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October 6, 2020

End of the office? How COVID-19 could reinvent the workplace

In April 2020, the Office for National Statistics reported that almost half the UK population (46.6 percent) had been working from home and 86 percent of them did so as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Does that mean the end of the office, as we know it?  Changing patterns

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£250m framework to boost MMC in the public sector

Offsite manufacturers looking to boost the profile of MMC in the public sector are wanted for a new four-year framework to supply schools, hospitals and community buildings. The Modular Buildings (MB2) framework from LHC is for the design, supply, installation and hire of permanent, temporary, and refurbished modular buildings for

Read More »

Work gets underway on UK’s first ever robot-built house

A Yorkshire company is laying the foundations to revolutionise the housebuilding industry – by creating the UK’s first home built by a robot Pocklington-based Construction Automation started work on the three-bedroom house in Everingham this week, a modern property being built from traditional bricks and mortar. But there is nothing

Read More »

PORR consortium wins HS2 modular track contract

HS2 awards contract for modular slab track system for Phase One and 2a New factory in Somerset, set to create up to 500 jobs HS2 today awarded a major contract to design and manufacture the modular track system for the UK’s new high speed railway, to a partnership which includes

Read More »
Business Park Plans Submitted

Business Park Plans Submitted

Plans for a major business park which would create a total of 1,300 jobs in Leicestershire have been submitted by Jersey-based Gulf Ventures 2 Ltd. The application is earmarked for land north of Neovia Logistics, Desford Lane, Desford. If backed by Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council 909,647 sq ft of

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Council to Use Fingerprint Drug Test for Public Sector

Council to Use Fingerprint Drug Test for Public Sector

Huntingdonshire District Council is the first UK council to use an innovative fingerprint-based drug test to support its frontline services. Since July, the council has been using the Intelligent Fingerprinting Drug Screening System as part of its recruitment process. Thanks to the fingerprint system’s ease-of-use and ability to deliver test results in ten

Read More »

Reasons to use Corner Guards in Interior and Exterior Design

In the modern-day, interior designers and architects are using metal for safety and decorations. They use the finishing for protecting the walls from cracks and chipping. Modern homes are utilizing the metal corner guards in kitchens, bedrooms, and living rooms. The simple option to décor is durable and robust for

Read More »

The Importance of Package Integrity in the Manufacturing Industry

In recent times, manufacturing industries are embracing non-destructive non-package testing. A defective package makes the product loos sterility. Contamination of manufactured due to leakage can be catastrophic in pharmaceutical products. The physical method of testing packages is reliable and verifiable, unlike biological tests. With package leak detectors like FlexPax, businesses

Read More »

Corners not to cut when physically expanding your business

Even the fact that you are able to consider a physical expansion of your business is exciting. Of course, the reality is that it can be a costly affair, and many people will seek ways to reduce the financial outgoings. While doing that, it is essential to ensure that not

Read More »

