Improve your office environment: 12 top tips

It’s easy to become absorbed in our work without much thought to the environment around us. But it is our very surroundings that can sometimes be detrimental to our office productivity and wellbeing.

But that doesn’t have to be the case. If you work in a corporate office, there are many changes you can make to cultivate a fruitful and friendly work environment:

1. Hang some artwork: keep it simple with some branded materials, or get a bit zany with some motivational posters or your favourite Picasso print!

2. Brighten up the place with some flowers and other plant life (just don’t forget to water them!)

3. Lighten up the place with extra lamps or light boxes. Choose daylight bulbs or specialist light therapy boxes for bright, near-natural light that’s easy on the eyes.

4. Clear your desk and your mind by decluttering and ditching printed paperwork. Recycle anything you already have in soft copy. Make this a daily habit to keep you distraction-free while you work.

5. Employ subtle scents to improve your mood. If candles or incense will cause conflict in the office, use essential oils to keep you calm and productive throughout the day.

6. Purge the office cupboards and filing cabinets: if you discover anything you don’t need, get rid. If there are items you only require once a year or less, archive them.

7. Improve air quality with air filters, open windows and indoor plants.

8. Sort out those messy cables.

9. Get ergonomic: prevent RSI and joint pain by purchasing wrist and foot rests, laptop stands, ergonomic keyboards and anything else that keeps you comfortable at your desk.

10. Update your furniture for your comfort and safety. Your old desks and chairs can be environmentally recycled.

11. Eliminate your junk drawer: you know the one. That place you put all the stuff you think you need, but in reality never use. Clear your junk drawer and don’t let anything back in that you don’t use regularly.

12. Help keep office illness to a minimum by dusting your desktop and IT peripheries regularly. If possible, do this last thing on a Friday, unless you want the whole office sneezing!


Moving office or simply in need of a declutter? Pickfords Business Solutions offers a wide range of services for modern organisations, including porterage and churn, IT relocation, furniture recycling and storage. Call us on 0845 130 6559, email solutions@pickfords.com or enquire online for more information.

How to manage an office downsize

Modern office reception area

With the growth of home-working, hot-desking and virtual offices, more and more companies are choosing to consolidate their office space, both as a cost-saving exercise and as part of a shift in corporate culture as technology increasingly allows employees to carry out their work using remote digital environments, without the need to be physically present at their office.

Downsizing can improve a company’s efficiency and, ultimately, its bottom line, but will inevitably present its own set of challenges.

Keep your employees informed
If your company persues an office downsize, it’s important that the situation is managed carefully. Even if the physical downsize isn’t the result of economic challenges, staff may feel nervous, leading to rumours and assumptions that moving to a smaller office means the company is in trouble and therefore their jobs may be in jeopardy. Such anxiety can lead to increased stress levels and reduced productivity, and even potentially employees looking for jobs elsewhere.

In this situation, communication is key. Don’t keep your employees in the dark; create a communication plan, detailing your key messages and the positive reasons behind the change.  Explain to your staff as early as possible why the downsize is happening, focusing on the positives that affect them, such as increased flexibility, efficiency and remote working. Encourage opportunities for two way discussion so they feel their questions are being heard.

Whether your downsize involves consolidating your existing office space or moving into a new building, consider how this will affect your employees and give them plenty of notice, particularly if a new building means additional commuting time for some.

Make the most of your new space
When preparing for an office downsize, it’s important to carry out a detailed space plan to help you save money in unnecessary rental of redundant office space while identifying any under-utilised areas and maximising the space you intend to use.

Pickfords Business Solutions offers a detailed space planning and interior design service to help you best utilise your office space for the needs of your business.

Carefully plan your IT
Getting your new infrastructure right is vital to ensure minimal disruption to business operations during an office downsize, particularly if upgrading or installing a new virtual office environment.

To help you manage a potentially complex IT relocation, Pickfords Business Solutions works with your IT supplier or internal department to ensure a seamless infrastructure move, including disconnection and reconnection services, server and data relocation, network patching and auditing services, portable appliance testing and cable management.

Consider storage as an option
While planning an office downsize, you may find it necessary to store certain furniture, equipment or filing, either as a temporary solution between office moves or a longer-term option to save on the costs of property rental.

