Moving Office?

By , June 17, 2014

The decision to relocate your business can be quite a scary prospect.  To help, we have compiled a guide full of helpful advice and tips to ensure your office move goes smoothly and hopefully hassle free!

Stage 1

If you are leasing your current building check your contractual obligations and ensure notice is provided if required as part of your agreement.

Stage 2

So you have made the decision to relocate, the next step will be to compile a list of what your new premises needs to offer.  A clear understanding from the start will ensure you get the space required in the location suited to your business.

Things we suggest you include in your relocation list are:

  • Where is the desired new location – geographical area
  • How much space do you need? Do you require office space, warehouse space, customer areas?  (Don’t forget to allow room for future expansion!!)
  • When would you like to move?

Stage 3

To help ensure a successful move we advise you choose a office fit-out team with experience and expertise.   Your chosen partner will be able to offer a “move service” as well as providing advise, space planning and the supply of additional or new furniture.

By working with experienced industry professionals your office move will go ahead on time, to budget and with minimal  disruption to your everyday business.

Good office move experts will be able to co-ordinate the design and fit-out of your new offices (this may include using your  existing furniture) as well as migrating IT and data, business machines and archives.

Stage 4

At stage 4, we suggest making a budget spread-sheet.  This will allow you to keep on top of your relocation costs and ensure you keep to your dedicated budget.   Make sure you keep this budget spreadsheet updated, this will ensure you can negotiate or review your costs at anytime.

Stage 5

Ensure you seek legal advise before signing a new lease/rental agreement.   Your solicitor will highlight any potential liabilities or responsibilities.

Stage 6

Good communication is paramount to a successful office move.  Make sure you keep all employees updated and informed regularly.  This will help keep morale high whilst keeping the team motivated.

One sure thing we have learnt whilst being involved in many of our clients office moves is good communication and the regular consultancy and involvement with the team will help to make them less likely to be resilient to change!

Stage 7

Use your project planning documents, templates and checklists to help you plan the office move, but also act as your guide to carry out the many tasks involved with the project. Make sure you delegate individuals, teams or business partners and make sure they are fully aware of your expectations as well as your deadlines.

Stage 8

Why not take advantage of the pending office move and clear out everything you don’t need.   At stage 8, we also recommend you review your workplace suppliers. The office move will naturally encourage the review or transferring of office and telecom supplier contracts.

Stage 9

The relocation of your workplace will be a good opportunity to communicate to your clients.  To encourage customer retention make sure you keep everyone informed and aware of your change over date and the intention to continue with your successful working relationship.

If you need any further help or advise, or a full project managed service please contact us for a free consultation.

Furnishing your reception area effectively on a budget!

By , February 10, 2014

A reception makeover could quickly become an expensive project.  The following ideas highlight inexpensive suggestions how you could furnish any reception or office waiting area to a budget without compromising style and innovation!

A welcome desk or reception counter is the focal point for any office waiting area or reception, whether it is a modular solution or something bespoke and unique, there is a vast range of solutions available using a multitude of materials which can be used to coordinate your new look or blend seamlessly into your existing decor.

The Receptiv range of reception counters consist of a modular base and top unit which can be supplied in various sizes and finishes to suit your needs and with a full complimentary range of accessories including paper storage, CD racks, key lockers and secure pedestals.  Another quality of the Receptiv range is you can order units which allow for wheelchair access and accommodate DDA requirements.





You can view a further selection of reception desks, counters and pods here







Once you have chosen your reception unit, you will need to consider seating.  Did you know the average office waiting room is built to accommodate up to 10 guests?

To ensure you get the right chair, you will need to consider the style of chair you require.  Will they need to stack? Would you like arms? Wooden or metal frames? Modular chairs or bench systems?

The most economical style of reception waiting chairs is a basic side chair.  This style of chair will provide the user with comfort but will also be hard-wearing.  These chairs can be provided with or without arms in a number of different fabrics and colours.


Picture 036


You can view a further selection of visitor chairs and bench seating here








In addition to these budge reception style chairs, sofas and modular units are still a popular choice.






No reception or waiting area makeover project is complete without essential accent furniture. Essential products include coffee tables, wall art, plants and planters, lighting, and flooring solutions will help to complete your refurbished space.

By allocating yourself a budget for these style of products will ensure you won’t get carried away!  If you can’t afford an interior designers advice, research the internet for style ideas or ask your furniture supplier to supply a mood board to help you visualise colours and themes.

Remember you will rarely get a second chance to create a positive and lasting impression with your clients and we hope with our helpful tips and solutions you can find a reception solution which suits your business and budget.


