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Celebrating National Stationery Week 2017 – ‘Writing Matters’

National Stationery Week

This year, National Stationery Week runs from the 24th April until the 30th April. Whilst digital technology is becoming increasingly important to us for daily use, this yearly event promotes that writing by hand continues to be as valuable as ever and encourages people to put pen to paper more often. At Discount Office UK, we love everything stationery and know that ‘writing matters’, so we are always excited to help promote National Stationery Week.

Although many of us make use of a computer every day, both at home and in the workplace, research commissioned by National Stationery Week is providing very promising results that most people still believe that it’s so important to be able to write by hand:

  • 91% of children aged between 8 and 15 think it’s import to be able to write by hand
  • 86% of business managers still expect candidates applying for jobs to be able to write proficiently by hand, as well as have keyboard skills.

Why ‘writing matters’

There’s absolutely no doubting that digital technology has many advantages and makes life much easier in so many ways, but this doesn’t take away from all of the benefits we gain from writing by hand. Writing by hand might be seen as old fashioned, but it will always be a relevant skill.

Here are just 3 of the most important reasons why choosing pen and paper is good for us:

pens#1 Writing by hand helps our memory

Research suggests that writing by hand helps to increase our memory and help us retain more information than when we type. Writing with a pen helps to stimulate the part of the brain known as the reticular activating system, which helps filter down everything that the brain needs to process. The RAS helps to bring the most important information to the fore.

#2 Writing is good for stress relief

The physical act of writing with pen on paper can be a great stress reliever and can help to improve focus and attention.

#3 Writing keeps our brain sharp and helps creativity

Choosing to write by hand regularly helps to foster deeper thinking and creativity, helping to keep the brain sharp.

There are also many reasons why the practice of writing by hand is important for businesses. It can be tempting to rely on technology, but there are certainly some aspects of using a computer or mobile device that can also be a distraction and can detract a sense of humanness that can be valuable in business.

  • Paper doesn’t bombard you with push notifications – Computers and mobile devices can be really distracting. At any moment, a push notification can take our focus away from what we are working on and in many cases, the information that the notification is providing isn’t relevant or important. Using pen and paper helps you stay engaged with what you are doing and helps things get done faster.
  • Writing by hand is much more personal – When it comes to communication, there are some times when a hand written note can be much more powerful. A handwritten card, compliment slip or invitation to a client or customer often has a stronger effect on the recipient.
  • Writing helps you think more about what you are saying – When we type on a keyboard, it’s so easy to delete what’s been written. Writing with pen and paper makes us think harder about what we are saying, so we either take more care to get things right first time, or writing can encourage us to go through more drafts until work is the best it can be.

If you are inspired to take up pen and paper and promote the mantra that ‘writing matters’ to your co-workers or employees, Discount Office UK should be your first point of call for all your business stationery needs. We can supply everything you need in terms of paper, pens, pencils and writing equipment.

Call today on 0800 298 5742 and our friendly team will always be happy to assist you.

Top 10 must Have Office Supplies

Desk chairs

Having the right kind of desk chairs for your employees is very important. Your workers are in their seats between 9-5, five days a week, which means that there are bound to be some kind of health implications. So, it’s your duty as the employer to make sure that you provide comfortable seating that provides the right support.

Computer cleaning equipment

Believe it or not, if we were to swab your computer equipment, we can almost guarantee that we’d find all kinds of bacteria. It has even been claimed that some keyboards are dirtier than a toilet!  So stock up on some computer cleaning gear for your employees and make sure they clean equipment regularly.

Ball point pens

Is it just us, or do pens just disappear and at the most inconvenient time? You can never have enough pens, so make sure your stationary cupboard is full of them.

Box Files

Keeping organised plays an important role in managing your workload. So, we included box files in this list. Make sure you’re ahead of the game and your work is maintained appropriately.

Letter Trays

Having letter trays at your desk can help improve the quality of your work as well as help you keep organised. In our opinion, they’re an office must have.

Janitorial supplies

Maintaining cleanliness at your office is a legal requirement. So, to make sure you’re able to stay on top of things, have a cupboard full of janitorial supplies, ready for any messy situation.

