Flexible workspace provider x+why is converting phone booths in its office spaces into Zoom Booths, as part of a range of post-coronavirus initiatives designed to encourage people back into the office.
The Zoom Booths will be fitted with perimeter lighting, to avoid shadows under the eyes; acoustic enhancements; and backdrops to prevent silhouetting caused by white walls.
It is also introducing smaller meeting rooms for team video conferencing calls and, in anticipation of businesses down-sizing office space, has added large flexible collaboration rooms, called Mission Rooms, to provide the extra space needed when all employees, including a company’s home-workers, are in the office.
Other pandemic-induced initiatives that it will be introducing into its Whitechapel, Hoxton and Spitalfields offices and its new sites in Holborn and Cambridge include: wider corridors to increase air circulation and allow people to pass each other safely; on-site coronavirus tests; and key rings that let you open doors without touching handles.
A Room of your own
ROOM has expanded its portfolio of modular, flat-packed office solutions with a new product suite that enables companies to install a ready-to-use video-conference room in a day.
ROOM Co-founder Morten Meisner-Jensen said: “We’re building a future where data-driven, modular build-out replaces fixed construction. Our inaugural product, the soundproof Phone Booth, introduced thousands of customers to the idea of flexible workspace environments, and we’re excited to launch the Meeting Room and the Open Meeting Room to further our mission of creating the purpose-built workspaces of tomorrow.”
The Meeting Room and Open Meeting Room come with an integrated whiteboard (Standard version) and Jabra PanaCast 180-degree video conferencing camera (Pro version), plus ROOM’s proprietary Room Sense analytics platform, which provides real-time data on space utilisation and office density.
Key features include acoustically insulated walls; silent fans that replenish the air every 67 seconds; adjustable lighting; a custom rail for coat hooks and shelves; motion sensors; and wireless charging.
ROOM’s third new product, the Focus Room, is a private office designed to maximise focus and productivity.
The Open Meeting Room costs £11,995/£13,495 (Standard/Pro) and the Meeting Room £13,495/£14,995 (Standard/Pro).
Pod as a service
To meet the needs of businesses in today’s uncertain times, Welltek is giving customers the opportunity to rent Framery Pods rather than buy them outright. With a minimum commitment of only 3 months and just 1 month’s cancellation period, the subscription service enables customers to enjoy the acoustic booths without a long-term financial commitment.
Welltek is one of the world’s biggest dealers of Framery pods, phone booths and soundproof private spaces, including the Framery O pod (£235 per month), for making private calls or enjoying some peace and quiet, and the Framery Q pod (£450 per month), for office work or small team meetings of up to four people.
Ergo Real Estate’s £1.6m office refurbishment at 148 and 154 Great Charles Street in Birmingham’s central business district (CBD) features a state-of-the-art lighting solution designed to keep spaces germ-free. FUZONE500 lighting uses the natural properties of Ozone (O3) to eliminate up to 99.99% of unwanted bacteria and airborne viruses without direct contact with treated areas. Unlike ultraviolet light, FUZONE 500 can be operated whilst premises are fully occupied.
MyLocalDesk.co.uk has been set up to meet professionals’ demand for office space close to their homes. In a survey by the online desk match-making service, 40% of people said they were worried about using public transport to get to work and almost one third said they would prefer to work for their current employer, but closer to their home.
MyLocalDesk.co.uk founder Neil Fullbrook said: “Working from the kitchen table or sofa aren’t long-term solutions. Office-based businesses and HR departments need to adapt to become more locally focused in order to retain valuable staff, safeguard their wellbeing and ensure business prosperity moving forward. By offering local desks in local businesses for local people we’re helping potentially thousands to cut the commute!”MyLocalDesk.co.uk pairs businesses/building owners that have spare desk space to rent with employees of other organisations that need somewhere to work closer to home. It also offers a desk finding service for companies that require more than five desks.
PPE screens of the future
Summit Defence, a provider of protective screens for hospitals, businesses and schools, has created a mock-up of what a multi-functional PPE screen of the future could look like. Key features include:
* Glass monitors built into the three-sided glass structure;
* Mousepad and keyboard built into the tabletop for easy cleaning;
* Integrated video calling to others in the same room for collaboration with social distancing;
* Alerts that light up the top of the screen for easy visibility in classrooms, for example;
* Blackout functionality that turns the wraparound screen black for privacy;
* Integrated sound system with built-in wireless headphones; and
* Mirrored screens so that you can display material on the outward-facing side of the screen.