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Chameleon

Office lighting for wellness and productivity

By Chameleon, Office Design, Office Interiors

Everyone knows how lighting can impact their mood. Many employees often choose to get out the office and into the sun during the summer months because of how it makes them feel much more uplifted. It is important to provide good office lighting not only to improve the well being of your employees but to also enhance their productivity.

Whether you opt for artificial, natural, bright, dim, cold or warm office lighting, the choice of lighting you choose will impact the mood, physical health, productivity and creativity of your employees. It is important to get the right balance as office lighting that is too bright can be harsh on your eyes, alter your sleeping pattern and trigger headaches and lighting that is too dim can strain your eyes and make you tired. Your brain shouldn’t have to be working overtime to compensate for inadequate lighting.

Check out our previous projects here to see how we use lighting.

What are my office lighting options?

Fluorescent V LED

When choosing the best office lighting for your employees deciding between fluorescent and LED is often the first place to start. While fluorescent options are typically cheaper than their LED counterparts, they are known to trigger headache and migraine symptoms among staff. Fluorescent lighting can also affect sleep patterns as it is known to hinder the production of melatonin. Alternatively, LED lighting is often seen as the more preferable option, despite being more expensive as they are energy efficient and can be dimmed to match the daylight outside which is better for both employees well being and productivity.

Natural Lighting

Its widely known that exposure to natural light reduces the likelihood of eye strain, headaches and blurred vision while working. Natural lighting also helps with other elements of health and wellbeing such as regulating hormones, supporting a healthy sleeping pattern and working productively on tasks.

Incorporating windows into office design significantly benefits the workforce. If you don’t have many windows, perhaps consider the addition of skylights to your building as a way to add natural light.

Colour and Temperature

Choosing between warm lighting and cool lighting can be a difficult decision but should be based on the task at hand. Typically, warmer lighting in shades of yellow or orange is better for relaxing where as cool lighting in shades of white or blue are good for waking up, concentrating or working in general. If possible, it is advisable that during the morning, the lighting is best to be of cooler shades and warms up through the day supporting employees to wind down easier at the end of the day.

Brightness

Ensuring that your office space has the correct brightness for your employees is essential. Non-working areas such as communal spaces and the kitchen  make sense to have lots of natural light as employees aren’t looking at screens or concentrating on tasks. In areas where employees spend a lot of time at screens, supporting them by taking away more of the natural lighting which overwhelms the screen and replacing it with lighting that can be controlled more easily is a better option.

 

Making the correct lighting choice for your employees is vital in order to look after their wellbeing and support both productivity and creativity in the workplace to get the most from your employees.

Cherry Tree Court

Work begins at Hull’s 35,000 sq ft Cherry Tree Court

By Chameleon

Work has begun to transform prominent Hull building, Cherry Tree Court, into a co-working space and business lets. The significant investment in the refurbishment of Cherry Tree Court, which is situated next to Double Tree Hilton, is being led by asset managers FI Real Estate Management (FIREM).

The first stage of the refurbishment, undertaken by Chameleon Business Interiors, will see the fit-out of a new, high-spec city centre co-working space ‘FigFlex Offices’ alongside a 6,000 sq ft office let.

Harriet Wagstaff, head of sales at Chameleon said: “This is a great project for the city and it is great to see more inward investment coming into the city. FIREM is known for developing and managing mixed-use spaces that nurture businesses. It’s a pleasure to be working with the team at FIREM and Garness Jones on such a prominent Hull building.

“Following on from recent investment in the Hull Truck Theatre and Double Tree Hilton, it is great to see some grade A office space being introduced to the area to increase footfall at this side of the city. Cherry Tree Court offers a number of attractive office accommodation options over across three floors – and the co-working space is perfect for those looking for a flexible city centre address. We look forward to seeing which businesses choose to make their homes there.”

A spokesperson for FIREM said: “We’re really excited about what lies ahead for Cherry Tree Court. It sits in a fantastic location, right in the heart of Hull city centre, with virtually every amenity you’d need within walking distance.

“This makes it the ideal place for businesses of all sizes to set up and embrace the progressive working environments made possible by FI Real Estate Management and the help of the team at Chameleon.

“FigFlex is FIREM’s dedicated serviced office provider and Hull will become the first FigFlex location north of Coventry when it officially opens this Autumn, demonstrating our confidence in Hull and its bright future.”

 Phase one of the work is due for completion later this month.

 

attract and retain the top talent

Attract and retain the top talent

By Chameleon

Flexible working is becoming a major consideration for professionals seeking a new role post pandemic, you will need to provide it in order to attract and retain top talent…

New research has shown that more than half of UK professionals consider flexibility of hours or location to be more significant when seeking a new role than it was before the pandemic, whilst 38% thought that workplace culture would play a greater role!

While the majority (68%) said flexibility about work location had improved during the pandemic, and more than half (57%) said flexibility of hours had got better, attitudes towards workplace culture were less positive – only a third of respondents said the quality of their company’s culture had improved in the pandemic, with 20% saying it had declined.

Workspaces now have to adapt to suit the changing needs of their users, including introducing technology to make flexible working more accessible for everyone in order to attract and retain the top talent. Employees want a variety of facilities to choose from in order to complete their tasks efficiently, effectively and productively. For example, as well as traditional desking, collaboration areas, bookable meeting rooms, informal social areas, breakout rooms and phone booths are all important facilities to provide.

Find out more about how we can transform your workspace into a flexible hub that encourages collaboration and inspires team culture here!

Victory Leisure Homes

Chameleon creates contemporary experience centre for Victory Leisure Homes

By Chameleon, Office Design, Office Interiors

Victory Leisure Homes have been creating luxury leisure homes and lodges for over a decade and in the summer of 2020 they enlisted us to bring their customer experience centre vision to life at their head office in East Yorkshire.

The once empty and under-utilised reception area has now been transformed into a 140m2 showroom. The bright and modern space includes: a welcoming meet and greet area, a refreshments corner and an L-shaped seating zone, where customers can look through samples and discuss design options. There are also two meeting rooms included in the design.

Fiona, our interior designer said: “Victory wanted an experience centre that would be welcoming for customers but would also work for more corporate, formal meetings. Together, we developed a space that perfectly balances an aesthetically pleasing, relaxing customer area alongside practical, ergonomic meeting spaces.

“It’s a fantastic project and we’re really proud to have been a part of this impressive transformation.

“We developed a tonal colour palette, which has created a very relaxed feel to the experience centre. There’s lots of wood, planting and neutral accents that all naturally complement one another and create a really contemporary finish.

“The meeting rooms’ foldable walls mean that these rooms are very flexible. Victory wanted the option to transform the meeting spaces into VR rooms, so the ability to reconfigure the design via the foldable walls is a great addition.

“We designed a handleless storage unit, incorporating wooden slats to the front of the design, creating interest whilst incorporating the natural design elements Victory requested. The piece large enough to hold a variety of samples without being too bulky. It’s sleek and smart and ties all of the natural elements together perfectly.”

Gary Corlyon, MD of Victory said: “Our new customer experience centre is exactly what we were looking for. It’s light, bright and modern, giving customers a taste of what they can expect from one of our models. We’re extremely proud of the space and truly believe that it sets us apart.”

See more of this project here – Victory Leisure Homes

Ideagen

Spotlight on: Ideagen

By Chameleon, Office Design, Office Interiors

In the summer of 2020 we completed the design, fit-out and refurbishment for Ideagen and their new £2 million head office located in Nottingham, creating a modern, industrial feel in the 30,000 sq ft space.

Kevin, our head of design said: “We wanted to create a space that not only had a contemporary finish but also focused on wellness. Our designs incorporated biophilic elements to bring the outside in, providing a variety of areas for the team to relax and refresh.

“The office is split over two floors and includes a variety of workspace settings including collaborative and agile spaces On the ground floor, we have designed Ideagen its very own coffee shop – inspired by the independent group of coffee shops: 200 Degrees – that provides employees with free breakfast and unlimited coffee every day. The space aims to transport you from the office environment to a high street coffee shop allowing employees to take a break and socialise with colleagues.

“It is truly a workspace designed for the future.”

The project has been so successful, it has been nominated for the Mixology North21 Project of the Year: Workspace Interiors 30,000-70,000 2q ft Awards and shortlisted as a finalist for the award!

You can check out more of this project here.

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functional workspace

From redundant factory space to fun and functional workspace

By Chameleon

Work has now completed at Groupe Atlantic’s new office space at its Ideal Heating premises on National Avenue in Hull creating a fun and functional workspace.

Our team provided the design, fit-out and furniture services, transforming a storage space of the factory into a fun, flexible and inspiring work environment for their operations team. Here’s what our interior designer, Fiona had to say:

“I am so pleased with the result of this project! We chose a range of light colours and materials to keep it looking as bright and vibrant as possible. By adding the mezzanine floor we have given the team some much needed space for meeting and training, whilst also providing the perfect view into the factory where they manufacture over 3,000 boilers per day.

“It was really important for us to work closely with the team at Groupe Atlantic to understand what was missing from their current space. We incorporated two modern kitchen facilities into the design that also double up as a socialisation and break out area for their team.

“Originally they were working in separate spaces that had become crowded overtime. We are so pleased we have been able to provide them with a space that will bring the team back together again, especially after many of them have been working remotely for a number of months.”

Kris Spivey, industrial engineer at Groupe Atlantic added: “Chameleon has created a space that will really bring our teams together again. Chameleon paid careful attention to our brief, delivering a space that not only looks fantastic but gives our team everything they asked for. We couldn’t be happier with the way the space has turned out and how their team managed the restrictions imposed by working so closely to our manufacturing line. We can’t wait to get the team back in to enjoy it!”

You can check out the completed project here: Ideal Heating

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JR Rix & Sons

Chameleon appointed to deliver JR Rix & Sons new HQ

By Chameleon, News

We are delighted to announce that JR Rix & Sons have appointed us to deliver a collaborative, inspiring new workspace for their team in their new head office at 2 Humber Quays!

The space will be designed with people at its heart placing emphasis on the wellbeing of Rix’s team. Group collaboration spaces, open plan café and bar areas as well as a work-out lounge are just some of the design features being incorporated into this space following feedback from the workspace analysis we carried out. The finished result will be a vibrant and modern office space that not only complements the building and its surroundings but also reflects Rix’s values of trust, safety, ambition and continuity.

“Having already worked with the Rix Group to deliver its new customer experience centre for Victory Leisure Homes, it is great to be working with the team once again,” said Harriet our BDM for the reigon.

Our chair, Shaun added: “It is fantastic that such a well-established Hull business has made the decision to support local businesses by appointing us to carry out the refurbishment of its new headquarters.

“We’re really excited to be creating a space to bring Rix’s people together again after such a long period of remote working, with the team looking to move into the new space in early summer.

“We are absolutely delighted not only to be part of Rix’s next chapter, but also to have the group as our new landlord at 2 Humber Quays – where we have been based for the past 12 years.”

Rory Clarke, MD of JR Rix & Sons said: “Having worked with Chameleon to design and build the customer experience centre for our holiday home business Victory Leisure Homes, we knew we could count on them to deliver a fantastic space for the Rix team.

“Not only does Chameleon have a strong portfolio of previous work, but the team always enter into a project with inspiring ideas that really get the whole business involved in the design of their new workspace.

“The office is the heart of a company, the culture and its soul. Culture is very important to the Rix Group, and we have no doubt that Chameleon is the perfect choice to deliver a space where our team can reconnect and our culture can thrive.”

Click here to see our previous projects. 

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Gold SKA Rating

Chameleon achieve their first Gold SKA Rating for project!

By Chameleon

We are delighted to announce our design and fit-out project for Hull Universities Energy and Environment Insitute has achieved the first ever Gold SKA Rating in the region!

Achieving the highest rating in the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) environmental assessment scheme, the hub boasts 84% of the 86 strong criteria set up as part of the SKA assessment – making it officially one of the greenest educational hubs in the UK.

The SKA rating is an environmental assessment scheme that measures fit-out projects against a set of sustainability ‘good practice’ criteria. ‘Good practice’ measures cover everything from responsible sourcing of materials, reducing waste and diverting materials from landfill, to CO2 emissions, lighting design, energy efficient hand dryers and biodiversity.

The announcement also marks the first SKA Rating for our team at Chameleon. Shaun Watts, Chairman, commented: “We are delighted with the Gold SKA Rating achieved for the new Energy and Environment Institute. At Chameleon, we work with sustainability front of mind on every project. It was particularly important during this project, given the nature of the hub, to showcase the building as a leader in global environmental resilience and energy sustainability.

“Day-to-day, we paid careful consideration to of all the materials used and constant monitoring of onsite activities from an environmental and sustainability perspective. It was a pleasure to be part of a larger team, all of whom were dedicated to delivering a world-class, planet-friendly project.”

Amongst the environmental design elements in the project, 80% of carpet and soft floor finishes were reused/recycled, 50% of vinyl finishes were recycled through a closed-loop scheme, and 80% of the timber flooring was reused – with the remaining percentage diverted from landfill.  

Paul Batchelor, Partner at RLB, said: “Delivering the SKA Gold Rated academic hub for the pioneering Energy and Environment Institute at the University of Hull was a fantastic project for the team at RLB to lead. Sustainability was at the very core of this project and the collaboration of the entire team was key to its success, achieving the first SKA Gold in the region is a brilliant credit to everyone involved.”

Professor Dan Parsons, Director at the Energy and Environment Institute, added: “When we secured funding to bring our multi-disciplinary team of experts under one roof on the University campus, we wanted to create a space which was both modern and stylish, but which also showcased excellence in sustainability.

“It’s only right that an Institution centred on tackling the global climate crisis be based in a building which is environmentally fit for purpose.

“With the support of our Estates team at the University and the contractors Chameleon Business Interiors – who deserve an enormous amount of credit for this project – we have created a space which truly practices what it preaches.

“This SKA Gold award is recognition of the hard work and dedication of all those involved in the refurbishment.”

The Energy and Environment Institute at the University of Hull brings together the skills and capabilities of leading researchers to tackle global challenges related to climate change and a low carbon transition, and their consequences for society and livelihoods.

Now home to over 100 staff and PhD researchers, the Institute is leading research in some of the areas of the world most at-risk from climate change, including flood prone areas such as Vietnam’s Mekong and Red River deltas, the Congo River in Africa, as well as locations much closer to home.

You can see more of the 2019 project for Hull University here.

Dulux colour of the year 2021

Dulux Colour of the year 2021

By Chameleon, Office Interiors

Last month well-known Paint brand Dulux announced their colour of the year for 2021: Brave Ground. The warm, earthy tone was reportedly chosen by their colour experts due to its bolstering nature and its ability to connect back to nature and the simple things. It creates a feeling of stability, growth and potential; providing a firm foundation for change and creativity.

Dulux decided on the shade after months of collaboration work with paint specialists, as well as trend forecasters, design specialists, editors and architects from across the globe.

After a turbulent 2020 (to say the least!) it emerged from their trend forecasts that many of us are reassessing what really matters in our lives. We’re taking stock and finding a new and positive way forward by having faith in ourselves, working together, building on the past and planning for the future. Creative director of Dulux UK Marianne Shillingford explained that “As a result of the global pandemic many people’s priorities are shifting significantly, to focus much more on their well-being,”

We spoke to our design team to hear their thoughts on Brave Ground and if they expect to see it in commercial interiors in the coming months…

Kevin, Head of Design: “If I’m being completely honest, Brave Ground was the last thing I was expecting to be as ‘colour of the year’ and not something I immediately appreciated. For me, the colour of the year to be something bold; the main event – not the supporting act! That said, recently we have been seeing a shift in commercial interiors, especially workplaces towards a more domestic feel (or ‘resi-mercial’ – a phrase I’ve wholeheartedly adopted from my time working in Canada). The focus now seems to be on wellness, agile working and biophilic design with many schemes now aiming to bring the outside in with planting, exposed natural finishes including brick, concrete and steel and muted tones. I suppose Brave Ground does fit in well with this landscape, I won’t be surprised to see this incorporated in some of our new & current projects going forward!”

Fiona, Interior Designer: “I never thought I’d be a fan of such a neutral shade, however after recently painting my bedroom in a very similar colour I’ve been converted! I just love the natural and simplistic feel it brings to a space – the perfect base to build upon to compliment many accessories.”

Photo credit – Dulux

flexible workspace

The importance of flexible workspace

By Chameleon, News, Office Design

Now more than ever it is important to have a flexible workspace. Whether the need for flexibility comes in the form of areas for staff to collaborative or the ability to efficiently socially distance, workspace proxemics are an important element to consider when designing an office space that can adapt to the demands of its users.

Proxemics is the study of human use of space and the effects that population density has on behaviour, communication, and social interaction. It goes without saying that a loud overcrowded office isn’t the ideal environment for communication and productivity! Since the outbreak of COVID-19 back in March many of us have seen the way we work drastically change, and with social distancing measures becoming mandatory we have all had to adjust. For many organisations, the number of employees safely allowed in their office drastically reduced overnight leading to staff working remotely from home. But global pandemic or not, the priority of a space should always remain the same, the people who work there.

At Chameleon we believe in designing for people, not a pandemic, and have been designing flexible people inspired workspaces for over 20 years. Each space we design takes proxemics into account and is tailored around our clients’ company culture and the well-being of the employees that work within it. By working to this mantra, we have created spaces that have enabled our clients to successfully adapt to the ever-changing guidelines relating to COVID-19 and allow for vital human interaction to continue safely.

Our designers Kev and Fiona have shared some top tips for designing a flexible space:

Multi-purpose Furniture

By introducing multi-purpose furniture you’re able to give a space a variety of uses, booths are a great example of this.  Booths not only provide the perfect space for a meeting or to take a break but they can also be used as an alternative working area should desk space become limited.  Booths also permit a natural, physical separation for social distancing providing the short-term solution for social distancing instead of acrylic screens. Our designers recently used the JDD Bob booth in a project we completed in Sheffield for First Group to add flexibility to their workspace, check it out…

Modern technology to provide better connectivity

Providing ample connection points throughout the space allows staff to work from a variety of locations, rather than just their nominated desk. By including sockets, USB points, server connections and additional WAP points in communal areas, staff can move freely and you can get more use out of the space. This also applies to AV hook-ups, providing these in areas other than your designated meeting areas you can create more space appropriate for presentations or larger meetings. having the right connections and technology available such as a Smart TV or Apple AirPlay for your staff enables you to transform breakout areas or communal spaces into flexible spaces perfect for collaboration and increased productivity.

Separate space with moveable dividers

Space dividers such as moveable walls and screens on wheels enable a space to be transformed. These are a particularly great addition to meeting rooms so that they can be divided into smaller areas or opened to create a large area for staff to collaborate. In July of this year, we handed over Victory Leisure’s new customer experience centre. Their team were looking for somewhere they could bring clients to impress, but also somewhere their team could collaborate and brainstorm ideas. Check out the flexible space we created for them…

Utilise all your space – even if it’s outdoors

Outdoor areas can not only be a great way to boost staff morale (especially on a sunny day when no one wants to be stuck indoors!) but also allow staff to effectively social distance due to being able to maintain closer working proximity in open-air. Whether you have land around your building or an unused roof space there are so many options for transforming it into a brilliant extension to your workspace. Check out this space we created for Hugh Rice

If you’re interested in transforming your workspace into a flexible hub for collaboration and productivity – get in touch with our team here

Click here to see examples of a flexible workspace. 

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