.

Body language

The design aspect isn’t the only factor in creating a good first impression. A person’s body language is actually one of the greatest influencers when it comes to first impressions. You need to show how professional your business is. Keep your back straight, head up and maintain eye contact. Showing interest and starting a conversation with a visitor leaves a long-lasting impression.

If you need help designing the perfect reception area, get in touch with the Office Changes team today.

WOULD YOUR BUSINESS BENEFIT FROM AN OPEN PLAN OFFICE DESIGN?

Open plan office design trending

The open plan office design is becoming a very popular trend, it is quickly replacing the old-fashioned cubicle-like offices and most likely will continue to do so. Even though open offices have become more popular, they aren’t for everyone. Before deciding on having an open plan office. It is definitely worth considering the advantages and disadvantages it may have on your business.

The advantages…

Improves communication between employees

The idea of an open plan office is that all desks are together rather than apart, creating more of a team feeling. However, some businesses may prefer the cubicle-like offices as it may work better for them.

Removing all walls and barriers in the office allows an easier flow of communication between everyone. Being able to see and talk to your employees/colleagues helps to give that sense of community and support. Taking away these barriers will help make managers feel more approachable and easier to talk to for everyone.

Office Design | Open Plan Office | Office Furniture | Office Relocation | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | Kent

Money-saving

The open office design will definitely cut unnecessary costs, especially for smaller businesses. With an open office, you are able to provide employees with the correct amount of space and equipment. Already saving a large amount of money, on individual office furniture and office partitioning.

Design flexibility

The great thing about having an open plan office design is you don’t have to commit to one layout design. You have the ability to reorganise furniture whenever you want/need to have it. Having a flexible working environment allows the business to grow for the future.

The disadvantages…

Office Acoustics | Sound Masking | Office Furniture | Office Refurbishment | Office Fit Out | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | KentOffice Design | Office Furniture | Office Refurbishment | Office Fit Out | Sussex | Surrey | Hampshire | London | Kent

Distraction

One disadvantage that bothers businesses about changing to an open office design is the noise level. With a number of conversations happening around people throughout the day, both in person and on the phone, can cause staff to lose concentration. This doesn’t suggest that cubicle offices can stop the noise levels, but it does give a place to concentrate. However, with an open office, you can use sound masking and acoustic panels to help reduce the noise in areas.

No privacy

A lot of businesses prefer the cubicle-like offices for privacy. In an open office, it’s harder to have private conversations. Taking away the barriers, managers are able to keep an eye on staff at all times. The downside to this is that it could affect employees by causing them to feel anxious.

Germs and Illness

Open offices can increase the likely hood of germs and bacteria spreading throughout the office. With germs causing staff to get sick. Productivity will start to decrease, and staff will be taking time off work, which over time will affect the business. We all know that germs aren’t easily avoidable, but you can enforce the importance of handwashing and desk cleaning.

After considering this points, do you think that open plan is right for your business?

If you would like an open office design for your business, get in touch with the Office Changes team. Call us on 01444 474728 or email us at sales@officechanges.com.

ACOUSTIC PANELS AND SOUND MASKING FOR YOUR OFFICE…

Having trouble keeping noise levels to a minimum? There are simple yet effective ways to reduce noise through the use of acoustic panels and sound masking. It goes without saying that a workplace must have good acoustics to enable productivity, efficiency and creativity from employees. If not dealt with properly, internal noise can result in an echoey environment making it hard to hear and to concentrate, whilst external noise that travels into the building, such as traffic, can also cause enormous problems for office workers.  Similarly, if a workplace is too quiet, privacy can be an issue.

Here are some of our favourite products, that could be perfect for your office…

Sound Masking & Acoustic Panels | Reduce Noise in the office

Fabrics…

Fabricks are super acoustic bricks made from acoustic foam and wool fabric, designed to divide up spaces and help to reduce noise. Fabricks are very easy to configure and reconfigure without any problems at all. If your business uses hot desking, Fabricks offer the flexibility to change up any spaces within an open plan workplace by creating walls for meeting spaces and individual work areas, also you can choose any fabric colour of your choice allowing you to match the decor.

What’s great about Fabricks is that they are extremely lightweight, with a simple steel base and extruded aluminium posts; it is easy to specify and easy to build. The ‘house brick’ style gives interlocking rigidity to the design. Not only does it help to reduce noise, the aluminium posts also accommodate power and data cables.

Acoustic Ceiling Tiles

In panels…

These “In Panels” are easily inserted into suspended ceilings with profiles and supports that are able to hold their weight. Regular ceiling panels are normally used for reverberation control, adding these extra-absorbent ceiling panels can improve the performance of screens and can assist in reducing distraction in open-plan spaces.

Acoustic Wall Panels

Flap Panels…

Flap Panels have a rear chromed steel plate connected by an articulated spherical hinge to a chromed steel arm that can be mounted directly to the wall or to a ceiling. The hinges allow the panel to rotate 360° and incline in any direction, in order to personalise the aesthetic aspects and the acoustic performance of the product. Not only does it help with the masking sound, they also create a funky and modern finish to your office design.

It is important to assess all background noise from both external and internal sources and to determine the acoustic requirements of a space before implementing any of the aforementioned suggestions. Office Changes can assist you in doing this and provide suggestions and solutions for all your workplace acoustic requirements or problems.