Refreshments

You can’t have an office without refreshments. Although it may not be against the law, we think it should be! Having tea and coffee during a mundane day really can lift moods and increase motivation. So stock up now.

Notice Board

A notice board is a way to communicate with your employees. Let them know what’s going on in the company, or let them tell you.

Storage boxes

All offices have things they like to store away, so keep it neat, organised and out of the way with a storage box. A necessity for every office.

Memo pads

It goes without saying that memo pads are a basic office necessity. Regardless of offices going paperless, there will always be a need for the old fashioned paper and pen.

To talk to us about your office stationery needs, you can call Discount Office UK today on 0800 298 57 42.

Why You Should Be Switching To Self-Inking Stamps

In any business, it’s usually the small changes that can make a big difference when it comes to saving time. It may be an old cliché, but “time is money” so it’s always important to be looking for ways to make better use of time. Self-inking stamps are one way cut to cut down the amount of time spent filling in paperwork, forms and mail. At Discount Office UK, we supply Colop self-inking stamps and refill pads to help improve efficiency in your office.

Here are some of the biggest benefits of using self-inking stamps:

self-inking stampsThey can be custom made

Colop self-inking stamps can be custom made to suit your requirements. A large selection of different colours are available to choose from and there are a large selection of sizes. If you prefer, you can choose just one stamp to use for a variety of different documents, or you may prefer to keep large and small stamps, depending on the size of the document, envelope or package being stamped.

Colop self-inking stampsThey are long lasting

Self-inking stamps are designed to be used thousands of times before they require an ink refill. The ink is contained within the stamp, so unlike traditional rubber stamps and ink pads, there is no need to worry about ink drying out quickly if accidentally left out.

There’s no need to carry around ink pads separately

A key problem with traditional rubber stamps is that you also have to carry around ink pads. When you need to carry more than one part, it can be pretty easy to forget ink and bring a stamp or vice versa.

Colop self-inking stampsThey give a quality image every time

One of the key problems with using traditional rubber stamps is that if you don’t get a sufficient covering of ink on the stamp, the image may be appear unclear and messy. On the other hand, if you get too much ink on a stamp, this could make a real mess of paperwork or mail. In contrast, Colop self-inking stamps produce a clear image every time, even when used in quick succession. This means that you can stamp a pile of paperwork, or mail in one go.

The advanced technology used to produce self-inking stamps allows for much more intricate designs, from addresses, dates, or even brand logos. Rather than barely legible prints, the impressions are practically laser printer quality.

For further information and pricing on Colop self-inking stamps and ink refills, please call us today on 0800 298 57 42.

We also supply date stamps, rubber stamps and free proofs.

self-inking date stamp

Five ways to get great value from your office furniture

If you’re planning an office revamp this year or just want to make the best of your work space, we have some top tips to help you get the most from your office furniture.

At the end of the day, price isn’t the only consideration and there are other ways to realise the value of your items of office furniture.

Whether you want to transform just one office or the entire workplace, here are some tips on how to get great value from your office furniture:

Think ahead – you may just need one chair or a couple of extra filing cabinets now but what about that new member of staff starting next month or the meeting room that you’ve been thinking about updating for some time? By planning ahead rather than just satisfying your immediate needs you can save yourself money by buying in bulk and sticking to just one delivery fee, if this applies to your order.

Measure up – there is nothing more embarrassing than having office furniture delivered only to find that it is too small or too big to fit in the desired spot. It is always advisable to take measurements more than once or get two people to measure the same spot or item of furniture to ensure you’re being accurate when choosing furniture to fit. It is also worth considering access – how easy will it be to get larger items to their desired location? Will you need to use different doorways and is there anything that might block your way? By thinking about these logistical elements now you’ll save yourself time and stress once your furniture arrives.

Delivery – as well as thinking about the practicalities of delivery you will need to consider the cost. It might be you can get your office furniture cheaper elsewhere but if the delivery is expensive and takes a long time you may be better off buying from another provider. If you are planning refurbishment works prior to having your furniture delivered, then speak to your provider so that everything can be co-ordinated.

Added extras – Think about what else your office furniture supplier can provide – from colour swatches to office products and equipment to kit out your new work spaces.

