Tag: Development

The coronavirus pandemic has changed the way a lot of people work

Earlier this year, many companies closed their offices and shifted their staff to remote work due to health and safety concerns. And while remote work has been a mixed bag, it’s also proven itself as a viable model for companies in almost every segment of the market.

That opens the door to a world of flexibility for companies going forward. But it also puts office buildings in real danger.

Office building demand could wane to a dangerous degree

When employees were first told to pack up their desks and work remotely back in February and March, many assumed it would last a few weeks. But now, nine months later, many companies are realizing remote work is a sustainable model, with the potential for major cost savings. If workers can maintain productivity from afar, businesses can spend less on office space.

A good 68% of large-company CEOs say they now plan to downsize their office space, according to a survey by KPMG. And that’s not just in response to the pandemic.

How to design a disability-friendly office

An all-inclusive, disability-friendly office design creates a safer, more comfortable and welcoming work environment for all, including disabled employees and visitors to your business.

By law, all businesses should provide an all-inclusive workspace that facilitates a safe and comfortable work environment for all employees, including disabled individuals.

As well as looking after employees by helping them to feel more valued and comfortable, a disability-friendly office design attracts a more diverse workforce and a wider pool of candidates, helping your business to attract more top talent.

Whilst some disabled employees may require specialist equipment, most disabled employees’ requirements can be met by simply taking accessibility into consideration when designing your office.

Here are some key features of inclusive, disability-friendly office design.

  • Accessible sockets
  • Adjustable desks
  • Cable management
  • Low lever door handles
  • Low flat panel light switches
  • Wide doorways and hallways
  • Task lighting
  • Quiet workspaces
  • Computer monitor arms
  • Large-print equipment controls
  • Use of ramps instead of stairs where suitable
  • Climate control

Whilst these design features are all disability-friendly, many of them will make your office a safer and more comfortable workspace for everyone.

Space should be a key consideration when designing a disability-friendly workspace, ensuring that there is always enough room for a wheelchair to manoeuvre.

All trip hazards and obstructions should be removed and tidied away, especially trailing wires and cables. Cable management systems are effective for keeping cables neat and safe.

Inclusive office design by Millennium Storage

Here at Millennium Storage and Interiors we provide office refurbishments and new builds to businesses of all different shapes and sizes. We design practical and inspiring office spaces that find the perfect balance between aesthetics and functionality.

Our designs are practical for all employees, with accessibility and inclusivity always a key consideration in our design process.

For help or advice with designing a disability-friendly office, or to book a free consultation with our team, give us a call on 01942 603 344.

What are the benefits of pallet shuttle racking?

Could a pallet shuttle racking system help your warehouse to save money and become more efficient?

The type of racking system installed in your warehouse has a significant impact on its overall performance. Your racking will affect both the volume of stock that you are able to store and how efficiently your warehouse operates.

Busy warehouses that experience a high turnover and are stocking and retrieving pallets very frequently may find that pallet shuttle racking can greatly increase their efficiency and productivity levels.

What is pallet shuttle racking?

Pallet shuttle racking systems use remotely controlled semi-automated shuttles to stock and retrieve pallets instead of forklift trucks.

The system can be operated as either FIFO or LIFO and will generally place the picked load in the first available free space.

Pallet shuttle racking is also suitable for use in extreme temperatures including freezer chambers of up to -30 degrees Celsius.

Benefits of pallet shuttle racking

  • Reduces the risk of accidents – Replacing forklifts with remotely controlled shuttles reduces the risk of collisions and accidents occurring in the warehouse.
  • Reduces operation costs – Using automated pallet shuttles can dramatically reduce operation costs by eliminating the need for multiple forklift trucks and operators.
  • Reduces repairs and maintenance costs – Improved handling and a reduced risk of accidents means less expensive damage to racking, pallets and goods.
  • Maximises storage space – Pallet shuttle racking helps to maximise the space available to you. The system requires less space than those that use forklift trucks, allowing for higher density storage.
  • Increases efficiency – Pallets can be stocked and retrieved quicker and more efficiently, saving your business both time and money.

To find out more about our pallet shuttle racking and whether it is suitable for your warehouse, give our team here at Millennium Storage and Interiors a call on 01942 603 344.

