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blueprint storage systems

Adaptable Equipment for Flexible Architect Offices: From Mobile Blueprint Storage Systems to Adjustable Tables

Adaptable Equipment for Flexible Architect Offices: From Mobile Blueprint Storage Systems to Adjustable Tables

What is a Flexible Office Space?

If there’s a trending term nowadays in the business world is: flexible. Flexible hours, flexible location, flexible schedule. A company’s ability to adapt to young workers’ needs and requests is considered a top trait among job seekers; now businesses are also inclining for flexible office space.

The concept offers an alternative to traditional office solutions by providing companies a choice on adjustable space, depending on their specific needs at the moment; there is no need to commit to a fixed layout or even a rigid lease contract. A flexible workspace, also called flexispace or shared office, is typically supplied with a typical, basic setup that includes desks, chairs, phone lines, and other fundamental equipment. This space is utilized by employees who otherwise would need a home-office, or by workers that telecommute, yet need a physical space, even for a few hours.

In terms of leasing, flexible office space differs from traditional space since month-to-month contracts are the norm; in reality, most companies find the arrangement so comfortable they extend their contracts for six months up to two years. There’s also the advantage of not having to give notice before vacating longer than four weeks. Moreover, since the spaces are up-and-ready, for the most part, organizations save themselves from the hassle of troublesome moving. Nonetheless, certain aspects such as insurance, the need for a deposit and the option to have the space furnished or not, stay the same.

Advantages of Flexible Office Space – why is it so appealing to businesses?

•    Reduction in cost. No matter how eager a company can be to attract Gen Y and Z’s talent to their workforce, profit still occupies their number one priority. Reduced overheads are cited as the top quality of flexispace; the money saved can be utilized to more remunerable activities such as sales or marketing, instead of being invested in the rental of physical space. The first factor that contributes to this cost cut is the fact that there is no need to have staff members dedicated to managing the admin work. The second is that commonly the rates comprise services such as electricity, heating, parking, and other utilities, whereas in traditional arrangements those are charged separately. Having a fixed cost per month makes forecasting and planning much simpler and accurate.

•    Flexibility. In the past, workspaces were considered merely as the physical space in which workers spent their days.The focus has shifted and now, smart, modern businesses see their workspace as a tool. Every aspect of a company must be seen as a potential income-raiser, and flexible workspaces accomplish it by molding accordingly to a particular company’s needs, requirements and preferences. Depending on the niche, companies may find specific arrangements more suitable to help their workers spark creativity, avoid distractions, or make team collaborations run more smoothly. If you have seen Google’s famous headquarters, you understand why they have become an epitome of what an inventive office must look like aimed to potentialize the imagination of those within. Of course, there is no need to have a slide in your office like Google does, but the capacity to mold your space to different activities is a proven, incredible tool.  Adjustable tables, modular elements, and modern room divisions help organizations with the versatile dynamics of their office landscape.

•    Teamwork. The foundation behind co-working offices and flexible workspaces are building a sense of community among its members. These spaces stimulate collaboration and interaction way more than the traditional closed-door approach. The real advantage comes from the flexibility companies have to set the level of communication among its employees; they may want to encourage it or even diminish it. Certain spaces may require privacy, concentration and even silence, which is also doable with the right tools.

•    Engagement with customer service. The flexible workspace industry takes pride in having excellent customer service. These spaces have set a whole new standard regarding work amenities such as healthy snacks, coffee, recreational and fitness areas Providers state the primary goal is to provide a work experience around happiness. Who wouldn’t want that for their business?

How does one make the transition? Three easy, basic steps to follow

Step #1: Do your homework first

It is easy to get over excited a worldwide trend and try to implement it without researching or getting to know one’s needs first. Companies must first ask themselves the following question: where do we see this business in 5-10 years? This is directly linked to the organization’s strategic planning and what kind of activities and people they foresee in the short and long term. Based on that analysis, management may propose what kind of changes they would like to see regarding physical space.

Step #2: Give your employees a voice

Despite being hard to accept or believe, no one knows what an office needs like your employees; even if you own the business. Give your employees the opportunity to voice their opinions regarding what would work better for them. Providing autonomy goes a long way.Plus, chances are they will welcome the change more openly if their petitions have been heard.

Step #3: Do not follow the trend blindly

No matter how tempting it is to copycat a space that looks ideal, modern or chic, do not follow the current so easily. Invest in critical elements, go for natural, classic colors and pick components that are uncomplicated to move, take apart or repurpose.

Key elements in a flexible architect workspace

When we mentioned Google’s headquarters, the colorful spaces, the modern modular equipment and of course, the famous slide comes to mind. The key element of a shared office is not the amenities nor the furniture, but the tools that make it as flexible as possible. When it comes to choosing components for an architect office and make it a flexible workspace, Blueprint storage systems have to be the first ingredient for a successful transition. 

Blueprints are to an architect what surgical tools are to a doctor. If you think of a regular day at the office the need to have modern, top-quality blueprint storage systems is the first thing that comes to mind if the transition to flexible workspaces is desired. Offices in the design/construction niche are focused on having the ability to store their documents safely and to be capable of retrieving them with no hassle.

Big Blueprint Hanger is a leader in providing adaptable products that not only keep blueprints and other documents secured but contribute to making a space more flexible. Architects could utilize versatile furniture to create flex space by using one or several of the following products regarding blueprint storage systems:

•    1.-  Mobile Plan Center. Ideal for document storage and organization for engineering, architectural, art and other large documents.  It comes in three different options: with 12 24”, 12 30” or 12 36” clamps. Its sturdy but easy-to-move casters make the plan center perfect for relocation and consultation.

•    2.- Rolling Stand Rack. By keeping your drafts, maps, or blueprints stored vertically in a rolling stand rack, not only are you protecting the information; you are saving space. You may easily roll the frame from one office to another if needed. Big Blueprint Hanger offers these in five different options with 12 pivot hangers and 12-18” to 12-42” clamps.

•    Caster Sets. You can effortlessly transform a rack into a movable one with one of Big Blueprint Hanger caster sets. These also come in handy when the adaptations or arrangements need to be made at a moments notice. Casters come in sets of four, and they include heavy-duty base plates and hardware. (2 swivel and 2 swivel/brake).

•    Plan tables. Coming in two primary colors and a wide variety of sizes, plan tables are solid ¾” work surfaces that enable the view of engineering and architectural plan files. They are durable, economical and they can be dismantled with no effort if they need to be relocated. There is a 3” front edge that prevents the documents from falling.

•    Specialty racks. Big Blueprint Hanger knows that needs and requirements come in all sizes and colors when it comes to blueprint storage system solutions. Hence they accommodate clients’ needs by custom-making racks and carts that are inexpensive yet sturdy. Capacity ranges up to 600 lbs per shelf.

Aside from seeking for solutions regarding blueprint storage and systems in general; other less obvious components from offices are being rethought based on flexibility, a clear example: chairs. Traditional working chairs were standardized for floor-employees and a little bit upgraded for ranking positions. The current approach is different. Chairs and seating spaces are redesigned based on privacy, not only comfort. Options range from privacy sofas when space is required but there is also a need for concentration, to privacy pods when high-walled furniture creates isn’t quite enough. Similar alternatives exist for desks and tables where mobility and quickness to assemble are the two top traits.

Is Flexible workspace for you?

By the end of 2017, almost 1.5 million people worldwide had worked in a flexible workspace and predictors assure by 2030 up to 30% of the corporate portfolio will make the transition from traditional arrangements.

Flexible office spaces enable organizations to act fast if they need a temporary space or to access a new market. They also see it as a tremendously useful tool to swift the working culture. This does not mean companies are moving entirely away from open offices; on the contrary, is the hybrid of the two approaches that make this concept alluring – the best of both worlds combined. This solution provides the balance of covering an employee’s needs with the need for interaction and collaboration. Architectural work is solidly founded on those principles: effective communication, brainstorming, and overall creativity; therefore exploring the idea may result in a game changer for your company.

blueprint storage rack

Complete Guide to Making Blueprints & The Perfect Blueprint Hanging Rack

Complete Guide to Making Blueprints & The Perfect Blueprint Hanging Rack

If you’re designing a home, office or other space, you’ll definitely need to know how to make a blueprint.  Perhaps you’ll prefer to use the traditional method of drawing your blueprints by hand using rulers and other special measuring tools. Or you may like to take advantage of modern technology by utilizing computer programs such as AutoCad or Home Design to design your blueprints. Many people like to combine hand sketching with a computer program to take advantage of the perks of both methods. And of course, once you have your design all figured out, you’ll need to follow the actual process for turning your design into a proper blueprint, through use of a special blueline machine.