Workplace Ergonomics

By , September 30, 2013

Applying ergonomics to your workplace can effectively improve health & safety.  Ergonomics is seen as a science concerned with the “fit” between people and their work.  Ergonomics ensures people and their requirements come first, with limitations and capabilities being reviewed and monitored.  Ergonomics will additionally encourage tasks, equipment, information and the environment is suitable for each worker and reduces the potential of accidents, injury or ill-health and improves performance and productivity.

When space planning the proposed office layout, careful consideration is taken to ensure human factors are considered.  It is important each ergonomic workstation has adequate leg space under the work surface.  All work surfaces need to be height appropriate for the tasks being performed ensuring comfortable posture positions with the correct style of seating suitable for the users height, build and individual back requirements.   Additionally all lighting should be reviewed and recommendations made if required to eliminate eye strain.  Ergonomic desktop accessories can be provided including monitor arms, footrests & wrist rests and will assist with good ergonomic human care.

The best way to review your current workplace ergonomics is to consult your employees.  Nobody understands or has the knowledge of the work they do, better than they do.  By analysing your own staff requirements and suggestions you can gain a better understanding of the problems they have, and their impact on Health & Safety and performance.  Here are some questions the Health & Safety Executive – Ergonomics and human factors at work brief guide; suggest you consider asking:


  1. Are their working postures comfortable (or not)?
  2. Do they experience discomfort, aches, pain, and fatigue or feel unable to keep up with the flow of work?
  3. Is the equipment appropriate, easy to use and well maintained?
  4. Is the person satisfied with their working arrangements?


By taking into consideration all of the above, you should be able to identify and make inexpensive changes yourself.  Don’t hesitate to contact us if you require any assistance.


Why you should choose Malcolm Andrew Office Solutions for all your educational furniture

By , September 17, 2013

About UsLayout 1

Established in 1982,  Malcolm Andrew Office Solutions have built a reputation as one of the leading providers of quality office furniture and office refurbishment to commercial, educational and public sectors in East Anglia.

Our wealth of experience, attention to detail, “can do” attitude and ISO9001 accreditation means that our clients are assured of excellent service regardless of the size of project.

We have established contracts with ESPO, CBC and Essex & Suffolk County Council’s as well as priding ourselves with a number of industry accreditations including:


Our Products & Services

With over 31 years established experience in the educational industry, we can confidently recommend the highest quality products at guaranteed low prices. from some of the largest manufacturers in the UK.

Whatever the size of your educational establishment,  we can help you to achieve inspirational surroundings with a complete range of standard and bespoke products for any area including Reception,  Classrooms,  Libraries,  ICT Suites,  Science Labs,  Café/Breakout, Changing Rooms and Storage.

A summary of our services we provide to all our clients include:

  1. Design & planning service
  2. Delivery & installation
  3. Removal of packaging
  4. Removal of redundant furniture
  5. Fully trained assembly team
  6. Delivery on own vehicles
  7. Guaranteed products – fit for purpose

Excellent Service

Our ISO 9001 quality management accreditation means we have procedures in place which ensures excellent levels of customer care.  Combined with a vast industry experience means you can be confident we can source the right furniture and equipment which exceeds your expectations and fulfils your budget requirements.


What makes Malcolm Andrew Office Solutions different to our competitors…?

We do not box shift!  All your furniture will be delivered, installed and set-up ready for use exactly where you want it!

Can’t find what you’re looking for?

We can source a wealth of education furniture and equipment solutions from our premiere partner manufacturers – contact us for a full product guide.

Take a look at our latest Just for Schools brochure here


Refresh Your Office!

By , August 16, 2013

Are your staff fully motivated and inspired every day?

Take a moment and have a good look around at your working environment before you answer ……

Do you have boring magnolia walls?  Miserable grey filing cabinets, Black  Chairs, Dull Carpets?

These lifeless colours make for a miserable working environment which can easily be corrected with our “pimp your office” tips and tricks!


Tip 1

Inject colour into your wall coverings!  A lick of paint will cost your business a minimal expense – but receive maximum results.  Bright colours are proven to motivate and improve moods.

Our advice is to pick your colours wisely, and remember you don’t need to limit yourself to corporate colours.  Think about who uses this environment, is it only your employees or do visitors enter this area too?

Every colour symbolises a meaning, what could your office say about your business?

  • Black can mean style and power
  • White can mean purity and cleanliness
  • Red can say strength and bravery
  • Blue symbolises calm, productiveness and confidence
  • Green symbolizes growth, harmony and freshness
  • Purple says power, nobility, luxury, and ambition
  • Orange means enthusiasm, flamboyance and creativity

Don’t worry if you get it wrong, it can be easily corrected!