Latest Issue

BDC 319 : Aug 2024

October 6, 2020

End of the office? How COVID-19 could reinvent the workplace

In April 2020, the Office for National Statistics reported that almost half the UK population (46.6 percent) had been working from home and 86 percent of them did so as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Does that mean the end of the office, as we know it?  Changing patterns of work Now, as workplaces gradually reopen in the ‘new normal’, employees are returning to discover a ‘reimagined workplace’ that’s very different from the one they left behind. Pre-Covid the office was open plan with shared spaces and facilities for face-to-face meetings. And, working from home was an option. Instead, employees find themselves in a hybrid workplace where more than half of employees may be working remotely. In fact, a Gartner survey indicated that remote working may become a permanent feature for many employees.  The survey indicated that 74 percent of respondents intended to move at least 5 percent of their on-site workforce to permanently remote positions post-COVID 19 and nearly 25 percent said they will move at least 20 percent of employees.  Focus on safety That’s a major shift in the way people work and the workplace is being reinvented to reflect that. As well as catering for a fluctuating workforce, the changes are providing an opportunity to create a smarter workplace that could improve productivity and efficiency.  The challenge for the industry is how to reopen the workplace as a safe, secure environment for those employees that want to return — and many do. Gensler Research, for example, found that only 12 percent of US workers want to work from home full time. Most want to return to the workplace, but with critical changes.  The survey found that employees still value personal interaction over virtual collaboration and ‘people-focused’ reasons were top of the list for their preference to return. What employees miss most about the office are the people, according to 74 percent of respondents.  Employees looking for reassurance However, research also indicates a continuing lack of confidence among employees — they want concrete evidence that employers are taking actions to protect them.  A survey by Traction Guest in June 2020 found that 84 percent of employees are concerned about going to their workplace for the remainder of 2020 and 85 percent stated that health and safety in the workplace is now a greater consideration than before the pandemic.  Short-term social distancing     measures are enabling a limited return, but to encourage more employees back, employers and industry professionals have to go further. That means reinventing the workplace by adapting existing buildings to recreate a safe environment for the critical social and human aspects of work that were absent during lockdown. Technology is playing a critical role and creating an integrated digital network will be critical to provide services that keep employees and visitors safe. Coronavirus cleaning specialists at Metro Cleaning explain, “Deep cleaning should be carried out daily, or as often as possible. If COVID-19 has been confirmed in your office, the amount of virus living on surfaces will reduce significantly after 72 hours, so if possible, wait until this time has passed before cleaning. Then, make sure to wear disposable or washing-up gloves and aprons when cleaning – this is the minimum personal protective equipment (PPE) necessary according to the current PHE guidance.”  Protecting the employee journey The ‘employee journey’ in a multi-floor building provides a useful framework for identifying where technology can help. On a typical day, an employee leaves home, taking public transport or driving to the company car park and accesses the building with a temperature check at reception.  After taking the lift to the office, the employee might go upstairs to a conference room then return to the office or go to a cafeteria. Later, there might be an informal meeting in a huddle room or visits to other departments before exiting the building at the end of the day.  That type of journey takes in many critical contact points where touchless technology, surveillance and digital wayfinding systems can play a key role in reducing risk and creating a safe working environment.  Of course, though touchless technology will play an important role in the future, this doesn’t take away the fact that offices and employers need to be vigilant with cleanliness and hygiene. Metro Cleaning reports  Keeping employees informed Up-to-date information is essential during periods of uncertainty and digital signage is proving to be a valuable channel of communication. Video walls and other forms of digital display provide a flexible, dynamic channel for company notifications, status updates, location information and alerts of changes in procedures or urgent safety instructions.  Higher levels of automation Automation is an important element of the reinvented workplace, helping to eliminate unnecessary contact and ensure critical tasks, such as hygiene or environmental checks, are completed automatically in line with pre-set procedures.  Integrating automation with touchless technologies helps to minimize the risk of transferring the virus through contact with any of the frequently used surfaces in a building. Critical, heavily used surfaces might include door handles, access keypads, elevator buttons, display controls and reception logins.   Actions associated with those surfaces can be automated, using technologies such as RFID to create a touchless process. And, smartphone apps can also be used to automate many of the processes, particularly those tasks where employees must validate their identity to gain access at reception or secure areas, for example.   An integrated approach  All of these services can be integrated with track and trace and building management systems to bring HVAC, lighting and other environmental services into a single solution, rather than a collection of ad-hoc installations.  Surveillance systems will also be important to monitor spaces where social distancing could be difficult to maintain. By using information from monitoring systems, facilities management teams can redirect people via digital wayfinding systems to reduce the risk of overcrowding.  Delivering a solution like this will require a multidisciplinary approach involving an ecosystem of dedicated partners, including architects, facility planners and managers, interior designers, furniture manufacturers, contractors,

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£250m framework to boost MMC in the public sector

Offsite manufacturers looking to boost the profile of MMC in the public sector are wanted for a new four-year framework to supply schools, hospitals and community buildings. The Modular Buildings (MB2) framework from LHC is for the design, supply, installation and hire of permanent, temporary, and refurbished modular buildings for the public sector. It primarily covers education, healthcare, emergency services, offices and community related amenities such as sport facilities and theatres, but it can also be used for residential projects that are part of a mixed-use development or for student accommodation. Suppliers that want to be part of the framework need to offer a full turnkey solution, providing all services required to deliver a full project from design through to handover. Mij Rahman, director of procurement at LHC, said: “We’ve seen the public sector’s appetite for offsite construction increase over recent years, with contracting authorities procuring £100million of work through our previous MB1 framework. “This framework needs enthusiastic, innovative suppliers that want to work with us and continue to raise standards within the MMC market and can also provide local authorities with high quality services that deliver long term value.” The framework is split into four workstreams with eight lots that bidders can apply for. For more information on how to apply for the MB2 framework, contact your regional hub: www.lhc.gov.uk/contact-us/  Lot 1: Workstream 1a – permanent modular buildings (up to £750,000) Lot 2: Workstream 1b – permanent modular buildings (£500,000-£3 million) Lot 3: Workstream 1c – permanent modular buildings (over £3 million) Lot 4: Workstream 2a – permanent healthcare buildings (up to £3 million) Lot 5: Workstream 2b – permanent healthcare buildings (over £3 million) Lot 6: Workstream 3 – hire of temporary buildings Lot 7: Workstream 4 – refurbished buildings

