How to Best Incorporate Cubicles and Workstations in Small Offices

Office design must be handled on a case-by-case basis. This is especially true when dealing with the limited space available in a small office. But with a little forethought and the proper furnishings, you’ll be able to maximize what’s available to you and make the smaller size of your office a non-issue.

Going for Style and Substance

Sure, it’s nice to have office furniture that’s appealing to the eye, but you’ll also want to take advantage of the benefits of greater functionality and shape. The use of desks with a lot of room beneath for storage is an excellent starting point. Also, it might be a good idea to use a pull-out keyboard platform, which will open up an area for other items that would otherwise be unavailable to you.

Take note of the specific shape of your office before choosing furnishings. A corner L-shaped desk or a U-shaped desk might be an excellent choice to use space more efficiently. Stand back and look at the room. Setting your desks up in a linear fashion might not be the best solution for you. Would a different setup be more suitable?

Alternatively, you have the option of using height-adjustable tables in your office. Not only do they provide a nice change of pace from sitting all day, but they can provide storage space and also might take up less room than a traditional desk does. As an added bonus, they have a sleek design and can make a room feel more open. Cubicle dividers are another consideration, as they offer privacy otherwise unavailable in a small office.

Other Ideas for Storage

When space is at a premium, you’ll need to find storage areas that go beyond what’s available beneath your desk. Workstation-adjacent filing cabinets and bookcases are excellent supplemental means of providing storage while keeping your items within easy reach.

Creating Space Through Proper Placement

Try not to block windows with your desk. Windows provide the illusion of space in a cramped office. You might also want to use attachable task lights on your desks rather than space-stealing freestanding lamps.

Additionally, don’t forget to take advantage of your walls. Dry erase boards take up minimal space while providing you with an excellent place to work on your daily business agenda.

If you’d like to learn more about how to best incorporate workstations and cubicles in small offices, please contact Office Furniture Direct at (503) 546-1546.

 

 

 

 

Creating an Ergonomic Workstation

In today’s increasingly technological society, we find ourselves spending more time in front of a computer screen. Office workers often spend eight or more hours a day at their workstations. All of this sitting in one place can take a toll on our bodies, especially our muscles, joints, and eyes.

It’s important that we consider ergonomics when selecting office equipment in order to maintain our health. Proper ergonomics involves making sure that each component of our workstation is well-positioned, used correctly, and built for our individual needs.

Beneficial Equipment and Positioning

First of all, make sure you’re seated in a relaxed position. It is critical that you use good posture as a complement to your ergonomic equipment and furniture. It is best to use a chair that swivels so you don’t find yourself having to contort your body into unnatural positions. Make sure that your feet are on the ground. Use a footrest if needed. A chairmat will allow you to move your chair more easily when needed.

When seated, you’ll want your upper legs to be horizontal and perpendicular to your computer screen. Your lower legs should be in a more or less straight-up-and-down position.

Keep your mouse, telephone, and other frequently used items at a comfortable distance from you. Be sure to move your mouse with your whole arm rather than relying on your hands. You’ll want to have a desk that has drawers at a natural height so you don’t have to bend or reach awkwardly to open and close them.

Choose a desk that allows you to position your monitor between 2 and 2.5 feet in front of you. Your monitor should not be at a distance where you have to strain or squint to read. Make sure your desk is a comfortable height for you, as well.

Your Body Works Hard for You. Give It a Break!

It’s very important to remember that your body requires diversity of positioning that goes beyond your lunch break. Take frequent smaller breaks to stretch your muscles and to look off into the distance. A height-adjustable table is a good option, too.

 

Additional Considerations

Place dry erase boards at an easily reached height. Make sure that the lighting at your workstation is adequate to avoid eyestrain. Power modules can help you avoid having to bend to access outlets.

If you’d like to learn more about ergonomics and what equipment can best help productivity and maintain good health, please contact Office Furniture Direct at (503) 546-1546.

Essential Cubicle Cleaning And Maintenance Hacks

No matter whether your cubicle is in a professional office or a customized workspace, having a dirty work area is detrimental to your mental and physical health. Many people are in the habit of cleaning their homes but habitually ignore their workstations. To help ensure this doesn’t happen to you, here are some essential cubicle cleaning and maintenance hacks.

Wipe Down, Clean Up

Cleaning the items you touch on a daily basis is a great way to stop germs in their tracks. Common culprits include your mouse, keyboard, headset, and telephone. Suitable materials for this task include a microfiber cloth or disinfecting wipe, with the latter being more advantageous for group settings where you’ll likely be dealing with other peoples’ germs.

In addition to sanitization, it is a good idea to clear your workspace of any significant clutter by the end of the day. This ensures your workstation looks clean and is free of any potential distractions at the start of the next day, which allows you to approach your shift with clarity and peace of mind.

