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15 Modern Office Layout & Design Trends for 2017 by Jonathan Long

The startup and tech world is always ahead of the curve, especially when it comes to office layouts that encourage collaboration and creativity. Outdated office layouts that feature rows of desks and work stations are on the way out, and being replaced with more of an open floor layout consisting of comfortable and team-focused work areas.

Why has there been a switch to a more modern layout? Here are a few reasons why they work so well:

Improved Office Chemistry

When employees and team members work together daily, in collaboration-inspired work stations that feature multiple seats, it forces them to unite together to accomplish their goals. The office chemistry becomes a lot stronger than it would be if all employees sat in rows of cubicles.

More Creative Environment

From open floorplans to comfortable lap top work areas and game rooms, the modern office trends make for a much more creative work environment. Many companies will go the extra mile to make the office comfortable and branded to compliment the company culture. When employees are given a little more freedom to work from fun and comfortable areas, rather than sitting at a desk, the creativity level will rise.

Increased Employee Productivity

When you are able to make your employees feel more comfortable in their work environment it’s going to naturally lead to more productivity. When you are able to improve the productivity of an entire staff, it leads to better numbers, with revenue being the most important.

Enhanced Appearance

Transforming an office to a more modern feel immediately improves its appearance. The look and feel not only is appreciated by the staff and team members, but it’s a good look to show clients that your company is up to date on trends and constantly innovating.

Take a look at the infographic below to see fifteen popular modern office furniture and layout trends. If you are considering modernizing your work space, use it as inspiration to help transform your current office into a more creative and productive environment.

 

Author: Jonathan Long

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5 Things I've Learnt in 20 years from being in the Office Furniture Industry

5 Things I've Learnt in 20 years from being in the Office Furniture Industry

This week I started to receive a number of 'congratulations on your work anniversary' messages from linked in. Almost all of the messages were from people I have never met nor worked with (this is partially my fault for accepting linked in requests for vanity's sake).

After looking at my profile I realised I have been working in the Office Furniture Industry for 20 years and started to reflect on things that I have learnt both personally and professionally and decided to share these.

1) How did this happen? Unless you are a furniture designer almost every other person I have met in the industry 'fell' into it as opposed to chose it. However, with that in mind it is an industry closely linked to fashion and many of the people, companies and products are very smart and inspiring.

Message: embrace everything you do and you will find positivity everywhere.

2) People. Having worked on thousands of projects and with thousands of clients and customers the well trodden phrase 'people buy from people' is not only true in buying but also in selling. Clients who see us as an asset and partner with us tend to find their project outcome is always better and has more long term value.

Message: be nice and value people! It's still free!

3) Places. I wouldn't claim to have worked globally in this industry but over the 20 years Furniture in the UK has taken me pretty much from Lands End to John o'Groats and over to mainland Europe. Have had some very strange and interesting nights out in these places. Varying from being evacuated in the middle of the night in a hotel in Manchester overlooking the Coronation Street set and the same happening in Glasgow to being asked to buy Vodka for the contestants of Jeremy Kyle in the hotel bar - it's been eventful.

Message: whilst in a new place, explore and meet the locals!

4) Buildings. One of the perks of working in this industry is the privilege of having gone to some weird and wonderful buildings. From installing furniture in offices with no floor to 17th century listed buildings and meetings in stunning offices with priceless views of London, one can only be interested in the wonder of Architecture and Building design.

Message: Open your mind at all times and embrace every opportunity to enjoy the built environment.

5) Companies. Interestingly, whilst we have worked with many of the most well known and largest companies based in the UK apart from a name and an office it is the people within the companies (point 2) that are memorable and not the companies themselves. For any company that we have had a positive impact is always far more satisfying than a commodity/transactional deal as office furniture is hardly 'brain surgery' but as they say every job should be 'done with dignity'.

Message: It's all about the people.

In summary whilst like most things there are ups and downs the people that I have met over the last 20 years from both Client and the supply side are more memorable than the amazing products, buildings and companies that we have worked with. All that is left to say is that I look forward to the next 20 years!