Tip 2

Take a look at your workstation…. what does it say about you?  

Today’s modern offices are essentially designed open-planed, this encourages staff to integrate and work as a team.

Did you know the open plan office can be a more economical and a cheaper refurbishment option?  Bench Desking and Beam Desking provide economic solutions, by utilising shared components including leg frames, cable management and one piece tops.  By creating a cubicle-less area your team can communicate and more importantly you will improve productivity.

Bench Desking Idea’s…

BENCH Access Top Angled Leg


















Beam Desking Idea’s


















Tip 3

Office furniture can come in practically any colour you can think of.  If you have made a decision on your office colour scheme make sure you chose complimentary wood and fabric finishes.  Here are a few ideas…

Linnea 11












contents page image









Tip 4

We recommend you allow for a breakout area within your office structure.  A breakout zone is becoming a popular area within modern workplaces in the UK.   A well designed and equipped communal break out area can be used in a number of ways which can encourage staff interaction and team building as well as providing a haven for employees to break away from their screens.

Read more about breakout areas here

Here are some breakout area idea’s:


TAKE OFF Group 2























If you would like any further advice, contact our sales team – we can space plan your office and incorporate interior design proposals either onsite or we can produce CAD drawings or mood boards and present to you as a complete project managed service: Contact us



Which fabric to choose?

By , July 2, 2013

Picture 258With so many fabrics to choose from, where on earth do you start other than with a particular colour or design?  Well, here are a few other things to think about when you’re choosing fabrics for interior projects:

1. Think carefully about the type of furniture and where it’s going.  The furniture logos on swatch cards indicate task chairs, soft seating, or desk screens and panels.

2.  What’s the fabric composition?  The key split is between natural fibres and man-made synthetics.  There are environmental, performance and pricing implications of the raw material type.

3.  For elite environmental fabrics look for the Second Nature label, signalling recycled raw materials, renewable & compostable fibres, or climate neutral.

4.  Be careful about flammability performance – cigarette and match are the lower level basic FR standards for seating (sometimes termed Low Hazard) while Crib 5 offers higher fire security for public areas (also called Medium Hazard).

5.  And don’t get too hung up on the Martindale abrasion numbers – all fabrics meet severe contract abrasion performance and come with a comprehensive guarantee of wearability.

Information provided is courtesy of Camira Fabrics.

Camira Fabric – Cleaning+Guide

Good Fabric Care Guide

By , May 14, 2013

Welcome  to our “Good Fabric Care Guide”MOVE UP with Bench

Your seating fabric won’t look after themselves!  Every chair requires some TLC otherwise they could end up looking dirty or in very extreme cases the fabric can even wear through.

With our guide, you can easily refresh your workplace seating by removing unsightly stains or marks, and enhance the appearance and life-cycle of your furniture instantly.

Tip 1: Vacuum your seating regularly – this will remove dust and grit which can become ground in and cause unnecessary damage to the material.

Tip 2: Dab up fresh stains immediately – use kitchen roll or a damp cloth to soak up the liquid and use a branded upholstery cleaner which can be brought from any supermarket to clean the remainder of the stain.

Wool Upholstery
A wool upholstery fabric naturally retains it’s shape and appearance overtime.  It repels dust and dirt and will provide a natural stain resistance as spillages penetrate the fiber surface only very slowly. The cleaning recommendation for wool based upholstery is – vacuum regularly and shampoo / dry clean if required.  Be careful not to overwet wool as it can cause shrinkage or appearance changes.  Never apply bleach, ammonia, alkali or strong acids to wool upholstery.

Synthetic Upholstery
Polyester, polypropylene, and nylon are all types of synthetic fabrics. The main difference compared to wool is that they behave like plastic in that the fibres are all non-absorbent to liquid and moisture. This means that liquid spills and stains remain on the surface of the fibre rather than penetrating deeper within. Non-absorbent synthetics will not prevent liquid passing through the fabric to the foam. They will need more regular cleaning than wool, as their static charge attracts dust and dirt which, if not removed, can cause an unsightly build up of dirt on the surface of the fabric.

Stain removal guide
Spilt your morning coffee?  Act immediately to soak up as much of the fresh stain as possible.  Dab the stain with kitchen roll, a  towel or other absorbent material.

For dried in stains, vacuum then rub gently with a clean white damp cloth.  If the chair is still marked we recommend using a branded upholstery cleaner from the supermarket and follow the instructions on the packet.