Deep Disinfectant

So you’ve already cleaned your mouse, phone, headset, keyboard, and telephone, now what? Figure out which spaces in your cubicle see the most traffic and wipe them down with disinfectant wipes. Doing this once at the end of every week is enough to keep your workstation tidy and germ free.

Don’t Let Trash Accumulate

When it comes to trash, companies typically take one of two approaches. Some hire a cleaning crew, which means all you have to do is make sure they did a good job and alert the proper authorities if anything is off, However, if you do not have a cleaning crew then you need to make sure you are taking out the trash at least twice per week. The accumulation of garbage and food results in disgusting odors and attracts germs and various pests.

Organizational Suggestions

No matter how frequently you clean, it is essential to make sure you are not overlooking anything. So set up a comprehensive schedule and make sure you adhere to it. This could include things like cleaning photo frames and pen holders, reducing the number of pens and personal items at your desk, and regularly cleaning cables, cords, and power strips.

Ready to take your office organization to the next level? Contact Office Furniture Direct to set up a free space planning consultation.

If you are planning an office overhaul for your business, you will be making lots of decisions over the coming months. Everything from layout to finishes will be open to consideration. If the overhaul is a success, your new office space will look wonderful, and it will also help your employees feel their best when they’re at work and will boost productivity.

You’ll be introduced to a lot of new concepts during your office overhaul, and two of these are office space planning and office design. To understand the different stages of your potential project, it’s crucial to understand the difference between these two.

Office space planning
This is the first step in the process. When you’re planning your office space, you’re looking at elements like the number of existing windows, office configuration, breaks rooms, cubicles, and more. You should consider how many employees you house in how much space, and work from there to find the optimal layout for your office.

Some newer ideas in office planning are noise abatement techniques and options in types of workspaces. Office equipment stores can offer different products – foam ceiling panels, telephone hoods – to decrease noise pollution in your office. As with most things, some employees will thrive in an open floor plan while others would benefit working in a private cubicle. A mix of the two will help your employees be productive.

Office design
This phase relies more on a theme and occurs after you have planned your office space. This is when you decide on the overall look and feel of your new office. What kind of office equipment will you choose? What kind of finishes? How modern or traditional do you want your office to look?

The final choices should reflect your brand. What are you trying to convey to your customers? How about to your employees? Settle on what your brand represents to both parties and then play around with that concept in the physical space of your office. These decisions matter in the long run because they will pull the office together into a coherent space at the end of the project.

Be sensitive to the needs of your employees and your clients when designing and planning your new office space. The experts at Office Furniture Direct have many options for you to custom match your office space with your needs. Your business will thank you.

Important Factors To Consider When Outfitting Your Office With Cubicles 

Finding the perfect set of cubicles is essential for any business. After all, this is where your employees will be spending most of their time. To this extent, the right set of workstations will inspire contentment and productivity. However, choosing the right set can be a challenge.

Whether you’re outfitting a small space or an entire office building, here are some important factors to consider when purchasing cubicles for your office.

Keep Employee Needs In Mind

Cubicles that fail to meet your employees’ daily needs can actually be detrimental to your business. So before you decide on a particular style or brand, pay close attention to how your employees work. What are their tasks in the day and how do they go about accomplishing them? Does doing so require a certain level of privacy? Do they need any extra space? All of these are important questions that will have bearings on your final decision.

Budgetary Constraints

Odds are your budget is not infinite. However, that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to find stylish, reliable cubicles at a reasonable price. In fact, the odds are stacked in your favor, as most people tend to overestimate the cost of new cubicles.

Spatial Constraints

Maintaining a productive flow throughout the office is paramount to the success of your business. Cubicles that problematize or disrupt the flow should be discarded in lieu of something more adherent to your office’s spatial dimensions. So before you go out and buy the first thing that catches your eye, make sure to take room measurements. Doing so might inspire an entirely new approach or increase resolve as it pertains to your current trajectory. Either way, the productivity you inspire will reward you down the line.

Maintain That Office Aesthetic

While functionality is undoubtedly the most important thing to consider when selecting cubicles, it is good to keep your office’s aesthetic in mind. Maintaining a sense of unity will continually reinforce the core ethos of your business.

Ready to find the perfect cubicles? Contact Office Furniture Direct today. In business for over 15 years, they are one of Portland’s premier suppliers of new and pre-owned office furniture. Their comprehensive selection is sure to contain something that’s perfect for your project. Beyond that, they offer free space planning consultations where a staff member visits your home to assess the space and help you design a custom floor plan, as well as expedient installation by a licensed firm.