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Work gets underway on UK’s first ever robot-built house

A Yorkshire company is laying the foundations to revolutionise the housebuilding industry – by creating the UK’s first home built by a robot Pocklington-based Construction Automation started work on the three-bedroom house in Everingham this week, a modern property being built from traditional bricks and mortar. But there is nothing traditional about the way the walls are being constructed. Instead of bricklayers and labourers, the house is being built by Construction Automation’s Automatic Brick Laying Robot (ABLR) – an innovative piece of technology that has been four years in development. In a world first, the robot will lay all the bricks, blocks, and mortar. It is also the first machine of its type ever created that can build around corners – meaning it can construct an entire house without stopping. Construction Automation was formed in May 2016 by entrepreneurs David Longbottom and Stuart Parkes. David said: “The house will contain around 10,000 bricks and will take the ABLR about two weeks to build. “It is the first house in the UK to be built by a robot, and possibly the first in the world. “The ABLR comprises of the robot and a sophisticated software control system that reads digitised versions of architect’s plans. “This instructs the robot exactly where to lay the blocks, bricks and mortar. “It is controlled from a tablet and all the data about a specific build can be accessed remotely, making it very easy to assess progress on site at any time.” Building in this way requires just two people to work on each house – a labourer to load bricks and mortar into the robot and a skilled person to install tie bars, damp courses, and lintels, and to do the pointing. The control system sends out alerts when these important jobs need doing, and then takes a photograph of the completed task to form a complete digital record of the key quality criteria. Stuart said the advantages of the ABLR include increased productivity, better quality houses, and improved health and safety on site. He said: “Although bricks are meant to be a standard size there is quite a lot of variation in them. “So, we use sensors to measure each individual brick and then to line it up, so it is precisely central on the wall. The sensors also align the edge of each brick to produce a perfect finish. “That way, the ABLR builds quickly and to a consistently high standard.” He added that as it sits on a nine-metre high vertical lift frame, it removes the need for scaffolding and for people to work at height. “The robot is mounted on a track that is placed around the footprint of the house,” he said. “With the in-built vertical lift, the machine can build easily to the height of a standard two-storey house, so it is much safer than building in the traditional way.” Construction Automation has already secured patent in the USA on the technology, and a European and UK patent is expected to follow shortly. David added that once the ABLR had completed this house and a number of other test properties, the company will be ready to go into full production. “Our goal is to automate housebuilding as far as we can,” he said. “By doing this, we can increase productivity for the industry, improve health and safety, and guarantee quality.”

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PORR consortium wins HS2 modular track contract

HS2 awards contract for modular slab track system for Phase One and 2a New factory in Somerset, set to create up to 500 jobs HS2 today awarded a major contract to design and manufacture the modular track system for the UK’s new high speed railway, to a partnership which includes PORR UK Ltd and Aggregate Industries UK. The deal will see the slab track segments manufactured at a new factory near Shepton Mallet in Somerset helping to create up to 500 jobs over the life of the contract. The deal – worth £260m – will see the PORR consortium manufacture all of the track (excluding tunnels and some specialist structures) between London and Crewe, where HS2 joins the existing west coast mainline. Using a modular construction system known as Slab Track Austria, the concrete slab track will be manufactured offsite at a new purpose-built factory in Somerset before being transported to site. Once installed, the rails are then fitted onto the slab track. This type of system – which is used on several high speed railways across the world – will reduce maintenance costs and improve performance in comparison to traditional ballasted track. HS2 Ltd’s Procurement and Commercial Director, David Poole said: “HS2 is designed to provide reliable high frequency, high capacity rail services for millions of people across the UK. Slab track will provide long-term value for money with lower maintenance costs and greater reliability and that’s why I’m pleased that today we are awarding that contract to the PORR consortium. “This award – and the announcement of the new factory at Somerset – is another example of how HS2 is already supporting companies across the UK, creating jobs and helping the economy recover from the coronavirus pandemic.” PORR is one of Austria’s leading engineering companies and one of the first companies in the world to develop a slab track system. PORR’s slab track system has been used to lay more than 780 kilometres of track worldwide – with its first stretch operating almost maintenance free since being laid in Langenlebern, Austria, in 1989. Aggregate Industries UK is one of Britain’s leading providers of construction materials, employing more than 3,700 people at 300 sites across the UK. The new factory is planned to be built at an existing Aggregate Industries site in Somerset. Simon Jukes, Managing Director of PORR UK Ltd said: “The PORR Consortium is delighted to have the opportunity to contribute to this major contract and will bring a wealth of technical expertise and experience in high speed rail and slab track to the HS2 project. We are looking forward to working collaboratively with the HS2 team to deliver a world class sustainable rail infrastructure for the United Kingdom.” A separate Track Systems contractor – due to be appointed in 2022 – will have overall responsibility for managing and coordinating the design and installation of the complex rail systems in each section of the route. This includes the installation of the slab track manufactured by the PORR consortium and the interface with signalling and overhead power supply. Separate specialist contractors will also deliver the rails, switches and crossings, high voltage power supply, communications and mechanical and electrical systems.