Specific removal guidelines for some of the main stain hazards in the workplace and other contract areas are given below (care guide provided and recommended by Camira Fabrics):

Clean with surgical spirit or nail varnish remover, then wash using washing up liquid or hand-wash diluted in lukewarm water.

Chewing gum
Apply ice cubes in a plastic bag to freeze the gum, then crack it into loose pieces and remove. If unsuccessful, try using nail varnish remover followed by washing up liquid or hand-wash diluted in lukewarm water.

Drinks & foodstuffs
Use washing up liquid or hand-wash diluted in lukewarm water applied on a clean white cloth. If unsuccessful, try a branded upholstery cleaner such as Vanish.

Lipstick & nail varnish
Clean with surgical spirit or nail varnish remover, then wash using washing up liquid or hand-wash diluted in lukewarm water.

Please note: Be careful when using organic solvents such as nail varnish remover, surgical spirit or turpentine, as they can dissolve upholstery foams and plastics. Again, always try them on an unseen area first.

We hope you find our guide useful – if the stains are persistent try the recommendations again or alternatively you can consider professional cleaning.

 Information provided is courtesy of Camira Fabrics.

Camira Fabric – Cleaning+Guide

y form

Moving Office? Read our guide for a successful office move.

By , April 8, 2013

An office move or relocation can seem pretty daunting.  We have put together
an  easy to follow guide to ensure your office move goes smoothly and stress free.BiteCentreA

Step 1

Establish your reasons for your prospective office move – are you expanding, require a new lease, merging?

If applicable, check your current lease and your contractual obligations – do you need to give notice?

As a guide you should review your lease options 9-18 months prior to expiration, this is regardless of whether you are planning to renew, renegotiate or relocate.

Step 2

Write a list of what your new premises needs to offer. A clear understanding from the start will ensure you get the space required in the location suited to your business.  This can also help your property agent understand your requirements and aspirations from the very beginning.

Things to include in your wish list are:

  • What location/area do you want to move
  • How much space do you require? Do you need office space, warehouse space, customer areas?  Don’t forget to allow room for future expansion!!
  • What is your target move in date?

Don’t forget to consider the length of your new lease/rent or mortgage repayments.

Step 3

To ensure a successful move choose a moving office team with experience and expertise.  This team can be made up from personnel already working or associated with your business and should include:

  • Human Resources
  • Marketing
  • Finance / Accounts
  • IT & Communications
  • Property Agent
  • Solicitor
  • Office Fit-out Company
  • Office Removals (this will often be part of the office fit out companies added value solutions)

Step 4

If you have made an informed decision to move – this is when the fun commences!

Start with a budget spreadsheet, this will allow you to keep on top of your relocation costs and ensure you don’t go over your budget.  Once you have your budget worked out, collect quotes for everything covered in step 3.   Make sure you keep this budget planner spreadsheet updated, this will ensure you can negotiate or review your costs at anytime.

Step 5

By working with experienced industry professionals your office move will go ahead on time, to budget and with minimal  disruption to your everyday business.

Good office move experts will be able to co-ordinate the design and fit-out of your new offices (this may include using your  existing furniture) as well as migrating IT and data, business machines and archives.

Step 6

Seek legal advise before signing a new lease agreement! Your legal representative will ensure you are aware of any potential liabilities and responsibilities.

Step 7

One of the most important factors of a successful office move will be your staff.  Our advice – GOOD COMMUNICATION

Make sure you keep all employees informed on a regular basis. This will keep morale high and keep your team motivated. Consult and involve as much of your team as possible, the more they know the less likely they are to be resilient to change!

Step 8

Use your project planning documents, templates and checklists to help you plan the office move, but also act as your guide to carry out the many tasks involved with the project.
Make sure you delegate individuals, teams or business partners and make sure they are fully aware of your expectations as well as the deadline you are working towards.

Step 9

Take advantage of the foreseeable office move – clear out everything you don’t need!

Review your office suppliers.  The office move will trigger renewing / switching office and telecom supplier contracts.

Moving office will be a great opportunity to communicate to your customers, keep them informed and aware of your change over date.

We wish you every success with your office move and we hope you have found our guide helpful.  If you need any further help or advise, or a full project managed service please contact us for a free consultation.

Online ordering V’s Value for money Service

By , November 27, 2012


In the present economy, we have seen more and more people trying to buy office furniture and equipment “cheaply”.  Online ordering with EBAY, Amazon and other virtual shops has forced pricing to be the key decision element over quality and service –  Is this a false economy?


CHEAP Furniture

When buying Office Furniture you should consider it’s purpose, reliability and continuity.