Pickfords Business Solutions has a national network of storage centres for any length or size of business storage.

Meet your CSR objectives
Consolidating your office space normally results in an excess of furniture and IT equipment. Use this opportunity to meet your CSR targets by opting for environmental disposal of your unwanted goods, which can help raise thousands of pounds for local charities and causes while proving a cost effective alternative to landfill.

Pickfords’ recycling and reuse service raises £15,500 for the British Heart Foundation

BHF_Retail - Thank You Posters_A4 (2014) Pickfords 2Pickfords Business Solutions and its clients have together raised £15,500 for the British Heart Foundation (BHF) by donating used office furniture.

Pickfords offers corporate clients a recycling and reuse service to dispose of their old desks, cabinets, chairs and other furniture when they refurbish or move office. Pickfords has worked closely with BHF since 2013 to donate much of this furniture to its retail division, to be re-sold in its high-street shops to raise vital funds for life saving CPR equipment and training.

Since working with BHF, Pickfords Business Solutions has undertaken major projects with a number of clients, including Schneider and A4e, providing a furniture recycling service from which the majority of furniture was donated to BHF.

Katie Murphy, Pickfords’ Head of Environmental Reuse said:

“I feel truly privileged to assist the British Heart Foundation and proud of the fantastic relationship we have. Thank you to all our clients who kindly donated their furniture for this worthy cause.”

Mike Taylor, BHF’s Retail Director, said,

“On behalf of the British Heart Foundation I would like to thank you most sincerely for your support of our fast and free collection service over the past year.

This is the second year that the British Heart Foundation has worked with Pickfords and we are delighted that so far £15,500 has been raised through client removals.

Please pass on our most heartfelt thanks to everyone at Pickfords.”

Planning an office makeover?

modern office interior

We often invest a lot of time (and large amounts of money!) decorating and redecorating our home, to get it looking and functioning just right. It is much less common, however, to put the same level of thought into our workspace. Considering that many of us spend upwards of 40 hours a week in the office, it is worth investing time to create a nice, relaxing and motivating space in which to work.

When you’re at the height of productivity and the work is flowing, it can be easy to keep your head down and forget everything else around you. However, on those days where things aren’t going quite so smoothly, your happiness, motivation and productivity could all be negatively affected by the unkempt office environment around you.

Perhaps your office just seems a bit run down, suffering under everyday wear and tear: worn out carpet, peeling wallpaper, dents in the walls. All of this can make your office feel dated and in need of a serious makeover. It could be that the company has undergone some hard times and needs to downsize to a smaller premises, or maybe the opposite is true and you are relocating to a bigger building. Whatever the reason, you will want to make sure that your office makeover goes as smoothly as possible.

The amount of preparation and assistance you will need when redecorating your office will depend on the size of your office and extent of the makeover. Whatever you need, Pickfords offers a range of business services to help you through your transition.

Whether you need help with reorganising your workplace, packing and moving your equipment, storage or recycling services for your excess furniture, or assistance with employee relocation, Pickfords can help. Visit our website to find out more.

RSPCA animals kept warm by Pickfords’ recyling and reuse service

Pickfords Business Solutions’ launched an environmental service at the end of 2010 to provide recycling and reuse services to help companies across the UK dispose of unwanted assets.  The service aims to help companies meet their environmental targets when faced with the disposal of redundant furniture and IT equipment and provides a cost effective alternative to landfill.

The service includes asset tagging, collection and delivery to a Pickfords storage facility.   Items that can be reused are placed locally with not- for-profit organisations, community groups or furniture resellers.  Other items are stripped of their components and metal, wood and plastic and recycled.  The entire process is tracked and certification provided so clients can demonstrate their environmental credentials.

Nicki Brotherston,  Head of Environmental Reuse said,  “one of the great things about being in the recycling and waste management business is being able to identify useful items and then send them to deserving causes.   The RSPCA is a key member of our Partner Network and we will continue to work closely with them.”

If you are a charity that could benefit from office furniture or other office assets,  don’t hesitate to call Pickfords Business Solutions on 0121 326 1785