Once you have your blueprints made, you’ll want the perfect blueprint hanging rack to keep your blueprints protected and organized. Big Blueprint Hanger can provide you with all your blueprint storage needs—browse the website to find the perfect hanging rack for you. Big Blueprint Hanger specializes in custom carts and blueprint storage systems to fit your unique needs—so as you’re designing you can rest assured knowing you have a system in place to protect and organize your finished product.

By Hand or Computer Program

Making a blueprint design by hand is, of course, the original method for creating an architectural design. For some, it remains the preferred method because of a kinetic creative connection to using physical tools and drawing. However, creating a blueprint design by hand can be the preferred option for a couple of other reasons as well. 

For one thing, it can take a long time to master the design computer programs. Until you’ve really learned how to work the programs, they can be ineffective for the detail you will want. In addition, the less expensive programs don’t generate the sort of detail required for full construction drawings. Without this detail, it will be difficult to get your blueprint approved for a building permit.

On the other hand, computer programs have some super benefits that are preferable for many architects. For example, home design programs can help you visualize your floor plan in 3D. The programs also help you quickly generate a visualization of your ideas and designs. For example, you can easily modify your drawings by moving walls around, dragging around furniture and appliances and generally refining your design as you make adjustments in the space. 

A few design programs that are popular include the older Autocad and the newer Home Design.

Perhaps the best option is to combine hand drawing with a computer program so you can take advantage of the best of both worlds. Regardless of the method you choose, you’ll want to begin by drawing up a floor plan.

How to Make a Floorplan

For sketching a floor plan design, you’ll need a variety of tools to assist with making straight lines and keeping things in proportion.

Some of these tools include:

  • Architect’s scale (a ruler that keeps your drawing in scale)
  • T-square
  • Adjustable triangle
  • Erasing shields (for accurate erasing of only specific parts of your drawing)
  • Compass
  • Symbol template
  • Long metal ruler or straight edge
  • Tracing paper
  • Utility knife
  • Parallel ruler (for drawing parallel lines)

The blueprint page

Lay out a sheet of paper 24” by 36” on a large, flat table. You will reserve the lower right hand corner for the title block, which includes essential information such as the name of the view (floor plan, cross section or elevation plans), the scale of the drawing, the name of the house, designer’s name and the date. 

Draw the exterior walls

First thing’s first, you will need to draw the exterior wall. Using an architect’s scale and straight edge, draw the inside dimensions of the exterior wall, followed with the outside dimensions of the exterior wall (walls can be anywhere from a few inches to a few feet thick).

Draw the interior walls

Now you’ll want to add both sides of the interior walls to demarcate rooms.

Draw the doors and windows

Add in doors and windows using the appropriate symbols for each.

Label the rooms

It’s important to have clear labels in the center of each room so you can easily locate the space.

Locate the appliances, plumbing and fixtures

Using your scale, symbols template and straight edge, insert the symbols for the appliances, the built in furniture (like kitchen and bathroom cabinets and counters), plumbing items such as sinks, toilets and tubs, fireplaces and equipment such as furnaces, air conditioning units and water tanks.

Draw electrical symbols

Draw the appropriate symbols in the walls and ceilings for electrical items such as plug outlets, fans, and door bells.

Label floor surfaces

Indicate how the floors in each room will be finished—with wood, carpet or tile, for example, and the thickness of material used (i.e. hardwood ½ “ ).

Write out dimensions for your plans

You’ll need to write out all the dimensions now for each room, the doors, the windows, closets, cabinet depths, etc.

Create window and door schedule

After labeling all your doors and windows with a number or letter, make a list in the blank space of your design page with two columns. In the first write the labels and in the second the specifics for the type of doors and windows desired.

Elevation Plans and Cross Section Plans

Now that you’ve finished your floor plan, you will want to create an elevation plan, as well as a cross section plan. With these various views of the house, you will have a complete design that you can take to your builder and local planning department for approval. These pages will make a nice little blueprint compilation that you can hang on your blueprint hanging rack. But first, you’ll want to run them through a blueline machine to turn them into proper blueprints.

Blueline Machines

Once you’ve created your blue print sketch or computer mock up, you’ll be wanting to transform your vision into an actual blue blueprint—that is, a handsome white on blue reproduction of the sketch that is easy to read. Through a use of a special blueline machine, architect drawings can be easily and inexpensively reproduced to create the classic blueprint.

But how does the machine work?

Similar to developing photographs, a blueline machine uses various chemicals, including ammonia, and light to create a stable, well preserved (and blue!) copy of the original print.  A blueline machine relies on the ability for light to pass through a document for it to work. Therefore whether you are using a CAD print or a manually-produced drawing, you’ll need it to be printed on a vellum or another medium that is transparent enough that it allows light to pass through.

Do note that if you make your drawing or CAD print on a non-transluscent paper or medium, you won’t be able to put it through the blueline machine. You will, however, be able to use a large format copy machine to make a black on white copy of your design.


How to use a blueline machine

To start with, you’ll want to take one page of your original drawings and one sheet of diazo paper. Place the diazo paper on top of your drawing and match all the edges until the two sheets appear as one.

Now, feed the sheets into the machine on the lower roller sections. As the sheets move slowly through the machine, they’ll be exposed to ammonia and a black light. When they come back out of the machine, you will peel away your original drawing/print and put it aside.

Next, you’ll want to run the diazo paper back through the machine on the top roller section. You can continue to run your diazo paper through the machine as many times as you like, depending on how fresh your ammonia is, the speed at which you exposed the first run, and how blue you want your print to be.

Repeat this process for each sheet in your design set. After copying all your designs, you may like to create a binder for your blueprint. You can do this by running a single sheet of diazo paper through the machine by itself. This will expose the entire sheet, turning it dark blue. You can staple this to your drawing set to hold your blue prints together.

The final step is to hang your beautiful new blueprint on your blue print hanging rack!


The Best Blueprint Hanging Rack

It won’t be difficult to find the perfect blueprint hanging rack because Big Blueprint Hanger has a variety of hanging racks to fit any space and budget. The Glide-Out Rack, for example, enables easy access to your blueprints since they can be mounted beneath work surfaces. The drawer-like slide in/out action makes accessing your blueprints super convenient while also saving you space.

glide out blueprint storage rack

The shelf conversion racks, on the other hand, make use of space you already have but are not fully utilizing. All you need to do is furnish the inside dimensions of your cabinet, and Big Blueprint Hanger will manufacture custom racks to fit your needs.

blueprint storage rack

However, perhaps the BEST blueprint hanging racks are the two tier storage racks which allow you to store more blueprints in less space than any other system. This compact but industrial strength storage system has various sizes available, but Big Blueprint Hanger can manufacture a rack to fit any space.  Beam levels adjust on 1 ½“ centers to fit numerous plans on the same rack. It can even be put on wheels to make it easy to move around based on your needs.

All of the storage racks at Big Blueprint Hanger are made from recycled steel and covered with environmentally-friendly paint, so you can rest assured you are using the most conscientious racking product available.

Why Paper Still Dominates the Office & How Our Job Jackets Will Keep Yours Organized & Efficient

Why Paper Still Dominates the Office & How Our Job Jackets Will Keep Yours Organized & Efficient

 

The Electronic Era is upon us, and that is an undeniable fact. Some investigators claim people spend more than half of their day reading from a screen. Mobile devices, cloud-apps and instant messaging are becoming mainstream for sharing information; in other words: digital media is our primary form of communication. Therefore, you might think that the amount of paper being consumed by offices and companies has drastically reduced, and that is far from the truth.

 

Recognized market research consultants, such as Wakefield Research and InfoTrends, discovered that nowadays, company owners and managers claim their employees still utilize the company’s printer at least twenty times a week; and they spend over $20,000  per year managing and filing the 5,000 pages they print each month.  If you work for a private company in the US, there is a 30% chance you are ordering and utilizing more paper now than five years ago.

 

Some trends indicate that with the advent of the Internet, some tasks such as scanning, printing, and copying increased notoriously in the workspaces. The reason is simple: internet content is immense; the more information there is, the more prints there will be. At least for now, we can be sure beyond doubt paper is not going anywhere.

 

According to experts, since paper is still in vogue, protecting printed, sensitive information should be a top priority in every company. Our job jackets are the best way to keep your important documents clean, safe, and well organized.

 

It may be obvious to learn that newspapers, publishing companies, and commercial printers utilize a vast amount of paper; nonetheless, organizations related to legal, healthcare and education sectors are likely to use paper daily. Almost every transactional activity performed in departments like finances or human resources print and scan as part of their daily workflow. Filing and archiving is an everyday chore in these areas.  If your paperwork is giving you a headache, be sure to check out our variety of job jackets that will help your team manage their workflow from job to job.

 

Paper is still and will be for a long time the universal mode when it comes to sharing information.  For instance, it is easier to read and analyze a long document in print than on-screen; paper is portable, and some companies like to use it to depict how they run “business-as-usual.” Most clerks and office employees admitthey rely on paper to comply with their daily tasks. Examples of documents that are mandatory printed are contracts, purchase orders, packing lists and, in some cases invoices. Not every organization accepts digital signatures and therefore requests a printed version of the document, whether it is a business or legal transaction. What better way to see all of your job contracts, POs and invoices than in our flexible adhesive job jackets, which make it easy to view your workflow processes at-a-glance.

 

Experts and consultants recommend having a hard-copy of the following stored in a safe place:

 

  • Company Licenses. The reason why you need copies of your permits and business licenses is simple: regulations dictate you must do so.  Besides having any document with the original signature should always be kept in physical form in a secure place. This also applies to any permits or certifications the company has; not only is it mandatory to have them printed, but it is also convenient.

 

  • Emergency Plans. Ina power failure emergency, there is no way to consult an emergency plan including natural disaster procedures, evacuation policies, and contingency plans.

 

  • Passwords. There is one place where hackers won’t be able to meddle with your information: paper. All relevant passwords must be kept in a physical copy. Also, of course, this needs to be filed and stored in a proper location.

 

If you have trouble picturing which documents you need physically, think of a power failure; now think of the information you need to keep your daily business routine going. Those are the documents you need to maintain organized and safely stored.

 

There is a vast number of other examples of when to keep a printed copy of a document, without relying solely on the digital one. It all depends on the business field. For example, architectural and engineering firms work with real blueprints (check out our blueprint storage racks here)  All transactions regarding stocks and their distribution to partners need to have a physical copy as well. Not to mention, to this day, many organizations haven’t been able to replace the fax machine with any other device. The low cost involved in faxing, its simplicity and ease of tracking makes its advantages unbeatablethus far.

 

The majority of the companies –around 70%- utilize a mixture of physical and digital storing of the archive’s the company’s information. Odds are, they have two copies –one of each- containing the most critical piece of data.

 

Another interesting trend depicts how companies are seeking to transform the workplace into a much user-friendly space. This translates into everything from making workstations comply with ergonomic policies to corporations relocating printers from across the hall to spots closer to the employee. The average American employee spends 8.8 hours in the office, so the desire for making it as amicable as possible makes sense.  That being said, the more user-friendly your workspace becomes, the more likelihood your essential documents are at risk: of being damaged, torn, smeared or lost. This is even truer for those who work from home, where the environment is not always “ideal” for storing and filing prints. This is where adhesive, transparent job jackets become your ally; job jackets are your way to ensure your vital documents are stored safely.

 

It is not always just about keeping them safe, it is often about keeping them organized, which plays a crucial role in efficiency in the workplace. Companies focus on rapid access to important documents, not only digitally where we rely on a computer system, but physically where we count upon our storing/filing choices.

 

Job jackets are basically, large folders or transparent pockets containing all pertinent documents to a particular project. For instance, with an advertising project, the job jacket holds all the creative paperwork, quotes, copy decks and every other piece of information related to the job. This makes it easier to store and consult whenever needed. If there’s an ongoing construction project, a job jacket holds quotes, receipts, prints, business cards, etc. The sorting can be done per vendor, material, or stage.  When the project is done, they can be easily filed away for later consultation. Job jackets are 100% reusable, which makes them even more convenient; you may print different copies or documents yet only need one job jacket, which will do the job of protecting them.

 

Big Blue Print Hanger offers the best variety in job jackets; every product is made out of top-quality materials and is specifically designed to meet your expectations regarding document protection and organizing goals.

 

  • Side Open Vinyl Jackets. They come in three standard sizes: 10.5”x14.25”, 14.5”x15” and 16”x18”. The quality of the translucent material enables perfect, clear vision; the side opening is exceptionally convenient when storing documents that need to be handled constantly during the day as they slip smoothly. The perforations on the size, allow putting the Jacket effortlessly into binders, file folders or organizers. This item serves correctly to store and organize receipts, quotes, inventory counts, brochure, flyers, and any other promotional document.

  • Sticky Back Pockets. They come in two standard sizes: 13”x10.5” and 4”x6”. These job jackets add versatility and visually improve your files. Using self-adhesive material –which is permanent- they adhere to most surfaces such as binders, folders or presentation documents, but they also stick well to storage units such as plastic totes. They are perfect to handle business cards, photos and are the ideal solution for any other document/item prone to fall out, while also increasing the professional look.

Big Blueprint Hanger

  • Top Open Vinyl Storage Jackets. These come in four different sizes: 14”x10”, 14”x20” (double pocket), 17.5”x23.5” and 24”x30”. The side opening in this job jacket protects better the documents against dust, and it prevents the sheets from slipping when handling. They are ideal for archiving work orders, production schedules, marketing plans, among others. They are sturdy, reliable and offer 100% clear visibility. The perforations on the side make it easy to incorporate to a binder, folder or any other organizer.

 

The applications of job jackets are endless. They can be incorporated into teaching techniques –they work excellent with dry markers- and are easy to display and handle. They are also great when organizing mailing; they work fantastic holding stamps, sheets and even small metal dies. Clients often comment they have sought for something similar for quite an amount of time until they found Big BluePrint Hanger job jackets.

Paper is not going away any time soon, that is a proven fact. While we still work with physical copies containing our most sensitive information, it will be crucial to find efficient ways to protect and organize these documents. For better visuals, easy-to-access filing choices, job jackets by Big BluePrint Hanger are the best way to go.

 

NJ-based Blueprint Hanging Rack Storage Company Proud to Offer American-made, Eco-friendly Products for Engineers

NJ-based Blueprint Hanging Rack Storage Company Proud to Offer American-made, Eco-friendly Products for Engineers

by Priya

Big Blueprint Hanger uses American-made, eco-friendly products – because we care about our impact, and we want our customers to have the best products possible.

When you buy products such as the blueprint hanging rack from Big Blueprint Hanger, rest assured in the knowledge that the product was made in ways that impact the environment as little as possible. Additionally, there’s the fact that it was made completely in America – which is by and of itself a guarantee of good quality.

Why Shop American-Made Products?

  1. High Labor Standards

American products are better, firstly, because the American government enforces labor standards that are fair towards workers. A company manufacturing in America needs to follow the United States Labor Laws, which ensure, for instance, that minimum wage is paid. The government has no control over foreign labor standards, so a product made abroad may very well have been made by people working in sweatshop conditions.

This may not directly impact the finished product, but it impacts the whole system. It’s similar to, say, organic thread. The thread itself will be more-or-less the same, but the farming practices, labor wages, manufacturing process etc. will all be better in the case of organic thread. You may not feel the difference when you stitch with the thread, but the demand you create by buying the product will affect the lives of thousands.

  1. Job Opportunities

Another important reason is that products manufactured in America open up job opportunities in the country. When a manufacturing plant is set up, hundreds (if not thousands) of people find employment. American-made products help fight unemployment, and this help our economy grow. So, if a company provides products made in America, it’s effectively working towards a better life for Americans.

 

  1. Environmental & Safety Regulations

Products made overseas do not need to follow the environmental and safety regulations that American-made products do, the result being that American products are a lot safer health-wise. Products imported from other nations may adversely affect the health of American buyers, as they may have chemicals or adulterants in them that are considered dangerous to our health by the standards of the FDA (Food & Drug Administration) and the FTC (Federal Trade Commission).

 

  1. Economic Independence

Creating products nationally would increase our independence. At the moment, a large portion of our demand is met by foreign nations. We place tremendous importance on trade agreements in the hope that we’ll receive products at lower prices. If more products were made in the country, we could reduce – and ultimately end – our reliance on foreign countries and become perfectly independent.

 

  1. Durability & Quality

A good indicator of a product’s quality is how long it lasts. American products have dominated products from other countries in this respect, because the cost-per-use for American-made products is often lower than that of products made overseas. Investing in a quality blueprint hanging rack that lasts longer than an inexpensive one means you’ll ultimately get more utility out of the former.

 

The fact that American-made products are better isn’t limited to these arguments – it’s something the American public agrees with. Consumer Reports found in 2015 that 80% of American consumers prefer to buy American made products – with over 60% going on to say they’d be willing to pay 10% more for American-made items!

 

How are our products eco-friendly?

Now, another question we’ve been asked a lot is how our products are eco-friendly. People are aware that plastic is not eco-friendly, since it takes hundreds of years to decompose, and suffocates animals and pollutes rivers while it lies around. However, how can steel products be eco-friendly?

Metal impacts the environment in rather a different way than plastic does.

Minerals (which includes metals and non-metals) are naturally-occurring substances. They’re found in the Earth’s crust, and need to be mined, refined and shaped before they can be put to use. Steel isn’t a mineral itself, but an alloy – i.e., a combination of two or more different minerals.