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The Stoddart Review - The Workplace Advantage

All text here is taken from the Stoddart Review website: http://stoddartreview.com/

About the Review

The Stoddart Review - The Workplace Advantage

The Stoddart Review continues the work of an industry giant: Chris Stoddart, MCIOB, FBIFM. Formed by the British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM) and founding partners privileged to have worked with Chris, it exists to raise awareness among business leaders of the importance of the workplace and real estate as a key performance lever. It is independent and cross-industry in its perspective.

The Stoddart Review reveals that an effective workplace can improve business productivity by as much as 3.5%. Economist Duncan Weldon believes that could add up to £70 billion to the UK economy. But we may be missing a trick!

The Review found that British businesses often tackle workplace productivity by making the workplace more efficient, not the people. They think in cost per square foot, not revenue per square foot. And UK employees can tell. Only one in two agrees their workplace helps them to be productive*

We can’t afford to ignore them.

The Review – published to commemorate the work of industry giant Chris Stoddart, MCIOB, FBIFM – urges businesses and the workplace industry to question their workplace strategies now… and seize the opportunity to change how our people work for the better.

Click here to download the review

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Aeron Remastered

Herman Miller - Introducing the new Aeron - 20th October 2016

After two decades as the best-selling and most recognised performance chair in the world, I’m pleased to announce the launch of a new Aeron chair. While its iconic form has remained largely unchanged, the new Aeron is updated from top to bottom to incorporate the latest research around the science of sitting, as well as advancements in materials, manufacturing, and technology.

When the Aeron first launched in 1994, it was unlike any chair the world had ever seen. Instead of a padded throne, designers Bill Stumpf and Don Chadwick did away with foam and fabric to create a true machine for sitting. Uniting human-centered design with Herman Miller’s leadership in innovative technology and materials, Aeron quickly became a popular cultural icon with over 7 million sold in 134 countries across the globe.

However, the world Aeron launched into is unrecognisable today. As the workplace and the way people work continue to evolve, so should the furniture. For individuals, the new Aeron accommodates the widest possible range of activities and postures people adopt while sitting. It’s equally well-suited for a quick brainstorming session among colleagues or hours of concentrated focus at a workstation. For organisations, the cross-performance design makes Aeron suitable for a wide array of workplace settings, and the enhanced health-positive benefits will continue to improve employee wellness, satisfaction, and productivity.

I’d personally like to thank the original co-designer, Don Chadwick, along with the dedicated team of scientists, engineers, materials specialists, and researchers who have spent the past two years working tirelessly on this project. As Herman Miller continues its transformation into a modern lifestyle company, the new Aeron reinforces our worldwide leadership in workplace innovation and high performance seating, and will allow us to extend the Aeron franchise into the future.

The chair is available to order now in North America, Latin America and Mexico, the Middle East, and Africa. It will be available in the United Kingdom and Europe in January 2017 and Asia in February 2017. More information will be sent to you over the next couple of days.

I'd like to share my thanks with the team who have made this possible, and I am confident that the new chair will continue to be a huge success and inspiration to customers with your valued support.


Brian Walker
President & CEO - Herman Miller Inc
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Your Office Desk Setup - A Checklist

As we spend more time chained to our desks, metaphorically speaking of course (or maybe not), we increase the risk of health afflictions such as RSI. Because of these risks it is vital we do all we can, no matter how small the changes, to ensure we are set up ergonomically correct.

 Monitors

  • Positioning – How are you reading this? You should be focusing just below your eye line, if you aren’t then repositioning your monitor to suit your natural posture. Using a monitor arm gives most flexibility but for a cheaper option you can stack books underneath, although I suggest using those old Guinness Records books that you probably aren’t going to want to read anymore.
  • Glare – Avoid screen glare if possible by positioning your monitor away from sunlight. If this isn’t possible, and swapping your desk with an unsuspecting colleague isn’t an option, then purchase a glare filter for your monitor that will help reduce strain on the eyes.

Keyboard & Mouse

  • Positioning – Keyboard and mouse should be positioned so you are not over reaching. Likewise, avoid having accessories too close, ideally your wrists should be resting on the desk surface.
  • Wrists – While we are on the topic of wrists be sure they are resting comfortably. Many people feel the need for a padded rest that provides a soft surface.

Computer Units

  • Positioning – Computer units can take up vital desk space, so to benefit from more room purchase an under desk CPU support. This will also prevent you from accidently damaging the unit by keeping it out of the way.