Getting great value isn’t just about getting a great price, it’s about getting a great service. At Discount Office we can provide your office furniture and office supplies at competitive prices with friendly customer service. We’ll sort everything out so you can focus on your core business duties and add value to your business by providing a prompt, efficient service.

Contact us today on 0800 298 5742 to find out more.

The Must Have Office Products Every Workplace Needs

Whether you run a small business or are responsible for procurement in a large organisation, one thing you simply can’t manage without is office products. Designed with the needs of the typical desk based employee in mind, office supplies come in many shapes, sizes and colours but we think there are several must-have products that every workplace needs regardless of the size of business or the industry you operate in.

Here is our guide to the office products you can’t work without:

Computer peripherals – not many modern workplaces can exist without computer equipment and thus the need for peripherals such as monitors, keyboards, mice and mouse mats, printers and mobile storage devices. When purchasing your computer equipment, don’t forget to buy batteries or your office productivity may suffer.

computer-mouse

Waste Bins – Once you get past the furniture basics – desks, chairs, storage cupboards and the all- important tea and coffee facilities – next on the list comes waste receptacles. You can’t expect to run a tidy, efficient workplace if there is rubbish lying around, so providing plenty of waste bins close to desks and break out areas will encourage people to throw their rubbish away. Choosing colourful plastic or metal bins will ensure they can’t be missed and if you choose wisely, you can also co-ordinate with your other office accessories such as magazine racks and letter trays to reinforce corporate branding.

Paper Products – no matter how ‘digital’ your workplace is, it is almost impossible to manage without paper products of some sort. Whether it’s printer paper to keep hard copies of invoices or envelopes and labels to post items out to customers, there are plenty of paper essentials to choose from. Don’t forget to choose the most appropriate type and weight of paper to best meet your needs. If you’re a small business and your needs are varied, multi-purpose paper is often the best choice.

office paper

Desk accessories – there is nothing more satisfying than seeing a clean desk, but it is worth remembering that if you want your employees and colleagues to work effectively, they’ll need to have vital equipment and resources at their fingertips. Popular desk accessories will include monitor stands to raise the height of a screen to ensure the user is sitting at the correct height to minimise the risk of back problems and eye strain, as well as pen holders, filing trays and notepads to ensure everything can be kept in order.

Of course, there are many more office products which your workplace might need, and depending on the size and nature of your company, you’ll probably need to re-order on a regular basis. However, if you can get the basics right from the start, you’ll give your staff the best opportunity to do their jobs properly.

To find out more about the types of office supplies available or to place an order for your must-have office products please call Discount Office today on 0800 298 5742.

It’s definitely time to choose your corporate Christmas cards

As we are now firmly into November it is time to think about Christmas. After all, the shops have already started playing the usual Christmas songs and have been fully decorated with tinsel and fairy lights for weeks. In the office Christmas means a few extra things have to be considered along with your normal day to day business. These include the following:

• Your corporate Christmas cards
• Decorating the office
• The office party (although hopefully someone has already organised this one!)
• Deciding the office opening hours and staff cover

At Discount Office UK we can help you with at least one of these tasks. With years of experience we can help you choose the right seasonal cards for your business and produce quality, bespoke overprinted cards that can be sent out with plenty of time to spare. All you need to do is think about the type of card you want. For example you may want a traditional image that everyone can identify with – a snow filled scene, or maybe something humorous, or perhaps something with a message as the image itself such as “Season’s Greetings” or “Merry Christmas”.

christmas-present

Once the image for the front of the card is selected then it is time to agree on your message. Many businesses stick with a theme of thanking their customers and wishing them a prosperous and joy-filled New Year, or something along those lines. This is usually followed with a thank you from a department, or the whole business itself, which can be signed, as needed, by individuals. Of course you will need to use your record keeping systems to order precisely the right quantity of cards that you require. No one wants to end up with extra boxes of cards lying around the office!

If you are ready to order your corporate Christmas cards this month then then give us a call at Discount Office UK on 0800 298 57 42

How colour can help you remember

Most of us could do with a little help remembering things. As we get older our memory doesn’t seem to be as good as it once was. But luckily for us there are many tips and tricks out there to help us improve our brainpower, or simply to cheat and make life easier. Displaying information we need to retain in a way that helps the memory process is one key way of doing this, and the effective use of colour in notes and displays is a beneficial tool. So if you are creating handouts, notes or brochures then it is worth knowing what role different colours play in our brain.

It may not be the same for everyone, but there is some evidence out there that these particular colours tend to work in the following ways:

Blue – can help something complicated appear more simple. It tends to have a calming effect. For heavy-going technical data this could be a real winner.

Green – is a very balanced colour, carrying no threat or emotion with it. Consequently it is a great colour to use in a feedback document – if you are appraising someone else’s work for example.

ink-cartridges

Purple – has been proven to make information more memorable so if there is something in your notes that needs to stand out this is a good colour to use. Obviously it needs to be used sparingly though, as it doesn’t work if all your content is in a purple hue.

Yellow – is now firmly associated with highlighting text and so it clearly indicates in your work that the section is a must-retain area.

Orange – is very much a call to action colour. If your information has key areas within it that you or the audience need to action, then orange is the must use colour to default to.

Red – maybe it is just tradition that important text is placed in red. After all in the days before the colour printer, more diverse colours were not so freely available, and red was often the only alternative. However, in both nature and in tradition we see red as important, to be paid heed to, and so it makes sense to continue to incorporate it in your information where a person really does need to read and remember the text.

Colour is a great way to make your information as easy to digest as possible and to help others retain the key points you are trying to make. Make sure your colour printer provides all the colour you need to do a memorable job by keeping your stock of colour printer cartridges up to date. At Discount Office UK we have all the Inkjet and laser toner cartridges you need to make a colourful impression. Call us on 0800 298 57 42 for more details or to place an order.

Top Ways to Buy Office Stationery on a Budget

With all the necessary parts of your business you’ll want to ensure that you’re saving as much money as possible whilst keeping things running productively. This is especially true for your office stationery and all the essential supplies that you’ll need for smooth operations. With some forward planning and consideration there are many ways you can quickly cut the costs of your stationery supplies without compromising on quality.

Here are our top tips for buying your office stationery on a budget:

Be organised

With so much to focus on, stationery might not be at the top of your priority list, however leaving it till it’s an emergency to place an order will only bump up the costs of delivery and contribute to rushed choices which may not be so cost-effective.

Be sure to purchase your office stationery before you completely run out, so that you can choose a cheaper delivery option and potentially save big over the course of the year!

Make bulk purchases

By ordering in large quantities for a longer period, instead of getting stationery as and when you need it, you could receive a good discount on your items as many retailers will give you a bulk buy offer. You could do this on a monthly or quarterly basis depending on your needs, meaning that you’ll save significantly on your necessary items as well as with delivery costs.

Set up a Business Account with your supplier

With a business account you’ll be able to set up a purchasing schedule to suit you, plus it will be less timely and simpler to place an order. Your supplier may also offer you exclusive discounts on your stationery and with a dedicated account manager you’ll benefit from better customer support, order tracking and returns processing.

Only buy what you need

Although bulk purchases may save you a lot of money, bulk buying unnecessary items like multiple different coloured packs of post-it notes or highlighters when you only need one, will add up hugely over the course of the year. Instead, cut costs and only get what you really need for productive office operations.

If your order is wrong, return it!

Although it may seem a hassle to return a box of pens that aren’t quite right or notepads in the wrong size, holding onto it and not making use of the supplies isn’t cost-efficient. By returning it you’ll be able to get the most value from your order, potentially save money and save on storage space for the products you really need.

If you’re looking for office stationery on a budget, why not browse through our wide range of quality office essentials, or contact us to find out more about the benefits of a Business Account? Simply call our team on 0800 298 5742, or use our contact form here to get in touch.

7 Tips for Organising Your Office Storage

Keeping important documents on hand, and having the essential stationery items and supplies accessible is a must to ensure your office operations run smoothly each day. However, all these necessary things can clutter an office space in an instant and hamper a productive environment.