The process of extracting and refining metals takes a lot of energy, which is usually in the form of electricity (or coal). As most people are aware, coal is one of the biggest causes of environmental pollution, as it releases massive amounts of greenhouse gases and other pollutants when burned. The process also requires large amounts of water – which are then turned into waste.

Now, the traditional way to make steel (and steel products) is by making the alloy from scratch and then making products such as our blueprint hanging rack from the ‘virgin’ (or previously unused) material. However, there’s a greener method of making steel products – by using recycled steel, which is the method our manufacturers use.

Recycled Steel

When using recycled steel, discarded steel (i.e., scrap metal) is melted down, and turned into fresh products. This bypasses the metal extraction, refining and alloy-making processes to a large extent, cutting down the energy usage by up to 67%.  Furthermore, if stainless steel were produced entirely from scrap, carbon dioxide emissions would be reduced by a solid 70%.

A ton of recycled steel saves 1.5 tons of iron, half a ton of coal, and 40% of the water used in the production process. And that’s not all!

A million tons of recycled steel will save enough energy to power over nine hundred thousand houses for a full year. For example, the Australian city of Victoria recycles “around 1 million tonnes of commercial metal per year” – so you can see that it isn’t a very large amount. The difference it makes, however, is tremendous.

Another point in the favor of metal recycling is that while metal ore is a finite resource (i.e., there aren’t endless deposits in nature), recycled metal is a potentially infinite resource, since most products will at some point be discarded or go defunct – and those can be melted and reused perpetually to create a perfectly balanced cycle. Steel is unlike other metals in the fact that it doesn’t lose its strength when it’s recycled.

 

Eco-friendly Paint

So, that’s how our products are eco-friendly. However, that’s not all – we go one step further. The paint we use on our blueprint hanging rack is also eco-friendly.

How can paint be eco-friendly?

Paint has a lot of chemicals and heavy metals in it – as do dyes and ink. If you’re a gardener, you may have heard the advice that colored newspaper pages shouldn’t be added to the compost pile. That’s because colored ink has heavy metals such as lead in it, which can hurt your plants and stunt their growth. So what can they do to you and the environment?

Heavy metals such as lead, zinc and cadmium are commonly found in paint. They can harm your garden and leach into groundwater (and your private well). When consumed, these metals accumulate in the body and can result in toxicity and damage to the liver, kidneys and intestines.

Paint also has volatile organic chemicals, or VOCs. You know that fresh paint smell, when you walk into a room that’s recently been painted? Some find it pleasant, others unbearable. The smell is in fact that of VOCs in the air, which can be injurious to your health, with both short and long-term effects.

From the website of the Environmental Protection Agency: “while people are using products containing organic chemicals, they can expose themselves and others to very high pollutant levels, and elevated concentrations can persist in the air long after the activity is completed.”

Some types of paint may also include fungicides and biocide to increase their shelf life. These are synthetic chemicals that can harm the environment – especially the soil near painted structures. The chemicals in the paint will slowly leach into the soil and affect plant growth. Edible plants should never be grown close to structures with synthetic paint on them.

When this paint accumulates in landfills, the large quantities of toxic substances have a massive impact and can seriously deteriorate the water quality in surrounding areas.

Our product line that includes the blueprint hanging rack is painted using eco-friendly paint. That’s paint made using natural substances such as clay, citrus, balsam, milk proteins and minerals that don’t hurt the environment.

From the website of our manufacturer: “For decades, Borroughs has been investing in green technology to protect air quality and reduce pollution in our region of operation.  Each year since 2002, our innovative paint-reclamation technology has prevented thousands of pounds of waste paint from amassing in a landfill by reformulating it into other colors—all VOC-free.”

 

At Big Blueprint Hanger, we’re aware of our customers’ needs just as much as those of the environment. We aim to create products that are more sustainable, and serve our customers better.

 

For a full list of our products such as the blueprint hanging rack and their features, visit our Products  page.

 

Classroom Organization Hacks: A Blueprint Storage Rack Is Your Best Friend

mobile blueprint storage rack plan centerClassroom Organization Hacks: A Blueprint Storage Rack Is Your Best Friend

 

At Big Blueprint hanger, we are proud to say that we’ve become pretty expert at helping architects, engineers, construction contractors, and designers of all walks get their blueprint organization under control. We are extreme specialists when it comes to oversized, high-density paperwork, and we’ve been showing off our unique, flexible, and inexpensive blueprint and art file storage systems for years.

Yet, we’ve always known our blueprint storage rack could be converted to house a wide variety of hanging print files and hanging art files, maps and film files, iron-on transfers, artwork and drafting storage.

Today, we’re actually turning the blog over to a client of ours. Trish is a kindergarten teacher who has been using our storage systems for a while now.  We received an email from Trish a few months back, letting us know how well the racks worked in her re-organized classroom. We asked her if she would take her letter of gratitude a step further by writing up a little something we could share on the blog for other teachers who might be looking for useful classroom organization tools.

Trish took it a step further, and shared with us this list of Classroom Organization Hacks for elementary school teachers & homeschoolers using our blueprint storage rack for a variety of her teaching tools and decorations.

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Hi Teachers! I’m Trish.  As a kindergarten teacher, I’m always on the lookout for storage ideas that make the best use of my tiny classroom.  Alright, so my classroom isn’t that tiny, but it sure starts to feel that way when it’s packed with 25 5-year olds, 12 months’ worth of rotating décor, art supplies, anchor charts, maps and books.

 

  1. Maps. I do a series of Montessori-style activities with maps to introduce students to geography. A big part of the lesson is learning that symbols represent real things. We do a lot of crafts that include making our own maps throughout the year, adding parts of the children’s neighborhood and our own school campus gradually.

 

This means that I need to store a lot of large maps to use as demonstration for the whole class to see how different maps look and the variety of symbols used. It also means that I have about 25 poster-sized craft projects that we need to store safely throughout the year until they are finished and go home with the children.

glide out blueprint storage rack

 

The glide-out storage rack was my school’s first investment from Big Blueprint Hanger. I knew it would be perfect for the mapwork because we can installed it inside an existing tabletop surface to let the kids gather around and explore the map of the day. Safely underneath are all of their homemade maps and our other demonstration maps.  We just pull them out when we need them and slide them back under the desktop when not in use.

 

  1. Anchor charts. I keep each of my anchor charts, along with the components that go along with them (like Velcro-backed labels that we change out) in an extra-jumbo plastic, zipper style bag. Then I clip the bags inside the blueprint storage rack alongside the maps.

 

 

  1. Posters & Décor. Just like with the anchor charts, all of my decorative and educational posters get clipped directly into the blueprint storage rack. For those with miscellaneous components, I contain everything in a plastic zip bag like the anchor charts.

 

  1. Poster-board and construction paper. For regular-sized construction paper, I actually store it on its end inside a plastic shoebox type bin.  This way, I don’t have to worry about it sliding around and falling off a stack. The edges won’t get crumpled or dirty either, and I can put the lid on the bin and stack it amidst other art supplies.  Lastly, by stacking them on end, I can see all of the colors at once and can grab the one I need without rifling through stacks of paper.

 

When it comes to poster-board and oversized construction paper, I used to clip similar colors together in skirt hangers and hang them in a coat closet until it was time to pull some out.  Once I started using the blueprint storage rack for the maps, though, I discovered that the poly hangers that go with the system actually are much slimmer than the hangers I was using.  So I’ve since installed a second rack and now, all my large poster papers are stored in the blueprint storage rack too.

 

(Note: I am considering the next investment in one of these mobile rack centers to transfer my construction paper to. This way, I would be able to roll the supplies directly to our craft table to pull from, rather than just pulling one or two sheets out of the storage rack at a time and walking them to the students back and forth.)

mobile blueprint storage rack idea

 

  1. Art projects waiting for completion or to go home. Our school policy is to send home artwork at the end of each quarter, which means I often have large, paper, art projects to store safely for a couple of months. These now share space in my 2nd blueprint storage rack.

 

  1. Craft supplies & Activity kits. For smaller sets of kits, such as math games with counting pieces or craft sticker sets, I use the standard one-gallon plastic zipper bags clipped with binder clips. The binder clips are then suspended from curtain rings to a towel bar I’ve installed under a shelf. The shower curtain rings allow my bags to swivel in a small space so that I can see which items are in the bags, rather than using the skirt hangers which only fit in sideways.

 

  1. Teacher daily notes and command center. I used to have a corkboard just for my own daily needs – sticky notes, to-do lists, graded homework to pass out, print-outs for that day’s use, etc. That is, until I discovered these sticky-back pockets from Big Blueprint Hanger while I was getting my blueprint storage rack. Now, I have a fabulous command center with a variety of sized pockets stuck to the wall behind my desk. I’m no longer worried about losing thumbtacks on the floor where a child could get pricked. I don’t lose sticky notes that get brushed off by a passing student.  Everything has its own pocket that I slip them into. And, since they’re clear, I can see exactly what’s inside as a reminder.  In fact, I’ve got a handful of these sticky-back pockets to make use of all the nooks and crannies of my classroom.