Cable Management

  • Positioning – While not directly relating to the desktop ergonomics, unsightly cables can make an office feel cluttered and demoralising. Just check out these images below; which office would you rather work in? Keeping cables tidy also reduce the chance of accidently tripping over them.

Desks

  • Size – If you cannot fit all your equipment onto your desk then it’s not big enough. First rule, get a bigger desk. Secondly, follow the prior advice about positioning your equipment.
  • Adjustable – The jury is still out on the benefits of adjustable height desks. Personally having the option makes sense as you can sit and stand at your own will throughout the day. Unfortunately this will require an investment in desks as Guinness Record books are unlikely to provide much help here.

Seats

  • Set Up – If your back is hurting throughout the day then you either have the wrong chair set up, or you have the wrong chair all entirely. Personally I find the main issue with this is by now you’ve developed a sub conscious way of how you sit in a chair, and it’s probably wrong. So it’s about training yourself to sit correctly. Click here for a guide from the NHS on how to ensure your posture is correct.

Source CMD Ltd 

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Intelligent Design by Orangebox

Intelligent Design by Orangebox

The article below is taken from the Orangebox website (Orangebox being a leading designer and manufacturer of products that build a more agile business.

http://www.orangebox.com/

We understand that the workplace is changing, perhaps more rapidly than ever before, and the Orangebox portfolio is a considered response to the constant flux of influences present in today’s knowledge economy.

Our vision of the future working environment is based upon a customer centric approach to understanding and adapting to these influences, and continuous dialogue with our customers is the key to the insights that shape our future designs.

However, knowing that with a global economy comes massive diversity, we’re never arrogant enough to think that our own research has all the answers. So we’re constantly engaged in ‘researching the research’. Workplace surveys and reports from PWC, HOK, Gensler, the DTI and the Workplace Intelligence Unit, are just a few examples of publications that have helped us shape our thinking….

Work is becoming more collaborative. Developing internal networks & effective knowledge sharing within organisations are increasingly important keys to higher productivity. A communication culture is one important key to delivering the strategic objectives of an organisation.

Work has more than one mode. Space needs to be provided to suit a diversity of activities, be it for social interactions, group learning, focused tasks or collaborative teams. The most effective organisations of the future will provide all of these types of spaces with the balance that suits their workforce and purpose.

Technology is freeing us from the desk. The rapid development of portable communication and computing has created a new breed of nomadic, knowledge worker. People will increasing be ‘on’ work rather than ‘at’ work as the link to a fixed place diminishes for more and more of us.

Employees value good workspace. As we all become increasingly design conscious and spend longer periods at work, the quality of our workplace is of greater value to us. An organisation’s ability to attract and retain the very best people will be increasing linked to the environment it is able to provide.

Flexibility and agility are key. The increasing need to maintain competitiveness is increasing the pressure to reduce the costs of space and operations. Designing the workplace to be flexible and agile can facilitate higher densities of occupation, increase space utilisation and ultimately provide more efficient buildings.

Organisational sustainability that permeates every aspect of how we deliver our products and services will have to become the absolute norm. Businesses that lead the way today will be best equipped to meet the moral expectations, and adapt to the regulatory requirements & volatility of the business environment of the future.

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10 things YOU need to know about Buying a Desk

10 things YOU need to know about Buying a Desk

10 Things YOU need to know about Buying a Desk

I was once told that buying a desk (or more usually desks!) is merely a purchase of an anti gravity device to enable the pc/screen to not end up on the floor. Essentially this is true but there are some important things to consider when looking to kit out an office.

Single Desk or Benching

Do you require single desk units or shared units to enable less components to be used and the ability to add more users in should the need arise.

Cable Management

No cable management, a simple cable basket or a more sophisticated solution.

Leg Style
Basic cantilever, cable managed legs, sit stand or an aesthetic leg detail.

Stability
Cheap as chips with no certification or something to last with all of the British and European Standards. This is particularly important when you load the desks with IT, paper etc as let' say some of the units on the market tend to move from side to side involuntarily!

Division Screen
Clamped to the desktop or structurally attached via brackets to the beam structure if monitor arms etc are to be hung from the division screens,

Warranty
1 day, 1 year or 12 years! Generally most products are pretty robust but the better the warranty the more likely there is to be engineering support and a higher quality MFC worktop that does not easily chip will be used.