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Business Park Plans Submitted

Business Park Plans Submitted

Plans for a major business park which would create a total of 1,300 jobs in Leicestershire have been submitted by Jersey-based Gulf Ventures 2 Ltd. The application is earmarked for land north of Neovia Logistics, Desford Lane, Desford. If backed by Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council 909,647 sq ft of industrial and office space and 75,024 sq ft of storage space across four buildings would be created. More than 900 car parking spaces would also be created if the go-ahead is given. A document submitted to the council on behalf of the applicant said: “The design has been considered to offer the maximum commercial benefit to the borough whilst sensitive to the environmental issues and adjacent settlements of Desford & Peckleton Village. “Consulations and responses have been carefully considered and where it is within the remit of Griffen, appropriate measures have been taken to mitigate the development impacts. “The site location has some exceptional metrics to attract high quality occupiers and employment which is Griffen’s strategy of making such a large capital investment in this location. “The masterplan has been developed to offer the very best in class for contemporary logistic workspace whilst making a significant contribution to the local communities by the creation of a major biodiverse habitat which will be freely accessible to the local communities. “The principal development site will be a fully secure, highly managed development cluster operating 24 hrs/seven days per week and this will continue in use with regular community engagement and controls with each occupier. “There is an aspiration to utilise local skills in both construction and future operation wherever possible. This is now a fully accepted commitment in major large developments. The development will achieve the highest standards of sustainability and energy efficiency for speculative logistics developments. “The design solution will make a positive contribution to the Borough with contemporary perceptions of use and activity. High quality materials and detailing will contribute to this perception of a development set in high quality landscaping.” Griffen UK Ltd acquired the site the from Neovia Logistics Services (UK) Ltd in May 2020.

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Council to Use Fingerprint Drug Test for Public Sector

Council to Use Fingerprint Drug Test for Public Sector

Huntingdonshire District Council is the first UK council to use an innovative fingerprint-based drug test to support its frontline services. Since July, the council has been using the Intelligent Fingerprinting Drug Screening System as part of its recruitment process. Thanks to the fingerprint system’s ease-of-use and ability to deliver test results in ten minutes, council managers are now able to carry out their own drug screening tests before candidates are offered permanent or temporary positions, instead of relying on an external agency to do this. The council is using the system to help ensure that all its front-line safety-critical service staff, including refuse collection drivers of 26 tonne lorries, ground teams, and street maintenance staff working in busy traffic, are all working safely – and protecting themselves, their colleagues and the public. Huntingdonshire District Council (HDC) has used drug testing to support its drug and alcohol policy for some time, but has now replaced the previous urine-based testing service provided by an external agency with the Intelligent Fingerprinting portable testing system that is managed in-house. Although the council has been using the fingerprint test for only a few weeks, it has already been very positively received by both candidates and testers thanks to its hygienic, non-invasive approach – which enables social distancing when testing – as well as its ability to provide on-site test results in around ten minutes. “We are using the Intelligent Fingerprinting system to test all new permanent employees or agency staff for frontline services. These employees work in safety-critical roles, often work around machinery, and in a constantly changing environment so it is critical that they are alert and fit for duty. The fingerprint drug screening system is fantastic as it’s saving the council a huge amount of time and cost as we’re now able to conduct the tests in-house rather than using an external provider. Having the system available for use whenever it’s needed also gives us the flexibility to carry out tests at other times too, such as ‘for cause’ testing if we have reason to suspect drug use by an existing employee,” said Andrew Rogan, Operations Manager, HDC. “We are finding the fingerprint system is giving us much greater control over our drug testing, and its efficiency is helping us to unlock immediate savings for the council,” added Andrew Rogan. “Thanks to the Intelligent Fingerprinting approach we have been able to implement remote training for our managers so they can carry out the testing themselves, and we’re confident in the results as the test is virtually impossible to tamper with.” Dr Paul Yates of Intelligent Fingerprinting also commented: “It’s good to hear that our fingerprint drug test is already saving Huntingdonshire District Council time and money while delivering a superior on-site service for their drug testing needs. Immediate efficiency savings include being able to carry out testing quickly and easily in the office and no longer needing to cordon off bathrooms to dedicate their use to urine testing. The council has also taken advantage of Intelligent Fingerprinting’s one stop service for both drug and alcohol tests so we’re providing the council with alcohol breathalysers too.”