 

(Side Note: I’ve also heard about magnetic-back pockets that are similar and would be useful for whiteboard or file cabinets.)

 

 

More About Big Blueprint Hanger

A big thank you to Trish for her teacher tips!

If you’re considering a blueprint storage rack for your classroom, here is more information about our rack systems.

 

The Glide-Out Rack enables easy and convenient access to all your files, artwork, or job jackets. These heavy-duty racks, with drawer-like slide in/out action, can be mounted just about anywhere to save space and your back. No bending or stooping necessary!! They are designed to be side-mounted to the underside of work surfaces and are great for contractors.

Available in 18″ to 48″ widths. All units are custom-made to fit your needs. Simply furnish the inside dimensions of your cabinet and we will custom-make the rack to fit your needs. Shelving and cabinets shown are sold separately. Please call for pricing.

Optional adapter brackets to fit Glide-Out in four post file shelving are available.

Rack prices do not include print hangers or jackets. See our Poly Hangers, Metal Hangers, Heavy-Duty Tag jackets, and See-Thru Vinyl jackets pages for sizes & pricing. Other rack sizes are available. Call for details.

Rack capacity averages 3 poly hangers per inch and 2 aluminum hangers per inch including space for finger room.

 

1 Tier Blueprint file racks are an effective compact solution to your storage. With various sizes available, these blueprint file racks are ideal for storing all sorts of documents in a minimum amount of space. Experience increased capacity while using less space with our 36” and 48” wide racks!

Rack proportions averages 3 Poly Hangers per inch and 2 aluminum hangers per inch including space for finger room.

 

Our wall mounted blueprint file racks are an enticing solution to help organize files where floor space is limited. Using the Wal-Stor rack allows you to turn available wall space into print storage space. Include a second tier to double the storage capacity.

Standard Wal-Stor racks are 24″ wide. Beam levels adjust on 1 ½” centers therefore multiple-sized prints fit in conjunction on the same rack.

Rack capacity averages 2 aluminum hangers per inch and 3 Poly Hangers per inch including space for finger room.

 

 

All of our storage racks are made from recycled steel and are covered with an environmentally – friendly paint.

 

 

 

Home Office Organization Hacks Using An Architect/Engineer Blueprint Storage Rack

Home Office Organization Hacks Using An Architect/Engineer Blueprint Storage Rack

When you work from home, you’ve got to be organized and a little creative when it comes to putting together your workspace. After all, you need a place that helps you function at your very best, which means creating a space that provides comfort without too much distraction. Carving out a professional space within your home can certainly be tricky, especially if you have very little square footage leftover from your day-to-day family space needs.

Yet, more and more Americans are finding themselves doing just that. In fact, the number of work-from-home Americans has increased over 100% in the past 5 years.  Thanks to cloud-based business technology, as well as reliable virtual & telecommunication improvements, working remotely from home isn’t just for writers, artists, and childcare providers anymore.

In fact, some of the less traditional careers that have seen a significant growth in remote or part-time remote work include:

  • Freelance Architectural Designers
  • Mechanical Engineers
  • Construction Consultants
  • Furniture Designers
  • Advertising Artists & Copywriters

So, whether you work full-time from your home office or you have a secondary home office space for casual Fridays, here are some organization tips utilizing a few hacks from the industrial organization experts at Big Blueprint Hanger.

We’re also throwing in a few extra tips and suggestions for working efficiently, too.  Depending on your industry, these clever hacks should help with assembling an environment that presents a professional atmosphere within your home.

  1. Pick the Right Room

First things first, there is the question of which room is the new home of your office space. This decision alone can make a huge difference. You might already have a specific room in mind, but if not, here are a few elements to help you pick which one works best in your home.

It is always a good idea to choose a space within your home that is far enough from the “main action” of your house, especially if you have a family. This is important for decreasing opportunities for distraction. You might also try to pick a place that wasn’t previously a “relaxing place,” such as a bedroom. The reason behind this is that sometimes, this can affect your ability to work with a focused mindset, as your subconscious will recognize the room as a place of rest instead of as a place of work.

You also might want to consider a room that has doors that lead outside. This would be helpful if you have clients that might visit your home office. This way if you feel uncomfortable bringing them into the rest of your home, this is a convenient way to respectfully keep business in the office space. This is also is helpful if you feel like the rest of your home is messy or does not present a professional atmosphere.

Lastly, you should consider a room with windows. It is important to work in a space that is well-lit, and that has great airflow. This is important to your productivity, as a poorly lit room and weak air flow can lead to a claustrophobic atmosphere, as well as a place where you will not feel encouraged to get anything done.

 

 

  1. Desk & Draft Table Options

Your next consideration should be your desk space. Do you need a draft table in addition to a traditional desk? Will you have occasional meetings with clients and therefore need a desk with seating on both sides?

Keep in mind you’ll need to manage your space. Your desk should not be so big that it makes the room difficult to walk around in.  Draft tables like these from Big Blueprint Hanger are available in a wide range of sizing to fit your space. Their sturdy work surface is available in a flat top or a slanted top, enabling easy viewing of up to 36” x 48” size draft plans, blueprints, or schematics. Plus, they are easily dismantled and re-assembled if you need to reconfigure your home office later.

Once you choose your desk, you should place it in a spot that is well-lit within your office. You should also consider where you place it in accordance with the window. If you find that you are easily distracted, then having a desk that faces directly outside may not be a good option for you, as outside events may call for your attention when you should be focusing on your work.

Next, you need to consider the seating arrangement in your office. When it comes to your desk chair, a swivel chair tends to be the best, as well as the most convenient option. This way you can move with ease as you reach for whatever you need. These also have adjustable seatbacks and heights, so that you can move it to whatever feels the most comfortable and useful to you as you move from drafting to computing or writing.

  1. Use round file labels instead of traditional rectangular ones.

These round labels are fabulous for marking your files and folders.  Not only are they big and easy to read, but their round design makes quick referencing easy without snagging clothes.

  1. Use Adhesive Transparent Pockets

I love a DIY command center as much as the next homepreneur, and these adhesive-backed pockets are a game-changer. Rather than tacking stacks of orders and invoices on a messy corkboard, slip them into transparent pockets adhered right to your wall, the side of your desk, or filing cabinet.

Tired of sorting through a ton of USB drives to find the one for a particular job? Use a mini pocket to slip it into place neatly with the rest of the documents for the job.

Sticky back pockets add versatility – and that’s one of our biggest requirements in a great home office layout.   With visual access to your job tickets, digital files, and a place to leave easy-to-see notices all in one place, these handy pockets will change the way you handle your work.

 

  1. Use a Blueprint Storage Rack for Oversize Paper Drafts

Saving your precious home bandwidth by bringing home copies of your draft instead of wasting time trying to download the giant files? If your work deals with oversized paper drafts, designs, blueprints, maps, photos or plans, you’ll need a convenient storage system to keep them off the floor and out of harm’s (your children’s) way. There are actually a variety options if you consider using a blueprint storage rack to handle it all.

Consider a drop lift wall rack

Glide-out racks that offer additional surface space on top that would be perfect for your printer/fax/scanner hub.

A mobile plan center

A rolling stand rack (did we mention we love things to be mobile?)

Or Poly hangers that can be stored on a pegboard wall.

 

  1. Put Casters on EVERYTHING

The biggest suggestion for home office design is to keep everything mobile. Furniture that can be moved is incredibly valuable in a home office scenario, especially when space is limited. Adding heavy duty casters to your desk, filing cabinets, and bookshelves affords you the opportunity to reconfigure your space in a moment’s notice.

Need to make room for clients coming by? Shove the furniture against the wall to add space for seating.

Roll out your draft table front and center for a quick meeting with your team.

Slide your desk closer to the doorway to keep an eye on the kids when school’s out. Then push everything out of the way for a quick play session with them for a break!

Check out these heavy duty steel casters from Big Blueprint Storage.

 

Summary:

No two businesses are exactly the same, and using your home office space to reflect you and what your business promotes is an excellent way to maintain your professional mindset.  Keeping furniture mobile and your tools versatile and flexible will ensure you are always able to change up your layout if you find something isn’t working for you or you need to reconfigure for future growth. Thinking outside the box by using a blueprint storage rack for any of your oversized documents will keep your important documents safe and easy to sort.  And lastly, clear labeling and a great visual project center will ensure a smooth workflow.

