The purpose of this article is to explain the benefits of reuse and in particular the Warp It Reuse System - in relation to Space Management, Decanting, and Buildings on large estates.
Perhaps you are a Space or Decant Manager, maybe you are trying to explain the benefits of reuse, or maybe you are looking to promote reuse to the Space or Decant Managers within your organisation.
Questions to ask before considering a reuse program to help with decants and space management.
- As a Space or Decant Manager, do you want to liberate space around the estate?
- Do you want to find MORE new homes with LESS work, for that stuff that is just laying around, OR is generated as part of a building clearance?
- Do you want to reduce the incidences of people ringing and emailing you for surplus assets?
- Do you want to be able to upload a spreadsheet of assets onto an online marketplace with a couple of clicks?
- Do you want other Project Managers (or staff) to be able to view assets in an easy online marketplace?
- Does keeping that spreadsheet up to date take too much time and could it be optimised by an online database?
- Do your departing staff slow down the reuse process because they don’t know what to take or leave?
- Do you want to control what assets get traded across the estate?
- Would you like to create an online marketplace where departing staff can take what assets they are going to take, whilst the remaining assets are advertised to the rest of the estate?
- At the same time would you like any surplus items to be advertised to charities and schools in the area?
- Do you want to track your reuse efforts, environmental and financial savings, in order to be able to demonstrate the value of your activities and make a business case for more resources for the next move?
If you kept saying yes, then you might like this article:
Here's how reuse and Warp It can help solve some problems around space management
Problem: If there is a space humans will fill it
Solution: Make sure decluttering is a regular habit
Because space is expensive, we have to learn to use it effectively. The problem we have as humans is that when we see a space, we naturally want to fill it, often with something for a rainy day.
‘I just might need that… later’
‘I will just put it over here... for a bit.’
‘Later’ becomes a week, a month and then it is there. That is its space. That becomes that asset's space, even though it is not being used regularly. There’s nothing more permanent than temporary. This is also linked to people tending to hoard items as well for no good reason.
Having an established, systematic, automatic reuse program can free up space because it provides a really good mechanism for staff to constantly declutter and clear their space. If you make it easy to start to declutter, they will declutter.
If you make decluttering a normal habit, people will declutter regularly and keep space free. We have a number of campaigns to help with this.
Decluttering is part of the decant or building clearance process, as one of their big problems is that you get left with a lot of spare stuff when people leave.
Having a systematic reuse program in place well before a building clearance starts is a good idea. This means you can encourage staff one year, two years, or six months before the building clearance, to start to declutter their assets. By the time of the clearance, the task is more manageable.
Problem: Huge haul of assets to find homes for at end of the clearance process
Solution: A reuse program simplifies asset redistribution from building clearances
Often as part of the building clearance procedure, there is a massive haul of assets left over when everybody leaves, and sometimes those assets have got to be scrapped because something else is happening with the building. Either there is an asbestos survey, the building is being sold, or the building is being refurbished, but because of tight timescales, it makes it really hard for those assets to find a new home and get reused effectively.
Assets being left behind is usually nobody's fault. What commonly happens as part of the building clearance process is that you have those staff who are moving who want to actually claim some of those assets before they move, but they take ages to decide what they are going to take, effectively pushing back all the other deadlines. This means at the end you are left with stuff that you thought was going to move but is not. You are left with stuff that you would have been able to redistribute because it is reusable and desirable.
With an online platform like Warp It you can advertise the availability of items way in advance of the clearance date. You can advertise the items to a particular set of staff first and tell them they need to decide what is needed by a certain date. You can then advertise the rest to the staff body. You can then advertise the rest to 3rd parties. Al of this is automatic and means that by the time the clearance date comes all of the assets are booked out and follow the priority required! More here.
Problem: Bottlenecks in the process reduce scalability
Solution: A digital reuse system improves visibility
Sometimes Space and Decant Managers would throw the contents of a whole room in the skip because they don’t have an online portal to list it on. Ahem… Warp It!
On Warp It, people can see up to 7 photos, they can see the description, and they can make claims. The system tracks who gets what. Can put them into a priority list and can even send notifications to logistics!
The old-fashioned alternative is that you put all that stuff on a spreadsheet and it is not as shareable, which means you get more emails, more telephone calls, a busy inbox, and time consumption that starts to affect your work.
If it is all in a marketplace where everyone can see it, people can claim the things they want to claim. If you list 50 chairs and someone claims 20, it goes down to 30. It tracks all of that automatically so that someone does not have to keep updating a spreadsheet.
With a centralised digital marketplace, you can quickly log in and see what’s available. A spreadsheet is a bottleneck that does not scale very well or engage many participants. An online platform can help you clear a building quickly and reuse the items with far fewer communications and hassle.
Problem: Let's appreciates the space or decant manager
Solution: Data and results
With Warp It, you can put a financial and environmental value on your efforts. By putting an effort in at one point, you can see exactly what that results in, which means you can make a case for more resources in the future. (See what metrics we track here)
It strengthens your position. It strengthens the profile of your activities. You can see how much you saved the organisation, donate to charity, how much carbon is saved, how many KGs have been avoided. Read more about this here.
Space and Decant Managers have many reasons to be interested in and supportive of reuse, as they are one of the main benefactors of the improved system it brings. If you are in one of these positions, or wish to help someone who is, check out the webinar below.