Brand
If your office environment is designed to send a message to staff and clients that you are serious about what you do then one of the excellent British Office Furniture Manufacturers will be more than adequate.

Previous Clients
If the dealer and manufacturer are able to demonstrate and ideally let you see/meet other clients who use the same product that you are planning on purchasing then this will add vital confidence that the products will arrive on time and to the right quality.

Environment
If the Environment is a consideration when purchasing then we would always suggest furniture that is manufactured here in the UK rather than imported by a UK company. British manufacturers are some of the best and lead the field in using every available material and process to ensure that as many components and raw materials are sourced as close to their manufacturing as possible. 

Installation
In my 18 years experience where installation is carried out there are a huge amount of installation companies out there but very few very good ones. The logistics and handling of the product is almost as important as the installation. Upsetting the other tenants in your building or damaging the interior of the building and furniture bringing the furniture in are all things to consider.

Luckily for you the reader we can help you with all of the above and enclose a link to the desking section of our website.

Thank You for reading,

Tim Scott
tim.scott@tsiworkspace.co.uk

 

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What Our Customers Say....

What our Cuistomers Say

We recently sent out a blind survey to a range of our customers past and present and this is what they said:

"TSI Workspace are both professional and extremely helpful. We would thoroughly recommend them."

"TSI have supported us for about 10 years. This is not just as a trusted furniture supplier, it also includes furniture advice and project management assistance when required. They give us the confidence to take on large relocation and refurbishment challenges together with supporting business as usual. TSI have also contributed to other projects for our parent company based in London on numerous occasions."

"I have used TSI Workspace a number of times in the past and I have always been impressed with the professionalism shown by all personnel involved in project."

"Amazing consultation process and we were blown away by the designs produced. Exactly what we wanted, but even better."

"TSI were very attentive to detail and keen to ensure the product was right for us from the onset. We only had a small requirement on this occasion, but we felt we were treated just as well as if we had a large budget. Personal and professional without being sales pushy. Would recommend them and plan to use again in the future!"

"TSI have come to our rescue after the collapse of a major supplier where
others have failed."

"From the design to installation every aspect of our requirements was addressed, particularly with storage. We now have a spacious and streamlined office space which everyone appreciates and though we chose white, staff take pride in keeping our modern look and maintaining a 'clear desk' policy at the end of each day!"

If you would like to join our lovely customers please click here to contact us to discuss any workplace or furniture requirements you may have.

Tim

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UK Workplace Survey 2016 from Gensler

I have just read the UK Workplace Survey 2016 from Gensler. Funnily enough I was not at my desk but in a Starbucks sitting at a tiny high bench on an uncomfortable wooden stool. However, for me personally having a change in an environment is highly beneficial when reading or learning as at 44 years of age sitting at a desk is still a place to work and not read or learn (they are the same things I hear you cry!).

In summary the report comes to three main conclusions:

  1. We need to take a more considered approach to the open plan.
  2. Expand workplace variety and choice.
  3. Match space to job needs and not role.

What does this mean for you?

  1. If you have an open plan office strategy you need the correct (and separate) spaces for individual and collaborative working.
  2. If you provide employees with a greater variety of spaces and allow them to use them, satisfaction and productivity will improve,
  3. Assign spaces based on job requirements and not hierarchy. 

To read the report in its entirety click here (its very short in reality!)

You will not be surprised to hear that we can assist you in implementing the findings by one of the Worlds most influential Architects and Interior Design houses. Click here to get in contact.

Tim

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5 Reasons why office design should be based on pubs

This is nice!

You may think it is strange that an office should be in pub but if you think about the difference in atmosphere between an office and a pub there is no real comparison. Obviously the presence of alcohol and friends could be a major factor in this but if we drill down to the basics of a pub then we could do well to replicate its ability to accommodate many types of people and situations.