 

 

 

 

How to organize your construction office

One of the most important aspects of any business is organization. In your construction business, one of the key elements you need to keep in mind is that the in-house operations are kept orderly. In the hustle and bustle that is a construction business, it easy for things to become disorganized, and even if some sort of system is established, without proper maintenance, things can fall apart after even just a few days of disregard. Papers get misplaced, tools are lost, employees have miscommunication issues: you get it. Not a pretty picture.

Here are a few ideas that will help you manage your construction business simply but efficiently. Once established, these organizational functions can be easily maintained so that mistakes and miscommunication are far less likely to occur. Throughout the process of re-organizing the inner and outer workings of your construction business, you will hopefully notice a change in your business’ self-presentation and standard of professionalism.

Tool Organization

One of the first rules of keeping your construction business’ tools organized is by sorting your tools by usage. Keep everything together that functions similarly. For example, keep wrenches together but separate from the screwdrivers, and keep screwdrivers together but separate from saw blades. This isn’t too hard to figure out, but often what can happen is the random assortment of small tools together and big tools together. When this method of big vs. small is used, things are more often misplaced as well as misused. Within the separation of tools by usage, there should also be a separation of tools by type. When you keep all of your screwdrivers and flatheads in the same place, it would be ideal to separate the flatheads from the screwdrivers. This way, the amount of each tool is consistently kept track of, and you will never have to dig through one type of tool in the search for another.

One thing you can use for such organization would include boxes or bins: they are GREAT for keeping things separated and in their proper place. Although there is sometimes a huge temptation to keep things in the box they come in, such as nails or screws, if they aren’t sorted into a larger bin with like-items and are kept loosely, it is far more likely for these individual packages to get lost or misplaced.

After all of your tools are sorted into bins of like-items, a good idea would be to establish a numbering system of all the tools in your company’s possession. First, you need to go through and take inventory of every tool you have, just so that you know the quantity of your tools, and how many individual types you have. After you have kept track of just how many of each tool you have, a numbering system can be put into place by numbering your tools from 1 to whatever the final amount is. For example, say you have 15 flatheads and 20 screwdrivers. By numbering each tool with a small sticker, you would put the numbers one through fifteen on each of your flatheads, and one through twenty on each of your screwdrivers.

You would then transfer that information onto an inventory sheet. You might use one page to keep track of screwdrivers and flatheads, especially if they are in the same bin, and then create a table to keep track of what numbered tool was taken out onto a construction site. The contractor using the tool would enter in on the track sheet exactly what date and time they used the tool, and the date and time the tool was returned to it’s proper bin. This would work to prevent any displacement of tools, as well as establish how often certain tools are used.

If you notice there is a tool that goes many months or even a year or two without usage, then you might want to investigate that tool further: is it damaged or broken? Do you have an updated version of that tool that makes the old tool redundant and take up space? Do you need this tool, or can it be used elsewhere?

Another benefit of the tool numbering system is that if a tool is misplaced, you will know exactly what you are looking for. By keeping close track of your tools both by type and quantity, as well as keeping a written record of tool usage, the time it takes to establish what has been lost or misplaced and tracing your steps back to that item will take significantly less time, and will possibly even cost you less if you are able to replace that item instead of having to purchase a replacement.

Paper Organization

Paperwork is the other main aspect of a construction business office that needs to be thoughtfully organized and maintained. With so many papers going through and living in an office, it wouldn’t take more than a day for a whole entire construction project to be thrown out of order if important paperwork is misplaced or lost.

Different types of papers should be kept and maintained in separate ways. Multiple filing cabinets with clearly labeled drawers and folders should be used for separate types of papers. Paper work should be separated first by type, then grouped together by what they are needed for.

Employee information regarding hire as well as their licenses and qualifications should be kept together in the same place, each employee with their own separate folder within the same drawer. These are best kept alphabetically.

Information regarding any and all of your subcontractors should be kept in a separate drawer, including information of your collaborative history with them, as well as a copy of the proof of payment from jobs that they have done with you before.

Billing and payment information regarding all of your employees and subcontractors should be kept in another drawer, also alphabetically organized by the name of your employees. Your subcontractors’ info should also be in the same drawer, but alphabetized separately from your employees. Timesheets and scheduling information should also be kept in this drawer so that you can keep track of the hours each employee worked, as well as whether or not they have gotten paid for those hours. Within each separate employee’s folder, paperwork should be organized by date, so that their latest working information is in the front, and their oldest information is in the back.

Invoices for different jobs should also be kept in the same drawer. This could be organized multiple ways, the top two being by the date of the project or by the name of the project or client. Date might be easiest, so that you can keep all of your current or most recent projects right up front, so they can be easily accessed without having to look back through folders of multiple names and older projects.

When it comes to storing your Blueprints, it might not be best to go with the typical roll-up and placement into some bin. This can cause damage to Blueprints, even if they are kept in a Blueprint tube.

The best and most organized method would be to store your blueprints in a Blueprint storage rack. A Blueprint storage rack will keep your papers neat and less-prone to damage, as well as keep them organized so that they are easy to find. When you roll up Blueprints and place them randomly on shelves in an office place, they are susceptible to multiple types of damages. It also hard to keep Blueprints orderly this way, and it wouldn’t be hard to lose track of one or to misplace it. Using a Blueprint storage rack keeps them all in one place in a presentable fashion that allows you to see the Blueprint you are working on without having to take it out of its placement.

Once you have a Blueprint storage rack, you can keep them organized by date or alphabetically. Again, organizing by date may be slightly more convenient as it will keep your most recent or current Blueprints up front and easily accessible.

When the innerworkings of a company are organized and functioning well, the whole business tends to follow in those same patterns. Keeping the different functions of your construction business organized to a basic yet detailed degree will allow more time for getting the job done without any extra hassle beyond the work itself. When you are working on a difficult project, or even multiple projects, you don’t have time to be disorganized. Any delays or miscommunications that result from disorganization are unprofessional, and businesses may find themselves in serious trouble if they are not trustworthy and reliable to do their job on time and in the right way.

Organizing your construction office in this way is basic but efficient, and the maintenance is even easier. Once the way things are kept and sorted is established, putting things where they belong and keeping track of what paper goes where becomes a regular habit, and a good one at that. Your company will prove to be even more professional and trustworthy as you develop a reputation of being able to work efficiently and on time in the most organized way possible.

How to de-clutter, starting with a Blueprint storage rack

When we all grew up and became adults, one thing did not change much from our childhood: in one way or another, almost all of us still have desks. Whether there’s one in your room at home, one in your college dorm, or one in your office job, we all spend at least some fraction of our adult lives at our desks. Some people have learned over the years and years of being responsible for desks since their grade school days that it is easiest to function with a clean and well-maintained desk.

Some people.

If you are not one of these people, you might find your desk life a little more hectic than you might like it to be. You might lose things easily, because it was there yesterday but its not there today… or was it the day before when you saw it last? You’re not sure. But it was important.

Messy desk life has also caused you to be easily distracted. Even though you are trying to glue your eyes the computer screen, that paper crumpled over there in the corner might be that the receipt you were looking for to return that shirt you bought last week… but underneath that is the picture you and your significant other took on your trip to Hawaii. You wish you were in Hawaii right now.

Stress also plays a major role in the life of a messy desk. Not finding things can cause you to fall behind easily, and the last thing you need is another lecture from your boss or professor about late work. You might also lose things on your desk not related to school or work, like a gift card or someone’s present. You can misplace money and checks, just like that!

Its also not pleasant when other people notice that you tend to keep an unorganized desk. If its peers at college, the biggest deal is that they might judge you, which is not too big a deal. But what is a big deal is when your boss, or boss’ boss, comes into your work and sees that you are not able to keep your area clean. They are supposed to trust you, as an employee, to keep your desk clean in a professional way to reflect the standards of the company. If you are falling behind, and your desk is messy, then it becomes evident that this job really is in no way near your list of priorities.

What you need to do is become one of those “clean desk” people. Which isn’t necessarily easy, by the way, as it is hard to break years and years of the development of a bad habit, but it can be done! Through the initial decluttering process, hopefully you will start to realize some of the effects right away. You will get rid of things you no longer need, add things that will help keep you more organized, and maybe even find that thing you were looking for a few months ago but never thought you’d see again!

Imagine walking to your desk, wherever it may be, and sitting down to look for something and finding it right away because you know exactly where it is. That isn’t meant to be trivial, as a lot of us know that the struggle is very real. Hopefully, if you use this guide the right way, you might see a major change in your desk life, that will hopefully cause a neat change in the rest of your life as well.

 

Paperwork and Blueprint storage systems

Any college student or employee who spends their time at a desk knows that the number one source for clutter is paper. We get so many things handed to us that we are supposed to keep track of, and we are supposed to print out papers to give back. The whole thing can seem like a total nightmare, especially when it comes to deadlines. Even if you know you completed something in time, if you can’t find it, might as well have not done it at all. Teachers don’t give good grades and bosses don’t pay for, “I promise I did it.”