Online sellers buy cheaply from manufacturers, with often the philosophy “what you see is what you get”, their suppliers will change continuously which may mean as your business grows, and you need to add additional furniture, your current furniture can’t be matched in style, colour or finish.

Warranty is usually offered, but this will normally be for a short-term period.  Your selected furniture will also be box-shifted, often left in your reception by a carrier leaving you to build up flat packed furniture and to dispose of any packaging.

But what happens, if you order incorrectly?  Often you will have 14 days for returns, but you could be responsible for repacking the goods and returning the items at your own cost and you may also be subject to a restocking charge (always read the small print!).

Lastly, consider if you will be able to get hold of spare parts should your gas lift on your chair became faulty or a lock on your filing cabinet becomes jammed – who do you contact?  Will the parts be easily available and who from your business will have the time to fix your “bargain” purchase?

True Value for Money

OK, if you go back to our first statement when buying office furniture and equipment you need to consider its purpose, reliability and continuity.

Most office furniture is brought for the business environment, which can have daily use for up to 8 hours a day.  Buying from a local office furniture dealer will provide you with many benefits to your business including the ability to be able to “try before you buy”.

Many dealers will have local showrooms full of innovative and stylish furniture to suit all budgets  from a multitude of manufacturers. What’s better than being able to sit in a chair and feel the comfort for yourself, or to recreate your office set-up so you can envisage exactly how your new arrangement will work and look?

If you’re looking for multiple pieces of furniture many office furniture suppliers will offer a free space planning service to not only ensure all your furniture will fit but so you can see the design and setup of your new area which will be designed for your office needs and with health & safety regulations in mind.

Furniture dealers will have quality and reliable manufacturers, and full product knowledge and experience of the furniture they supply. Warranty periods of around 5 to 10 years are normally offered which in turn will supply you with product continuity, reliability of spares and additionally it will be the dealers responsibility to fix or replace your faulty furniture.

Furniture from your local dealer will also mean your equipment will be delivered to the area of use, not just left in your reception.  Delivery on own vehicles eliminates the risk of damage in transit and ensures all of your furniture is built ready for use, cleaned and all packaging removed from site – FREE OF CHARGE! You could also benefit from furniture demonstrations i.e how to set up your new office swivel chair correctly from your trained delivery and installation technicians.

Aftercare will always be a priority for a quality office furniture dealer. Not only will communication be far easier with FREE advice, consultations and customer care, but you will also have access to all services offered which may include, office interiors, office accessories, business machines, business printing, signage, office supplies, plants and planters and stationery.


We will leave you to make your own mind up whether buying cheaply over a value service is the right solution for your business!



Style in the boardroom….

By , October 16, 2012
Boardroom Tables


Your boardroom furniture sets the precedence of your business.  A well designed, stylish and practical boardroom will create the perfect image for your business whilst impressing your potential customers.  In our opinion, the boardroom is one of the most important areas of any business.

Boardroom tables can vary in finish and can be designed and created in a size and shape of your choice.  Real wood veneer finishes will create a high quality area whilst combining functionality and design.  Toughened clear or frosted glass top boardroom tables are a modern and stylish solution offering contemporary style with a design that’s functional as well as being aesthetically pleasing and perfect for formal and informal meetings.  Additionally, If that wasn’t enough choice, you can also choose from a wide selection of legs and bases, including arrowhead, panel horn, cow horn or box base legs.

Bespoke boardroom furniture can be designed to capture the essence of your business or brand whether you are looking for a modern or contemporary style to suit a new or historic building.  The use of electronic equipment in boardrooms has vastly increased in the last decade.  The perfect boardroom furniture can integrate modern technology including white boards, interactive boards, projectors, laptops, data and power modules.

The practicality of your boardroom table needs some serious consideration.  Ensure your table sits comfortably in your room and probably most importantly make sure it can seat the numbers you require, the last thing you want to do is squeeze 15 people round a table that was designed for 8.
Your  boardroom seating needs equal consideration.  Exceptional seating design flair solutions will ensure posture support and comfort are brought together to satisfy any boardroom or formal meeting room.  Leather, fabric or polypropylene finishes can all be sourced to compliment your chosen style of boardroom table.
The creation of your boardroom is only limited by your imagination!  If you would like some advice or a free consultation to help create the perfect boardroomcontact us today.


We can provide table options in MDF, Veneer wood or stylish glass toped with panel ends, simplistic beam design, stylish leg frames, wire management beams or cantilever frame solutions all in a variety of shapes & sizes.

Theme by QuercusFortis ©2012 Malcolm Andrew Office Solutions

%d bloggers like this: