make your office wall partitions more flexible
The image some people have in their minds about office wall partitions is not always positive; a cubicle farm is seen as symbolic of modern office settings, the epitome of uniformity and blandness. This cubicle arrangement was designed to give employees a greater degree of privacy and personalisation than was found in the previous work environment, which consisted of desks lined up in rows in an open room.
But this is now an old-fashioned view of office wall partitions which space-pod uses meet the requirements of new technologies, new ways of working and an enhanced understanding of how environment affects productivity. Modern offices are changing, with partitioning systems playing a vital role in how offices look, feel and perform.
Businesses grow (or shrink), change and evolve, and it is vital to have the flexibility to change layout and office design. In today’s constantly shifting work environment, with some companies experiencing particularly high churn rates, this is more important than ever.
Rather than a company fitting its work patterns around a building – especially in the case of older buildings – partitions allow the business to tailor its working environment to the way it wishes to work. Carrying out structural changes to a building to facilitate this would be very costly, so modern partitioning is less disruptive to work, more cost effective, and an infinitely more versatile way to achieve these ends.
Working styles designing a new office layout using partitions
When designing a new office layout using office wall partitions, it is important to consider how the occupants work, or how you would like them to work, and consider the amount of interaction and human contact that work style requires. For example:
Pooled workflow: individuals working alone, adding to the overall group effort so no group interaction required.
Sequential workflow: tasks that move from one member of the team to another.
Reciprocal workflow: similar to sequential workflow, but in this case the flow of work can move in either direction, back and forth.
Intensive workflow: work flows in many directions between all members of the team, and the group must collaborate closely to complete the task.
Of course, most teams don’t fall strictly into one category. There are generally four types of office design which can be mixed and matched to suit the type of workspace required for the work being carried out. Partitions offer designers the perfect way to create these spaces – and change them as work patterns change. For example:
Cellular office: single and multi-person offices along the building’s façade with a common corridor to provide access. This works well where there is autonomous work that requires concentration, or where confidential meetings need to take place. An office with a door is sometimes a double-edged sword – status symbol, or barrier to communication?
Combination office: single or multi-person offices grouped around a shared central area (the middle zone) where communication and interaction takes place. Often corridor walls are transparent. This style suits where workers often switch between individual work requiring concentration and communicative project or team work.
Team office: this type of office places an emphasis on flexibility and interchangeability with a mix of layouts within the floor or building. Partly open and transparent, it is suitable for a wide array of work, such as team building, project work, concentration and communication.
Open office: openness and communication are key here, but there is still access to privacy when required.
All of these office types can be created using modern office partitioning and changed to suit evolving work practices and requirements. It’s also worth remembering that in April last year the tax status of demountable and relocatable partitioning systems (like Komfort’s Ls90) changed to offer enhanced tax writing-down allowance incentives over traditional building materials like block-work or dry-lining. This equates to an initial cash value of 7.5 per cent of the installed cost at the time of the end user paying corporation tax.
Modern office wall partitions benefits
Modern office wall partitions also provide acoustic, fire and structural properties, which further enhance the working environment. Acoustic performance is obviously vital in offices where privacy is required, and where workers need to work without the distraction of noise from outside their office. Modern partitioning systems like the Komfort Ls90 flush frameless system can offer acoustic attainment of up to 45dB (Rw) in its solid form.
Fire performance requirements don’t need to restrict freedom of design.
Modern technology permits the use of glass in the most aesthetically sensitive areas without compromising fire safety standards.
Space-pod uses Komfort Glazed Fire Screens, which offer a comprehensive range of fire resistant glazing systems, from the latest silicone butt jointed technology, to the very highest performance timber and steel framed systems, offering up to 2 hours for integrity and insulation.
The Glazed Fire Screens division are specialists in the field of fire resistant glazing, both framed and frameless, and can offer help in developing cost effective solutions to meet the most demanding specification.
A team of specialists provide technical support from your initial enquiry through estimating, design, manufacture and site installation, all backed up by relevant BS 476 approvals.
As well as making a significant design contribution to the aesthetics of a workplace, modern partitioning can help to optimise productivity and make a significant contribution to the space’s fire, acoustic and accessibility performance.
Moveable Office Walls
Komfort 80 is ideal for use in meeting rooms, class rooms and offices. Made up of individual panels, it is designed to give economical but long lasting use in the division of spaces requiring flexibility, offering good levels of sound reduction and a high quality finish.
Panels are clad with two sheets of high quality chipboard on a twist resistant aluminium frame with exposed satin anodised aluminium edge profiles to all four sides as standard. Panels incorporate top and bottom retractable seals operated by a single cam action with interlocking male/female profile rebates on the vertical edges.
Panels can incorporate TE telescopic, NE Standard, DT full height hinged door, SE single leaf inset pass door, corner/junction and glazed panels if required.
Panels are suspended from heavy duty aluminium ceiling tracks requiring no fllor guides. Suspention is available using type ‘E’ single point, type ‘Z’ twin point guide roller and type ‘K’ twin point cross roller system options.
Komfort 200 is primarily supplied as a floor supported option where overhead support in unavailable or when client’s budgets dictate an economic answer. Alternatively, a top hung system requiring no floor track is also available when an adequate support structure is in place. Panels are connected by attractive matching satin anodised aluminium hinges, forming a flat wall when positioned across the opening.
A locking arrangement giving panels extra stability. Each alternate panel contains an espagnolette bolt mechanism operated via a detachable handle at a convenient height from the floor. The locking pin engages the floor rail or top track to ensure the panels close flat, flush and rigid. The leading panel in the opening can be used as a full height pass door if required. Pass doors have flush pull handles and roller catch fitted; a lock can be fitted as an optional extra.
The floor supported option allows panels to run on a shallow 9mm high aluminium floor rail designed to fit over a raised floor or floor screed. Protruding only 4mm above a finished floor service the rail is designed to avoid tripping and dirt accumulation. A butyl rubber channel seal fitted to the bottom of each panel, brushes the floor rail surface only to prevent drag and wear on the floor finishes.
Lateral stability of the system is achieved via self lubricating nylon rollers running in a non load bearing adjustable aluminium ceiling track to compensate for variances in height. Bottom rollers fitted to alternate panels incorporate axial and radial ball bearings, which are dimensioned to bear considerably greater loads than actually exist.
komfort partitioning & glazed walls
Space-pod uses the Komfort range of internal partitons, glazed walls and office space dividers, because they help us to add style, substance and functionality to the modern office environments that we create.
Komfort is the UK’s market leader in the design and manufacture of commercial glazed and solid partitioning, laminate, timber and veneered doors, movable walls and storagewall. With 13 partitioning systems in their range along with movable walls, sliding partitions, demountable partitions, timber, veneered and laminate doors, glass doors, ceilings, blinds and graphics they help space-pod to accommodate any style from contemporary to traditional.
The Komfort partitions also achieve strong fire, acoustic and structural performance through stringent testing. This means that space-pod can guarantee the safest and widest product offering in the UK’s Commercial Interiors Sector and means our office partitions conform to building regulation requirements.
When it comes to structural strength, fire and sound performance, Komfort operates an uncompromising programme of product testing to ensure peace of mind. Their glazed and solid, fire and non fire rated partitioning and doors are independently tested at authorised laboratories in accordance with the relevant British Standard.
- Full accreditation to BS EN ISO 9001, 14001 and OHSAS 18001.
- Full IFC certification for FD30 and FD60 30 and 60 minute fire rated doors and door kits.
- FSC certification.
- Carbon Trust Standard.
- Achilles Building Confidence Accreditation.
Space-pod accepts our responsibility to work safely, cleanly and in a way which is caring to our staff, our customers, our community and the environment.
We have introduced a number of initiatives designed to continuously improve our quality, health & safety and environmental performance, to ensure that our staff are safe and give our customers confidence and peace-of-mind that we will act responsibly at all times. READ MORE >