5 signs it’s time for an office refurbishment

A tired or outdated office could be having more of an impact on your business’ success than you realise.

Your office’s appearance can have a big effect on employee mood and wellbeing, directly impacting productivity, retention rates and even your business’ profit margin.

Look out for these 5 signs that your business could benefit from and office refurbishment.

The interior is tired, dark or drab

Does your office’s interior communicate the right message to employees and visitors? Faded curtains, stained carpets, and outdated decor can give the impression of a business that isn’t doing very well or doesn’t have high standards. Revitalising your office to create a space you are proud of and enjoy spending time in can also help to inspire and motivate employees and win the trust of clients.

Your business has re-branded

If your business has rebranded or your company culture has evolved, then refurbishing your office can help to reflect these changes and ensure continuity in your branding.

It’s feeling cramped or cluttered

A cluttered, cramped or untidy workspace can be distracting and demotivating for employees. If you’ve run out of room, or your office is beginning to feel claustrophobic, a refurbishment can help you to gain more space.

Employee morale is very low

Employees working in uninspiring or neglected spaces can feel undervalued and demotivated by their work environment. If morale is low, then productivity often suffers too, ultimately having a negative effect on your business’ reputation and bottom line.

Health and safety are being compromised

As well as creating an unpleasant work environment, an old and tired office can also pose a significant health and safety risk. Trailing wires, faulty electrical items, overloaded plug sockets, broken chairs and tables, and blocked fire exits are just some of the common health and safety issues that can easily be rectified with an office refurb.

Need some advice and help with refurbishing your office? Get in touch with our team here at Millennium Storage and Interiors to discuss your requirements and find out more about our office refurb services.

Is the colour of your office affecting employee productivity?

Colours can affect our emotions and influence our actions, so you should select the colour scheme for your office carefully.

Have you considered that the colour of your workplace could be influencing the mood, wellbeing, and subsequently, your employees’ performance?

Your office’s colour palette sets the tone for the mood within your office. A bright and colourful environment can stimulate and energise the mind, inspiring creativity. Whilst cool and muted colours can create a calm and peaceful environment.

Research into the psychology of colours has shown that different colours can elicit particular emotions and behaviours within us.

Consult our guide to the psychology of colours below to discover how your office is making employees feel and which colour you should paint the walls next.

Blue– When used in moderation within a professional environment, blue is said to be a stable and calming colour that encourages productivity.

Red– If you want to motivate and energise employees then red is an excellent colour to add to your interior’s palette. Red is said to create a dynamic atmosphere and can help employees to work more efficiently.

Green– Green is a calming colour that we associate with nature.

Yellow– Yellow is an uplifting and positive colour that can encourage creativity.

Purple– If you want to create a calm and thoughtful zone, then purple and violet can be excellent colours for encouraging spirituality and creativity.

Rather than going overboard with any of these colours, its best to introduce them to the office in muted tones or splashes of colour.

Why not use colours that reflect the different actions and behaviours you want employees to show in different zones within your workplace.

Need help designing an office interior that will motivate employees? Speak to our team of experts here at Millennium Storage and Interiors by giving us a call on 01942 603 344.

Mezzanine safety tips

Keep employees safe at work by implementing these four simple mezzanine safety tips.

Installing a mezzanine floorin your warehouse is a smart way of affordably gaining more floorspace.

Once you’ve had your mezzanine installed, it’s important to train employees in the safety rules and regulations surrounding how to use your new space safely.

As well as initial training, processes should be put in place to ensure that mezzanine safety is maintained ongoing.

Here are our top 4 tips for using your mezzanine safely.

Review your safety policy

After your mezzanine has been installed, don’t forget to review all existing health and safety policies and update them accordingly. Safety regulations surrounding your mezzanine should adhere to OSHA, be easy for employees to access, and actively communicated and implemented.

Keep it free of clutter and debris

Staff should take extra care to keep the mezzanine floor and staircase clean and free of clutter and debris. Workplace slips, trips and falls could often have been prevented if an area had been kept tidy and free of obstruction.

Designate a safety officer

All employees should be trained in mezzanine safety as part of their onboarding process. Having said that, it can also be useful to assign one or more people the role of ‘safety officer’, making it their responsibility to know the safety regulations inside out and ensure they are being adhered to.