  1. Settings. In a pub, standing against the bar, poseur tables, seating areas, both open and semi-private all co-existing together.
  2. Food and drink. The absence of these in many offices who may have amazing furniture of all types and settings but without at least quality coffee there is no reason to be drawn to these areas.
  3. People. As in an office there are many different types of characters but excusing the odd punch up in a pub, people are for social reasons much more relaxed yet in an office this may be stifled by politics of hierarchy.
  4. Time. Bearing in mind we spend up to half of our waking hours in an office there is a tendency for many to procrastinate all day and then start working at 5pm. When we used to have the 11pm deadline on last orders we were focused on getting the maximum amount of enjoyment in the 3 hours we were there!!
  5. Noise. There is research to suggest that too little noise can affect productivity as much as too much noise. Convincing a company to spend money on white noise is not easy as less and less people do their Dom Jolly impression in the Open Plan office.

If you think last orders are about to be called on your current working environment or you would like a fresh look at things, contact us here.

Cheers!

Tim Scott

tim.scott@tsiworkspace.co.uk

07976 427433

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Does your desking policy stand up?

Did you know that doctors are warning that sitting is the new smoking, and that individuals who sit for more than 8 hours a day double the risk of contracting heart disease compared to those who are sitting for less than 4 hours?

Gretchen Reynolds - Phys Ed columnist for the New York Times - wrote:
New science shows very persuasively that standing up about every 20 minutes, even for only a minute or two, reduces your risks of developing diabetes and heart disease.

By standing up, you cause the big muscles in your legs and back to contract, which leads to an increase in certain enzymes that break up fat in the blood stream. You don’t have to jog in place or do jumping jacks. Just stand. A very pleasant additional benefit is that standing up every 20 to 30 minutes also seems to prompt the body to burn calories, so you don’t gain as much weight from sitting at the office most of the day.

If you can stand up every 20 minutes — even if you do nothing else — you change how your body responds physiologically.

Risks of sitting at work
In recent years major international research has been undertaken providing compelling evidence that sitting for more than 4 hours each day can lead to:

  • Reduced calorie burning and lower metabolic rate.
  • Disrupted blood sugar levels.
  • The shutdown of enzymes responsible for burning harmful fat.
  • Seizing of leg muscles.

Higher levels of insulin and blood pressure.
Irrespective of your physical activity levels, the outcome of sitting can lead to increased risks of diabetes, obesity, heart disease, cancer, back ache, stiffness, pain, dementia, depression and muscle degeneration.

Benefits of Standing

By having a sit / stand desk users can easily correct posture alignment whilst promoting the following health and work benefits:

  • Revitalises your metabolism, burning between 50 - 60 extra calories per hour.
  • Elevates blood flow to the brain.
  • Optimises productivity.
  • Reduced risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer and other chronic illnesses.
  • Promotes a healthier spine and joints.
  • Prevention of muscle inactivity.
  • Aids in the relief of muscular pain.
  • Increases lifespan.

Our Solution
Progress desking offers the very best functionality for sit/stand workplaces. Packed with optional extras from electrical to desktop accessories, Progress combines the best of both health benefits and design aesthetics.

Key features:

  • Height adjustment from a 685mm - 1185mm.
  • Gas assisted or electric mechanisms available.
  • Single or double workstation options.

For more details on our Progress range from Elite click here.

Source: Elite Office Furniture Website

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5 Things you didn't know about Office Furniture Dealers

5 Things you didn't know about Office Furniture Dealers

Although speaking from experience of my own dealership but knowing many others in the 18 years I have been working in the Office Interiors Industry I thought I would share the following. Please note this is my personal view and experience and there are always exceptions.

  1. Contrary to popular belief we have a heart, a conscience and morals (not to be confused with other sales professionals).
  2. The majority of dealers have vast experience in the industry and can provide valuable (and mostly free) advice on property, workplace and current ways of thinking.
  3. As dealers are not aligned to just one manufacturing partner they can 99/100 offer a better overall deal (and service) than from going to a manufacturer directly as barely anyone in the global industry makes everything required to kit out a project.
  4. As most dealers run their own business they are accountable and always on hand for the all important day 2 service for any queries or top ups.
  5. If you treat us as part of your team as opposed to a seller of a commodity product driven by price alone your project will run more smoothly, have a better outcome for you and your staff and almost certainly cost less in the long run.
So the moral of the story is that if you would like to work with industry experts who have vast knowledge and expertise who will give you A1 service you know who to go to and as always we are always available to talk to you about ANY enquiry you have large or small.

 

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