So how can you keep your office and your storage organised and help staff organise themselves? Here are our 7 top tips:

office folders

Use a folder for everything

Whatever paper documents you handle, you should organise them and put them in a dedicated folder. There are so many different varieties of folder available and all make for an extremely cost-effective solution to securely hold and arrange your important documents. Be sure to label them all so you everyone knows where to find the things they need, and keep items that need to be used on a frequent basis within easy reach.

Get a good filing cabinet

Having a strong and secure filing cabinet will help you keep track of the more important documents that you may not want other staff members to have access to. Again, it’s important to label the folders and files within your cabinet and take the time to sort all documents into the appropriate places. Although many of these files may not be actively used, storing them away properly could help with problems where they need to be found in the long-term.

Set a dedicated activity space

If you or your staff need to complete tasks frequently, it may be best to assign one area of the office as an activity space. All documents and stationery needed to complete the task, such as staplers, scissors or a printer, should be put and kept in this space. Not only will this save the hassle and time of trying to find and assemble all the things needed each time, it could also improve how you arrange your office layout to increase productive working.

Having dedicated spaces for your office items is a good option for better organisation and can be applied to anything from equipment manuals, to items you’ll need to take when travelling out of the office.

Raise your storage

If you want to optimise for increasing storage and help to cut the clutter, go vertical with your storage and shelving units. Vertical storage will help to maximise office floor space whilst ensuring that employees’ desks are freed up of unessential items. This may help your staff to feel less overwhelmed as they’ll have a clearer workspace to keep them organised.

Label everything

Again, making use of labels is so important to making sure everyone knows where to find office supplies. As well as files and folders, label your shelving units, cabinets and drawers. A simple label may make people more inclined to return things to their right places to keep the office tidy, safe and presentable.

Divide up drawers

You can by drawers with in-built dividers or buy your own dividers (or trays if the drawers are shallow) which are very cheap to buy. Instead of having all pens, papers, notes and folders bundled up and lost in their drawers, staff can organise their space to save time and reduce stress.

Keep up a regular maintenance

Spark good organisational habits by carrying out maintenance at the end of each week. Make sure that everything is put back into place and unneeded paper or files are removed. This will prevent clutter from building and things from being lost.

If you’d like to get your office re-organised and give it the de-clutter and tidy that it needs, you can browse through our wide range of discount office supplies. We can also help you cut the costs and take the hassle out of your supply needs with our reliable management service. Call the Discount Office UK team on 0800 298 5742 to find out more.

Why We Will Always Need Pens and Paper in the Office

Tablets, touch screens and wireless devices are commonplace in the home and office in 2016, but simple pen and paper still remain staples of the office.

We take it for granted that all of our electronic devices are connected. We can open up our emails on a browser, on a tablet, or even on our smartphones when we are on the go. Through digital technology, we can be connected to as many people as possible at all times and come to expect all information as fast as possible. However, whilst a large percentage of people are very comfortable with digital devices and would consider themselves tech savvy, it’s fair to say that we all like to keep a pen and paper at our desks.

paper notebookWhilst a lot of technology has quickly gone out of date or out of favour (think of a floppy disk, or even a laptop that is more than a couple of years old!), pens and paper have been with us since ancient times. We are always competitive about having the latest technology and it can be embarrassing if you haven’t got the latest iPhone or Windows update, but this is never the case when reaching for a biro, fountain pen, or even a paper notebook. Pen and paper have never been out of fashion.

Trusty pen and paper

There’s something old fashioned, yet comforting and human about jotting down important information on a piece of paper. If we have to remember an important date or write a to-do list, we often choose to write this down on paper even if we have also inputted it into our phone or tablet. Most likely, the reason for this is that we don’t fully put our trust in technology. Although digital devices make our lives much easier, they can still let us down if they run out of battery, lose internet connection or break.

ball point penAlthough technology will be on our side 95% of the time, when it does fail, we can rely on a trusty pen and a piece of paper to come to our rescue. In an office environment, we can’t afford to lose important notes or miss important meetings, so traditional pen and paper will always be a mainstay of the office. As much as we are driven forward by technology and commit to keeping up to date, we will always rely on the good old desktop essential that has been with us throughout history.

If you are short of pens, paper or other essential desktop supplies, you can call Discount Office UK today on 0800 298 5742 and we will be glad to assist you.