Do not exceed load limits

Your mezzanine will have a maximum load limit which should always be adhered to. Make sure the maximum weight limit and person capacity are clearly visible and there are processes in place to ensure that they are never exceeded.

For more help and advice about how to use your new mezzanine safely, give our friendly team a call on 01942 603 344.

Brief Guide To Breakout Furniture

Ever heard of breakout furniture? If you haven’t then you’re probably not up to speed with the latest innovations in office furniture.

There’s a buzz word for most things nowadays and that includes a specific type of furniture called breakout furniture. Now before we go into breakout furniture we need to understand what a breakout area is in an office.

The definition is actually as the name suggests, a place to break away from the desk and hold informal meetings or take time out for a break.

So you may actually have a breakout space without even knowing it but for some or even most offices, the breakout space is little more than a battered old sofa someone moved from their house and a cheap coffee table.

Breakout furniture doesn’t have to be this way, however, when there is the opportunity to make these spaces livelier and engaging.

A well thought out breakout space complete with office pods or even booths where people can use their phones can make for a much more happy and relaxed work environment.

If you are planning to fit or plan a new office layout, give us a call today to discuss the options available.

3 Ways To Make Workspace A Happier Place

Returning to work after the summer holidays can be a depressing experience for some people. You get used to all that sunshine and miss all that relaxation. Going back to work needn’t be stress however and there is a lot you can do to cheer up your work environment…

Add some greenery
Office plants are all the rage as people like to see a bit of nature in their workspace. Being amongst plants and trees is supposed to be good for us and it’s easy to bring a bit of that into the office with a few potted plants.

Get a personalised mug
Personalised mugs are great for adding personality and humour to your tea or coffee times. You can have your mugs personalised to your personality so nobody is left in doubt over who it belongs to. They also look a lot nicer on your desk than a plain old mug.

Tidy up those cables
Cables can take up a lot of space unnecessarily. You can banish this issue by purchasing some cable organisers so that they can all be tied up and stored out of sight. You could even invest in a new desk which has holes in giving the cables somewhere to go. So many desks don’t actually have this simple method of keeping cables out of sight.

5 Things Not To Forget During An Office Fit Out

They say moving house is one of the most stressful things in life but office fit outs must rank fairly high on the scale for business owners who don’t plan first. So if you’re approaching your first office fit out, here’s some advice on the basics.

Make sure your fit out fits your business
You will be spoilt for choice when it comes to office designs, however the main focus should be on choosing a layout that fits your business. Hot desks and spaces designed for creatives who move around a lot with their laptops might be right for a marketing company but if you prefer your workers to be static, then you will need some good sized desks to keep them comfortable.

Declutter and account for extra space
You can’t expect an office to have the same space demands forever so it is worth remembering that storage space should be adequate. Your business if successful should grow over time and this will require extra space for storage and additional staff when required. It is also important to declutter so that your office isn’t designed around stuff that would be better placed in the nearest skip.

Don’t forget about technology
Office design creativity is at an all-time high just as much because of technology as it is as a consequence. Many gadgets are wireless these days and often slimmed down so you need far less space for wires. Unfortunately even the most efficient office machine will need to be connected up to the power at some point so make sure your office include enough provision for extra sockets.

Central London Office Conversions More Likely To Be For Housing

Commercial landlords are growing increasingly alarmed at the number of offices being converted to residential housing. Many have attacked the government’s policy on housing in Central London, which appears to be at odds with the need for more rather than less office space in the capital.

Apparently large areas of central London are being turned over to the housing sector as property prices continue to soar and residential property becomes more lucrative for developers.

Westminster for example has lost a total of 4.4 million sq ft of commercial office space in recent years. Commercial landlords fear that the lack of office space could put a lid on economic growth in the capital with businesses forced to look outside central areas for available space.

If the mass conversion of offices into residential property continues, it is almost certain to put the government on a collision course with business groups while in the longer term it will do little to solve the housing shortage in the capital.

The UK population and that of London continues to rise and this will only put further pressure on the availability of land for development. There are calls for central London to be treated differently to the rest of the country when it comes to planning to ensure that the correct balance is struck between commercial and residential buildings.