The benefits of hebs Group’s modular building fit-outs

Back at the start of 2019 we tipped modular construction as one of the modern methods of construction (MMC) we believed would gain traction over the course of the year.

Nearly two years later, hebs Group supply modular buildings and containers with bespoke fit-outs that deliver many benefits to our clients.

Modular building has been an area of focus for the UK government since at least 2017, when the Housing White Paper identified it as an “exciting and effective area” for British companies to take a global leadership role.

And as we move through the new decade, the benefits of modular building remain persuasive as an MMC for the 2020s and beyond.

Why choose modular construction?

Modular construction involves manufacturing and building individual rooms or multi-room modules off-site, and then delivering them to their permanent position.

This can speed up construction significantly, allowing many modules to be manufactured at once, including all the floors of a multi-storey building such as apartments, office blocks and hotels.

Rooms within each module can be fully fitted out and decorated – even down to the carpets and curtains – so once they are dropped into place, there is the bare minimum of work left to do.

Where is modular construction used?

Modular building methods are used across the full range of properties, from residential to commercial, and from the hospitality sector to offices and mixed-use developments.

Because the benefits are built into the very fabric of the building itself, any large development stands to gain from a modular approach – this is not a sector-specific method of construction by any means.

Modules can create self-contained living spaces complete with en-suite facilities for hotels, student accommodation and other residential blocks, or working spaces such as private offices and meeting rooms.

Find out more

Whether you are in the initial planning stage or you have a clear idea and are ready to proceed with the building phase, hebs Group are here to provide essential consultancy and construction services for modular premises and across the full range of traditional techniques too.

By nature, modular building lends itself to larger construction projects, and no job is too big for hebs Group – we have the experience and expertise, as well as the equipment, to deliver modular premises at scale, fully fitted out and ready to occupy.

To find out more about modular construction and how hebs Group can help you with the construction and fit-out of modular buildings, contact us today on 0151 2360707.

 

Black Friday: retail maintenance guide

Black Friday marks the start of the busiest time of year for retailers, and although 2020 has been uniquely challenging for the sector, we’ve put together a Black Friday retail maintenance guide to help you get your premises ready for the November-December rush.

With the UK emerging from a second national lockdown on December 2nd and different regions facing different restrictions thereafter, it’s important to understand what you can and cannot do, and to be ready to trade on any days when you are allowed to open.

The continued precautions taken over the course of 2020 to prevent the spread of COVID-19 mean many households have yet to start their Christmas shopping. While some will do so online, we are still likely to see socially distanced crowds on high streets and retail parks in December.

Entrances and Exits

People need to be able to come and go from your premises safely, so give some attention to your entrances and exits, especially if you haven’t already done so in 2020.

It’s a good idea, if possible, to have one door for entering and a different door for exiting, without people having to cross each other’s path – so remember to put the exit adjacent to your tills and checkout lanes.

You might also want to establish a designated queueing area outside your shop, either using physical barriers or markers on the ground, in readiness for any particularly busy days.

Flexible Fitout

It’s good to incorporate some flexibility into your retail fitout, with modular shelving and display units that are easy to reconfigure, so you can adapt to any changes to social distancing.

As an example, the initial two-metre rule was quite quickly lowered to just one metre in shops, where customers who are able to wear a face covering should do so.

Shelves and units that can easily move around to create more or less space will not only benefit you during these current Coronavirus times, but also in future years so you can show off your products in the best light on Black Friday and in the run-up to Christmas.

Reliable Roofs

Finally, Black Friday also signals the start of the worst weather of the year as we move through autumn and into winter – so get retail roofs checked for any signs of leaks or damage.

A minor repair can protect against all kinds of risks, from a collapsed ceiling to water damaged products, and it’s important for the safety of your staff and customers too.

 

If the events of this year have forced you to delay your usual planned maintenance or building fabric checks, contact hebs Group immediately on 0151 2360707 and we can schedule an inspection as soon as possible.