The benefits of private cubicle workstations

There’s a lot of hype about the open workspace design of many modern offices. An open workspace is one room with many workstations, the idea being that this type of workspace is more conducive to collaboration and leads to healthier employees. But is this patently true for all employees? Probably not. As with most things, some employees will thrive in an open floor plan office, while others would benefit from working in a private cubicle.

Here are a few reasons why you may want to consider including cubicles in your office floor plan:

Less distraction

For certain types of people and certain types of tasks, an open floor plan is not ideal. Depending on the nature of the work, an employee might not be able to give their full attention to the task at hand when there’s a lot of distraction. It’s not just audio distractions, comings and goings of co-workers can break concentration as well.

Work/life balance

In an open floor plan, everyone can see what everyone else is doing. Mostly this type of interaction promotes productivity and team-building, but it also puts pressure on your employees. Your employees may feel uncomfortable being the first one to leave at the end of the day or the last one in in the morning.

If a worker is stationed near a supervisor’s station, they might feel pressure to perform optimally at all times and can’t relax. These feelings can become overwhelming and affect your workers’ productivity levels.

Stress

The peer pressure of being constantly surrounded by fellow workers and the low-level noise and visual distractions can lead to stress build-up in your employees. The stress is subtle, but even low amounts of stress can lead to time management issues and even compromise your employees’ immune systems.

In the modern working world, open office plans are very popular, but an employer should think about their employees’ varied work styles. Much like in other areas of life, people’s preferences when it comes to working are very different – some prefer total silence whereas some like the hustle and bustle of an open office.

Be sensitive to the needs of all your employees. Consider a hybrid office design that includes open meeting areas as well as private cubicles. The experts at Office Furniture Direct have many options for you to custom match your office space with your workers’ needs. Your employees will thank you.

Workstation Layouts That Enhance Productivity

Ensuring optimal levels of productivity within a workspace is no easy task.  There are an incredible number of factors involved, some of which are beyond your control.  If an employee is having problems at home that occupy their thoughts, you can’t do much more than give them a personal day to try to rectify the situation.

However, there are plenty of areas where you can take steps to improve productivity on a daily basis, starting with the office environment you create.  The right workstation layout can have a major impact on productivity, and there are several ways you can plan for a layout conducive to enhancing efficiency and performance.

Adequate Work Space
Understanding what your employees do and how they utilize work space is essential to creating proper workstation layout, whether you’re measuring the square footage needed for each cubicle or desk area or you’re considering the optimal size of desk you’ll need and how equipment should be arranged.  The work area and furniture assigned to each employee should be adequate to accommodate the work they must do.

Organizational Tools
Clutter can be a productivity killer, so you want to make sure each workstation is outfitted with the organizational tools needed to ensure organization and efficiency.  This could include furniture like shelving and filing cabinets, or desktop and drawer organizers that coral cables, contain pens and pencils, and house loose papers until they can be addressed or filed away.

Ergonomic Solutions
Productivity can be hampered by discomfort, which is why ergonomic solutions have become an essential part of the office layout.  Ergonomic keyboards can help to eliminate repetitive motion injuries, for example, while ergonomic chairs and adjustable desks can reduce instances of back and neck pain, which are among the most common complaints from desk jockeys.  With the right ergonomic office solutions, you’ll create a work environment conducive to greater comfort and productivity.

Ample Lighting
Technically, this has little to do with the actual layout of the workspace, unless it centers on desktop task lighting, but having abundant natural lighting is one of the most important factors when it comes to increasing productivity, so it bears mentioning.  Our circadian rhythms are based on cycles of light and darkness, so when we find ourselves in a poorly lit environment, it’s only natural that we start to feel sleepy.

However you arrange your workstations and work surfaces, you need to find ways to imbue your space with natural light, as well as artificial lighting that mimics the sun.  When paired with suitable workstation layouts, this element could significantly boost productivity.

How to Choose the Right Cubicles for Your Workspace

The layout in your office may seem like a passing concern. As long as you can fit the number of workstations needed to accommodate headcount, does it really matter which cubicles you use or how you arrange them?

As a matter of fact, the layout of your workspace can impact performance, productivity, and employee morale, so choosing a suitable layout and using the right elements is hugely important if you want your operation to be efficient and profitable, and you hope to retain talent. How do you go about choosing the right cubicles for your office space? Here are a few things to consider.

Take Measurements
From a purely practical perspective, you shouldn’t purchase cubicles until you’re sure they’ll actually fit in available space. You need to measure the square footage in your office to ensure that the number and size of cubicles you have in mind will actually fit. If not, you might need to select a different product or consider expanding your workspace to fit more cubicles and employees.