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Reasons to use Corner Guards in Interior and Exterior Design

In the modern-day, interior designers and architects are using metal for safety and decorations. They use the finishing for protecting the walls from cracks and chipping. Modern homes are utilizing the metal corner guards in kitchens, bedrooms, and living rooms. The simple option to décor is durable and robust for all kinds of building designs. There are numerous reason to install corner guards in-home or workplaces; Acts as reinforcement to the wall corners The corners at the wall are the first places prone to damage in a new home. It is vital to reinforce the parts to minimize the risk of damage. Guards will offer protection against dents, scratches, and cracks. Places with massive traffic of users and lots of movement to assets need this kind of property proofing. The corner guards make the wall corners resistant to the constant collision with movable items. Offer Protection to walls in Industrial Places Companies that engage in industrial work are in the constant movement of raw materials and machines. The walls are prone to damage when the heavy items hit against the walls. Corners guards protect the most vulnerable part of the wall. Industrial buildings are investing in the metal corner guards that offer strong protection to the building. It is an excellent investment to increase the value of a property and avoid frequent repair costs. Prevents Injuries to Occupants Corner guards offer protection to the wall from distractive children. On the other hand, the guards will protect the child from injury upon falling. Rubber corner guards are the ideal in proofing the house. It is a preventive measure if you have kids and pets at home. They are also suitable for places with high human traffic as people get in contact with the wall edges. Protects the Wallpaper from peeling Over time, wallpapers start peeling from the wall corners. Corner guards protect the corners at the wall from wear and tear that leads to the wallpaper peeling. It keeps the interior design last longer, thus reducing the cost of maintaining the wallpaper. Prevent staining Many people tend to touch the wall corners. The practice stains the wall and it is tasking to clean dirt off the paint. Corner guards are easy to clean and it is why restaurants use them in their interior design. Kitchens are ideal places for metal and wooden corner guards that are easy to clean and maintain. Are Decorative The wooden corner guards can have a beautiful texture to it. On the other hand, metallic ones offer a nice shiny finish to the wall. Using corner guards in home interior design gives a unique touch to the outlook in the room. Homeowners have the option of painting the corner guards to blend them with the interior décor and furniture. A Variety of Materials to choose from Every home and business environment can find the right fit for the corner guard to use. The component in interior design comes in a different type of material according to the need. They come in varying gauge and size. The most common materials in the industry are metal, rubber, synthetic, vinyl, and wood. Saves money Unprotected walls are prone to damage at home or the workplace. Corner guards aids in protecting the interior from the environment’s daily demands and activities. It costs less to install the guards than a complete renovation to the damaged space. Most Spaces need protection A lot of spaces in residential and commercial buildings are exposed to constant impact and force. Without protection, the impact will cause damage to the property. Places such as offices, restaurants, schools, and hospitals make use of equipment that causes an impact on the walls. Corner guards are a necessity in the interior design of such high traffic places. Conclusion Apart from safeguarding the life of your property and loved ones, corner guards will save you money in the long run.

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The Importance of Package Integrity in the Manufacturing Industry