Improving facilities management and workplace safety with thermal technology

Thermal imaging technology has come to the fore in 2020 as a means to rapidly test individuals for elevated body temperature before allowing them to enter a public space, ranging from restaurants and theme parks in the UK, to political rallies in the USA.

But thermal technology is not new, and it has plenty of other roles to play in enhancing workplace safety and improving facilities management, even during times when there is not a pandemic illness that has fever as a defining symptom.

As we move beyond 2020, thermal technology will continue to provide benefits for those organisations who invest in it – in this article we’ll look at how thermal imaging can help you too.

Why use thermal imaging for security?

First of all, thermal imaging offers a useful alternative to conventional video surveillance at any time of day or night, in varying light levels and other environmental challenges. Thermal cameras can ‘see through’ some obstacles, making it more difficult for intruders to hide.

Thermal cameras offer high contrast, and by design are a method to detect warm-blooded human trespassers against a cold inanimate backdrop. They can be coupled with other technologies, such as motion sensors, to further enhance this capability.

Why use thermal technology for safety?

Just as thermal cameras can spot human intruders, they also offer advantages for protecting the safety of authorised individuals. Again, by detecting body heat, they naturally highlight the presence of people in potentially hazardous or unauthorised areas.

If the operator needs to be able to identify individuals remotely, a visual camera can also be installed, along with such floodlighting as may be necessary to light the area at night for visual identification. By combining the different methods, you can ensure comprehensive coverage for all purposes of safety and security, no matter what time of day it is.

Ask us about thermal technology for safety and FM

If you would like to know more about how thermal technology can enhance your site safety and facilities management, contact hebs Group today by calling 0151 2360707 and we can discuss the different options, from thermal field surveillance to high-contrast close-up thermal cameras.

At present, many enquiries relate to COVID-19 and detecting fever in individuals; however, as we move into 2021, we expect to see more general interest in thermal imaging as a useful technology for the long-term future.

Whatever the driving force behind your interest, we can make sure to put in place a thermal technology solution that will serve your needs in the immediate future, while also offering substantial benefits in the years ahead.

Responsive architecture: The future of building design

An increasing amount of automation is common in modern building design – a simple example of this is the use of smart electricity meters in homes and other premises, to adjust power usage in response to the time of day or demand on the energy grid.

Responsive architecture takes this kind of automation a step further, allowing buildings to automatically reconfigure – even change their shape – as the surrounding environmental conditions change.

The reasons for this can vary, from environmental responses, to those driven by societal needs. Ironically, in some cases change is necessary in order to keep the building’s interior as constant as possible, for example when the interior temperature must be very steady.

How does responsive architecture work?

Responsive architecture can use any kind of technology to adapt the building in response to an environmental or other external stimulus.

One example might use motors to automatically open the windows when an increase in interior temperature is detected, or to automatically reposition solar panels in response to the changing position of the sun throughout the day.

In general, the aim is efficiency. Better, more natural lighting, heating, cooling, and ventilation; better generation of renewable energy; better use of other resources across a building or an entire estate.

Where do furniture, fixtures and fittings fit in?

The fitout of responsive architecture can have a direct impact on occupier comfort and on the operability of the architecture itself.

Office furniture has evolved substantially even in recent history, with much greater use of standing desks and reconfigurable workstations, to allow employees to adopt a position they find most comfortable and avoid repetitive working conditions.

The Internet of Things has seen many more devices become network-enabled, allowing entire buildings’ lighting and heating to be automated and/or adjusted remotely, as well as responding immediately to sensors like motion detectors and thermostats.

Some of these technologies are familiar, while others are relatively new, but again they all combine with a common goal: to improve efficiency, conserve resources and enhance comfort.

Find out more about responsive architecture

If you would like to incorporate responsive architecture into the fit-out of your offices or other commercial building, hebs Group can help.

Contact us today on 0151 2360707 to ask about intelligent building controls, smart sensors and remotely adjustable devices including HVAC systems.

We can guide you through the entire process, working out exactly what to install – from sensors and systems, through to controls and networking equipment – to give you truly 21st century premises that run efficiently and offer maximum comfort at all times.