One nifty way to keep your paperwork organized in your office or workspace is the use of a Blueprint storage system. A Blueprint storage system not only offers a neat and compact way to store your papers all in one place, but it also allows you to organize however your situation requires. For example, in a college setting, you might organize your assignments by class, and then by due date. In a business office setting, you can use a Blueprint storage system to organize your clients alphabetically, or your paperwork by due date.

It is important that know exactly how you organized it, because if you intend to stay organized, then you need to maintain the organizational pattern for every future intended use.

Get rid of things that don’t belong.

There are so many things that do not belong anywhere on your desk. You might forget that this includes gum and candy wrappers, or receipts and old post-it notes, simply because that is where they have lived for so long. This is not the case. Their new home (except maybe the receipts, those you might want to keep somewhere at home) is the garbage can.

Its easy to cast aside whatever on your desk, especially when it feels like you’ve got a lot going on, or you think you’ll remember to do it later. This is almost never the case. If you were to keep a trash can under your desk, then it would take half of a second longer to lean under your desk to toss trash where it belongs. Putting it in a random drawer does not count either.

Dishes also do not have a place on your desk. The one exception might be a coffee cup, and if this is the case, then you should keep one coaster on your desk as a reminder.it also gives your coffee cup a specific place to live, so that the coffee cup doesn’t have a chance to get lost either.

Keep your decorations to a minimum.

Too many picture frames and plants and Pokémon balls on your desk only add to the overall dysfunction. You brought these things to liven your desk life, but really, you can’t see them half of the time anyways underneath all the clutter.  Choosing one or two things might be acceptable, as long as they aren’t too much of a distraction from your work. If you want, consider changing the background on your computer or laptop to pictures of your family and close friends, instead of using the space of picture frames at your desk. You can also consider switching out your desk decorations every few weeks or so, if you are interested in changing things up a bit.

Sort the things you do use at your desk.

Desks tend to feature a variety of different tools, but when they are all over your desk of just in a pile inside of your drawer, it is hardly possible to use any of them. Take them all out of their messy hiding, and sort through them. You might find you have unnecessary multiples that you can take home or give away. Whatever you figure that you can use, you should organize into a drawer organizer or small bins inside your desk to keep all these things separate. This includes: pens/pencils/ highlighters, push pins and paperclips, staplers, hole punch/3-hole punch, whiteout, or other office materials. If you want to keep a small cup-holder for pencils and pens on your desk, then feel free to do so.

Keep your cords out of sight.

  The cords to your lamp, laptop, cell phone, or other should not be on display all over your desk. Recoil the length of chargers and cords that you don’t need, and make sure any cord lengths you do need are kept behind your desk near the outlet or run along the back of the top of your desk. This way, there is no chance to get anything tangled or mangled or mangles or swished to the side by any cords you may need.

Maintenance

Now your desk should be pretty well sorted… the only issue left is making sure it stays that way. One tip: keep your desk clean. Use all purpose cleaner and a rag or paper towel to wipe your desk down. This way, it becomes easier for you to want to keep it clean in that way. Also, if you must, you can make labels for where everything goes in and on your desk. This might seem excessive, but whatever helps, helps!

Once you start enforcing the habit of putting stuff where it belongs after every time you use it and remembering to throw your trash away in the bin instead of on the desk, it gets easier and easier. You’ll find yourself less stressed, and more able to focus on your work. It will be hard to return to a bad habit after feeling this good!

blueprint storage rack

Can a Blueprint Storage Rack Really Boost Your Job Enjoyment and Work Productivity?

 

 Can a Blueprint Storage Rack Really Boost Your Job Enjoyment and Work Productivity?

by Liz 

 

Considering the average person spends more time at work than anywhere else, you’d think that making your work environment as desirable as possible would be considered a priority. They say that ‘happiness starts at home,’ but new research in workplace contentment is presenting a different story altogether. As it turns out, happiness might start with the right layout and organizational tools for your workspace. That’s why we’re making the case that a state-of-the-art file storage and a fancy blueprint storage rack could lead to a happier work life.

 

Yes, seriously.

 

Here are 4 statistics about employee productivity that might surprise you:

 

  1. Companies with happy employees outperform the competition by 20%.*
  2. Happy employees are 12% more productive.*
  3. The annual cost of inefficiency for full-time employees looking for misplaced items in the office equals $89 billion.**
  4. Employees who are allowed to design and organize their own workspace are 32% more productive.***

 

The bottom line?  A personalized, organized office leads to happier employees, less money lost, and higher productivity!

 

“In a disorganized environment, the stresses of lost or hard-to-find items short-circuits our creativity. Organization creates a state of calm that allows solutions to problems to surface and opens the channels of creativity, “ say the Productivity Experts.

 

Let’s face it – your average architects, engineers, contractors, and construction team members typically love to pile paperwork.  Turning piles into files can be surprisingly liberating. The blueprint storage rack makes the organizational aspect of certain office spaces more manageable and therefore more tolerable for the average employee. Hanging your big blueprints in a blueprint storage rack makes viewing easier to digest when sieving through a mountain of paper work.

 

Meeting preparation is cut in half. Client consultations are smoother and more impressive. Need to refer back to a past design at the spur of the moment? No problem – you can put your hands on it in a flash.

 

Set the Tone For An Energetic & Efficient Work Culture

 

And we’re not just talking about converting your current packrats into productivity boosters. You can also expect to set the pace for new hires. Having office supplies such as the blueprint storage rack will create a comfortable routine for those employees initially starting their career in your office. Sometimes it can be those little daily tasks that can make or break you on a bad day. As the office manager, you’ll be responsible for so many elements in the working day – set your staff up in a state-of-the-art, superbly organized and stylish work space, and you’ll see that the rest of your work culture will unfold naturally.

 

With so much going on regarding employee happiness and productivity, make sure you keep the organization on top of its game.

 

Attract New Hires That are Enthusiastic to Join Your Team

 

Is your firm growing? Just starting out? Preparing to replace a few pending pensioners?  You’ve got some big shoes for a new hire to fill. But, put yourself in their shoes for a moment. Finding a job fresh out of school is getting more and more uncertain. It’s a slogging process for the young hopeful. Finding your lifetime career fit at a company you want to stay with, work your way up in, and retire successfully – well that is the holy grail!

 

So picture this: a young architect is touring your firm during the interview process. He’s nervous and excited. He enters a waiting room that looks like it came straight out of an interior design magazine. Walking to his interview, he passes bustling conference rooms, a fully-stocked breakroom with one of those fabulous state-of-the-art espresso machines, and the most impressively-big, industrial blueprint storage rack, gleaming with crisp sheets full of new design ideas. For a fleeting moment, he imagines his name at the top of one of those blueprints.  He starts to get nervous that his portfolio isn’t good enough, his suit isn’t expensive enough, and his college clunker of a car is an embarrassment in the parking lot.  This is a guy who is eager to make the right impression to join your obviously-prestigious firm.  This is a guy who is going to step up his game to compete. This is a guy who is going to take pride in working here and will go the extra mile to make sure he is not the weak cog in this well-oiled machine!

 

Now, let’s consider a different scenario. The same young architect shows up to a waiting room where the secretary can’t find the sticky note she jotted his appointment on.  He sees a breakroom with a dripping water tank and a fast food style coffee maker covered in burnt coffee residue and a man slumped in the corner on his phone playing one of those time-wasting candy games. The conference room is really just the boss’ office with a folding table that’s piled with coffee-stained, wrinkled blueprints rolled up and spilling onto the floor.  A middle-aged man and a young woman are bearing the load of a missed deadline.

 

The young applicant is no longer worried about whether he’s good enough to fit in. He’s worried that this office will suck the life out of him before he hits 35. He’s already contemplating his mid-life crisis.

 

Ok let’s be honest. Am I saying that a perfectly-indexed mobile plan center, a platinum pegboard vertical tool organizer, and a glide-out, vertical blueprint storage rack are the keys to a successful, long-term career?  No. But I AM suggesting that these little organizational tools can be the subtle difference between an enthusiastic team member and one who easily finds distractions on his phone to get through the day.

 

If you’re a company that works with employees or contractors that store any of the following:

  • Blueprints
  • Contractor charts
  • Oversized newspapers and periodicals
  • Wallpaper samples
  • Poster samples
  • Maps
  • Film Files
  • Iron-on Transfers
  • Artwork

 

…and your company seeks to:

 

  •  Attract the highest caliber employment applicants
  •  Set the tone for a great work culture right from hire date
  •  Have a reputation for being organized, efficient, and meeting deadlines
  •  Boost team morale with a touch of atmospheric relief

 

…then bravo!    You’ve come to the right place. We’re directing you to the right place to start your office transformation.