In recent times, manufacturing industries are embracing non-destructive non-package testing. A defective package makes the product loos sterility. Contamination of manufactured due to leakage can be catastrophic in pharmaceutical products. The physical method of testing packages is reliable and verifiable, unlike biological tests. With package leak detectors like FlexPax, businesses can detect leakages in packages before shipping the products.  Let us look at the importance of package Integrity. What is package Integrity?  Package integrity entails maintaining the exact configuration of products for the consumption of users. Manufactured food products need to keep their nutrients and quality. For pharmaceutical products, packaging will affect the safety and shelf life of the product. Reasons why Package Integrity matters Testing for leakage is a continuous process during the manufacturing process. Businesses must pay attention to the packaging needs of their products. The package leak detector is a tool for manufacturing industries to maintain integrity in their packaging. Excellent and efficient packaging will increase the customer base and appeal to potential consumers. It offers a competitive advantage over companies offering similar products. Let us look into some of the reasons why package integrity matters; It portrays the product quality Packaging offers the first impression for every potential client. A well-packaged item will appeal to a customer and prompt him/her to purchase the item. The packaging of food products needs to be secure from contamination. It is also the case of pharmaceutical products that are tight-packaged. A leakage in the packaging system will reduce the shelf life of such products. Offers protection to the product One of the primary purposes of packaging items is for product protection. The product must remain safe from the moment the manufacturers dispatch the item until it reaches the consumer. An ideal package should be resistant to damage while on the shelves. Package testing ensures that businesses find reliable methods to prevent tampering of the product. Specialized packages and seals help to discourage the sale of counterfeits. Is part of pharmaceuticals protocol Design The package design for pharmaceutical products needs testing before being qualified for selling. An accurate result in the testing process ensures that the product reaches the required specifications. The testing methods enhance the sterility and shelf life of the products. Testing using physical techniques is essential for package integrity. It prevents deterioration of the manufactured items during the transportation and storage process. Ensures the Safety of the Products Proper packaging ensures that manufactured products withstand forces that may cause damage. Businesses can show care about their customers by offering tamper proof products. It is critical for food items to maintain their nutritional value and taste. Checking against damage to the package ensures that the item reaches the client to enjoy as intended. There should be a minimal distortion to the product through leakage, compression, or impact. Instructions and user Information Package integrity also includes the ability to communicate with consumers. It is a way of offering consumers with safety and precaution measures. The package contains instructions about the product and shows the tests that the products go through in the production process.  Customers will know if the product package is damaged or not. Testing ensures high-quality Packaging Solutions The choice of packaging material should not react with the components in a product. It is critical to consider the effect of moisture and water to the product. A damaged product makes the manufacturers lose money. With the right testing technique, you can be sure that; External components such as moisture, air, and light do not penetrate the package. The product will maintain its quality and sterility. No physical damage happens during the shipping process. There is no contamination of the product. Conclusion It is bad for business when products are damaged and catastrophic when it poses a health risk to the consumer. Companies need to utilize the modern package testing techniques available.

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Corners not to cut when physically expanding your business

Even the fact that you are able to consider a physical expansion of your business is exciting. Of course, the reality is that it can be a costly affair, and many people will seek ways to reduce the financial outgoings. While doing that, it is essential to ensure that not all corners are cut. Continue reading for our advice on the matter. Go out to tender Everyone knows that you are supposed to get at least three quotes for any building work and then go for the middle one (or the one that sounds decent), right? What about if we said that this doesn’t always work out as well as you would imagine? Of course, we always advise going to tender and ensuring that you find out precisely what building firms are planning to charge you for. However, it is not always as straightforward as it seems. Many applications usually end up being dismissed after time has been spent reading them simply because they do not possess the necessary expertise. For this reason, many businesses are choosing to adopt a pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ) to ensure that the required criteria are met, and only those are then invited to tender. Employ your team wisely and fully informed Once you have narrowed down your options, it can still be tricky to choose which team’s services you wish to employ. We would also that you check out references and testimonials. Most businesses these days have their own websites and social media accounts. Although the reviews on their website may be cherry-picked, Facebook recommendations, for example, tend to be more accurate. Ask to look around recently finished developments, especially including those with design and within an industry similar to yours. Use decent materials It can be tempting to choose the cheaper options when the tradespeople approach you and ask for your choices. However, the least expensive choices can sometimes be hugely inferior. In the long run, spending a little extra could actually save you money. Materials, such as metals, that will last longer mean that you will not have to redo an area as early as you potentially would with cheaper choices. When you are looking round other recently expanded businesses, you could ask them if they are happy with their choices and what they would have done differently if they had the opportunity. Think big(gish) How often do you visit a brand new or expanded building and think, “Wow! Look at all that space!” Nine times out of ten, just a few short months down the line, the space has all been used up and there is no more room for growth. Before any building work begins and you are creating your masterplan, be sure to think a bit bigger than you ordinarily would have. Of course, conversely, it is important not to go overboard and build a warehouse when a shed would suffice, but it certainly is beneficial to look to the future. Yes, it will cost you more, but if you need to expand or move again in a year or two’s time anyway, it will be worthwhile.

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