Don’t forget to measure furniture, as well. Whether you have existing furniture or you’re planning to purchase desks and other needed furnishings to fill your office, it’s important to make sure the design elements in your office all work together before you buy.

Consider Usage
What is it your employees do? Their tasks could determine the size and shape of cubicles you choose. Does the average employee need multiple monitors, myriad equipment and devices, and plenty of storage space, including filing cabinets, drawers, and shelves? Or do employees use simple enough setups that two people could reasonably share a single cubicle space with a desk on either side?

Consider Corporate Culture
Your corporate culture and the way you envision employees interacting with each other and the space could have a major impact on the cubicle design you choose. For example, do employees frequently collaborate as teams or do they mostly work solo?

Is your company’s work philosophy more traditional or creative in nature? In other words, do you encourage employee interaction or do you expect them to hunker down and get work done in silence?

You also need to consider how you want light and sound to flow through your space. Should cubicles provide seclusion so workers can focus on their tasks, or do you want an open environment that facilitates conversation and creative thinking?

When you take the time to consider your space and furnishings, how the space will be used, and the behavior you expect from employees, you’ll have a much easier time choosing suitable cubicles for your workspace.

Design & Layout

When you are looking to reconfigure your office’s layout and overall design, things can become overwhelming rather quickly. With so many design options and layouts to choose from, it can be hard to narrow things down and to choose the best options for your specific workspace. While all workspaces are different and all require different design elements to thrive, here are a few tips to consider when reconfiguring your office’s design and layout:

Utilize Natural Light

Natural light is much better for the human eye than fluorescent light. The latter can cause headaches and eye strains. Additionally, natural light helps to control your melatonin levels. This affects how focused and alert one feels. The more your employees are exposed to natural light, the more alert they will feel; this, in turn, will boost productivity.

Be Spacious

Be conscious about how you use the space in your office. Employees should be able to move about freely and furniture should be situated in a way where, if an emergency arises, people can exit the office in a safe and quick manner.

Prioritize Storage

For many, storage is often the last thing that is considered when they are redesigning an office. However, storage should be prioritized. By ensuring your office has ample storage, clutter will be reduced. This will allow employees to work in a more efficient manner.

Don’t Skimp

While it can be tempting to purchase furniture based on cost, make sure that the furniture you purchase for your office is of good quality. With cheap furniture, you get what you pay for. Not only will this make your office look subpar, but poor-quality furniture can affect the health of your employees negatively. Ergonomic office chairs, for example, have been proven to increase productivity and reduce the number of sick days that employees take. Additionally, higher-quality furniture lasts longer than poorly made furniture; this will save you money in the long run.

Use Your Lobby

Your lobby is the first thing customers and clients see when they step into your office. It is important that your lobby reflects your business and what your business offers. It should have comfortable seating and should be an extension of your business.

Reconfiguring your office does not have to be an overwhelming experience. By using these tips when designing your new office, you will be able to create a space that reflects the values of your business and that stimulates pride in the people that work there.

Contact the Experts at OFD today or Schedule an Appointment for a Free Consultation.

Professional Design

As our culture shifts from work, work, work to promoting a more balanced work life, one of the more notorious changes within offices has been the overall design of the office itself. More and more companies are realizing the importance of creating a space that employees want to work in versus a space that employees have to work in.

An office that is designed with intent is an office that employees can take pride in; this, in turn, can boost productivity as well as overall office morale. The key to a creating a well-designed office is to hire a professional. Here are a few benefits of hiring a professional to design your office space:

Save Time and Money

Many business owners may think that hiring an interior design professional will cost them more money than it would cost to simply re-design their office themselves. However, a professional is able to make strategic choices, does not need to adapt to a design learning curve, and will not have to experiment with different styles (which costs money in the long run). Further, you are able to save time. You can focus on business while a professional interior designer focuses on the aesthetics of your office.

High-Quality Materials

A professional designer knows what materials are best and has connections in place to ensure that the items you are receiving are high-quality and long-lasting. This helps avoid the usage of cheap materials that wear down quickly over time.

A Vision

Setting out to re-design an office on your own can become overwhelming. It can be hard to see the bigger picture. A design professional will present you with a mock-up of what you can expect the final product to be. This allows you to add your opinions in so he or she can tweak the plan to fit your wants and needs.

Maximizing Space

Design professionals know how to use the space available to them in a precise way. He or she will ensure that your space is designed in a way that encourages productivity and does not hinder people from getting their jobs done or from moving about the office without obstructions.

Hiring a design professional to design your office is a wise choice. A well-designed office is a fantastic way to ensure that employee productivity is boosted, stress is reduced, and that you are able to keep up with the changes in how people work in this day and age.

Contact the Experts at OFD today or Schedule an Appointment for a Free Consultation.

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