 

The Big Blueprint Hanger is home to the most unique, versatile, and affordable high-density blueprint and art file storage systems available.   Get some inspiration for how our storage systems could work in your office at our blueprint storage planning guide. 

 

Don’t forget – their products aren’t limited to blueprints.  These vertical filing tools can be cleverly hacked for children’s art  in your home playroom, motivational posters and classroom décor for the schoolteacher, and maps for the savvy collector.

 

How to Jumpstart Your Office Transformation

 

Starting a new company is one thing – you’ve got a blank canvas to brainstorm a brilliantly organized, elegant workspace.

 

But what if you’ve been drowning in a cluttered company culture for decades?  How can you jumpstart an office transformation that will inspire real change in your office lifestyle and outlast the next Instagram trend?

 

  1. Bring your team in on the idea and let them help plan it. Your office is full of creatives, engineers, designers, and planners.   This is literally what they work for every day. Let them be a part of the plan. Not only will it give them a little break from their regular work day, it will also give you better insight into what they want and need around the office to boost their productivity.
  2. Have a little fun with an incentivized office redesign challenge!
  3. Give everyone a bit of freedom to incorporate more personal touches around the office. More so than simply a framed family photograph and a plant that always seems to be dying, let your team have a small budget for some personal organizational tools for their desk or office.
  4. Start From the Top Down – With Your Own Office Redesign

 

Perhaps you should start by printing these four statistical reminders to hang in your own office:

 

  •  Companies with happy employees outperform the competition by 20%.*
  •  Happy employees are 12% more productive.*
  •  The annual cost of inefficiency for full-time employees looking for misplaced items in the office equals $89 billion.**
  • Employees who are allowed to design and organize their own workspace are 32% more productive.***

 

 

Hopefully you realize now just how big of a return you’ll get on investing in office organizational tools and design.  Your return will come back to you in the form of enthusiastic employees, new hires that are eager to impress, overall productivity boosts, and less time and money wasted when trying to meet deadlines in a chaotic work environment.

 

Take a look at all of the storage solutions that Big Blueprint Hanger has to offer – we think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the new age of sleek, contemporary storage options for typically bulky and hard to manage paperwork.

 

You can also find out more of our in-depth tricks for boosting productivity here. 

 

 

 

 

*Statistics from Forbes.com

**From the Productivity Experts

***Statistic from University of Exeter

 

 

 

Professionalism in the Workplace: Why It’s Important, and How to Achieve It.

Professionalism in the work place is a vital part of becoming a successful business. This seems like fairly obvious and simple concept, but if this was the case, and every company took professionalism to heart, there would be a lot more satisfied clients and customers out in the world. But Yelp reviews and other review sites reveal otherwise. Yes, there are many great reviews of businesses and their professional atmospheres, but there seem to be a equal or greater amount of negative reviews as well, and the businesses with continuous negative feedback tend to not survive.

Professionalism is of key importance to any business, and whether or not you are just starting up or you have been in the business cycle for some time, it is continuously significant that you remember that the atmosphere and attitude of a company should convey trust, which is another vital part of becoming a successful business. Clients need to be able to trust that you know what you are doing, that you will do a good job, and that you respect the people you intend to serve as well as the task they have set before you. Now these things may be true, even though your environment may not be up to the exact standard it should be. Even though you may be good at your job, and your business is put together well enough, without that key factor of a professional environment, these things might not even matter, because new clients won’t be able to look past your incompetent exterior. Which is a shame! If your business has the ability to be trustworthy, strong, and successful, but is unable to prove it is so because no one wants your business based on the inefficient presentation, then it really is a bummer that the one thing holding your company back was the lack of professionalism, which can be easier to convey than you might think.

To get your business up to the standard of what competence looks like, read through these three aspects that you may or may not have considered before. If you have heard of them before or have already consider taking these tools with you to the work place, read through them again to really get it in your mind what you can do to boost the professional atmosphere of your office.

 

For your consideration: Organization

Now this should be a given, but some offices underestimate the power of organization. They might run under the term, “Organized Chaos,” but in the world of truly competent professionals, that is not going to cut it. Even if you think you know where an important file or blueprint is, if you can’t guarantee it’s in a safe location where nothing can happen to it outside of your knowledge, then this automatically wilts the trust that you are supposed to be growing between you and your customers. Organization leads to success both inside and outside of the workplace environment.

Professionalism is conveyed through the indoor location of an office by organization as it has tremendous benefits for the employees of the said office. Efficiency helps a team work more efficiently, and by having a set plan for the locations of papers, files, drawings, or blueprints around the office place is bound to prevent any confusion between coworkers in regards to how the office is managed and where they can find any needed materials.

The organization of the indoor workings of an office also shows professionalism to clients visiting your office for meetings or updates. Say a client stops by unexpectedly and wants to know how the blueprint for their new home is going. If you have to scramble to locate the requested blueprint because you don’t keep them organized with a blueprint storage system, or worse, you are unable to locate it, then not only does that convey to your client that you do not prioritize them or their business, but it also shows the severe lack of professionalism that they should expect from your company.

In contrast, however, say the customer stops by with an unexpected request to view the status of their blueprint, and you happen to keep your blueprints neatly presented and organized with a blueprint storage system, then you can connect your client with the blueprint in no time at all, and not only will they be impressed with your ability to keep your business organized and accessible, but you will also relay the knowledge that they are valued by you, and that they can trust you with their business.

Organization can also help you when you are out on the job, or out of the office, meeting with a client. Knowing exactly where your papers or blueprints are means not scavenging for them last minute, and not leaving anything of importance behind because you knew exactly what you needed and where it could be located. It also means showing up to a meeting prepared and on time because you were able to find everything you were requested to bring with plenty of time to spare. This, again, helps to build that trust with your client as it lets them know that their time is valuable to you.

A few items that might help maintain the office’s professional atmosphere in an organized matter include blueprint storage racks, or blueprint hanging racks, that work to keep every blueprint on file neatly protected from dents or wrinkles, as well as easily accessible by members of your work place. Job jackets can also be used on a more small-scale level to preserve paperwork that may need to be continuously reviewed during a job. Other items might include a filing cabinet for important files your business is bound to encounter, and an organized bin to keep work materials such as paper and pencils available when they are needed

Work Place Appearance

Extending beyond the valued appearance and use of organization in your office, the appearance of the office is a clue to your professional status. Appearance extends to not only the use of the work space itself, but also to the employees and managers representing your business. Office clutter as well as employees that follow no evident dress code appear untrustworthy. How can you manage a client’s business if you are unable to even keep up the presentation of your own?

When it comes to the look of the team within a work place, it is important to not under dress, or to over dress for that matter. How an employee is dressed communicates effort to a client. If an employee spends at least a little time on their appearance before they show up to the work place, then it shows your clients the dedication an employee has to their job, and that they are coming to the office with a mindset of professionalism.

Dressing appropriately for the work place should never only extend to the employees of an office space, but also to the employers. If bosses come to work dressed carelessly, then the example is set for the rest of the office. Be mindful, as you should expect professional attire by presenting the expectation yourself.

Lastly, the office itself should reveal that it is a professional work place through its appearance, and one of the first things to pay attention to is whether or not your office has clutter. Always make sure your office is supplied with enough trash cans to prevent a disarray of garbage invading your team’s space. Make sure the office is cleaned regularly, whether you are doing it yourself or hiring a cleaning crew. This is a healthy habit for your office, and it also shows how much you value your work and the business of your clients.

Office appearance also extends to decoration: there is such a thing as way too much. Make sure that your office is not off-putting with clashing colors and an over abundance of photos or posters, as this not only reflects your taste (or lack thereof) to your customers, but it also presents an unwanted distraction from the important matters at hand. It is also important to avoid being too bland. Again, this is a representation of your taste, and you should make your office a relatively enjoyable environment to visit.

Time Management

Time management is another key to revealing the professional status of a work place. This goes beyond timeliness as it pertains to being early or late for work. It looks more into what you and you employees do with the time you have in and out of the office while you are on a job. Time is money, and wasted time not only costs you, the employer, but also might cost you a few clients if they feel you are not a good manager of their time while they are in business with your company.

One idea for this might be to have your employees, for a period of time, keep track of the way they spend time on a time log. You might be also subject yourself to this practice, as you might waste time of sorts and not even realize. When the period of time is over, collect each employees’ recordings of their work week to see where time is being wasted in some places, or where time should be spent more often in others. This will help you manage the time your office uses to not only remain efficient within the workplace, but also to show your clients exactly how valuable you find their time to be.

Hopefully, these tips have helped you to circle around some ideas on how you can make your workplace a professional one, and beyond that, a successful one. If your company should be successful based on your skill and your purpose, then the best way to show that to the world is through the professional dispositions of you and your office.