A Coffee and a Chat with Vivienne McQuade

Could you describe your role and the responsibilities you have within Worksmart?

”I have recently taken up the role of office manager with Worksmart. I am responsible for the day-to-day operation of the office, ensuring that everything is running smoothly and supporting all departments and employees to enable them to be as productive as possible during their working day.”


You’ve recently joined the Worksmart Team. How has it been so far?

”It has been really good! It’s always daunting starting a new job with a new company, learning all the new processes and procedures (and all the new names!) but I can honestly say I feel like I have been here a lot longer due to the welcoming nature of the whole team. Everyone has been so helpful and I have settled in extremely quickly.”



How did joining Worksmart come about? What did you know of the company beforehand?

”It was purely by chance that I came across the job opportunity. My partner actually sent me the advert and suggested I apply for the role, as Worksmart seemed like a progressive and interesting new challenge for me, something that I had been considering for some time. I did not know much about the company previously but once I checked out the website and saw the calibre of high profile works that the team had carried out, I was keen to become part of the successful business that had been built by the management team.”



In terms of career progression, where do you see yourself in five years?

”My aim is to progress to a role in project management. This was a module that I completed as part of my degree and I thoroughly enjoyed it.”



What’s your best piece of advice for a young person looking to get into your profession?

”BE RELIABLE!!! I have previously given presentations to the engineering students at Kilmarnock College and to the participants of long-term unemployment initiatives with local councils and, as an employer, I’ve always maintained that the most important thing is to be reliable! Turn up, be punctual…the rest we can teach you but you can’t learn if you don’t turn up! Also, do the small jobs/tasks well and then you will be trusted with bigger tasks. If you can’t be bothered to do the small stuff well then you won’t be trusted with more important jobs!”


When you’re not in the office, what do you like getting up to?

”I am currently starting my 3rd year of an Honours Degree in Business Management so a lot of my time is taken up with studying but when I have downtime, I do a lot of walking with my dog and going to the gym. I am also the area contact for Scotland for a national children’s heart charity who support families all over the UK when their child has been diagnosed with a congenital heart defect. This is a support role to give practical information and emotional support to parents and family members.”


If you could choose to do any other job in the world, what would it be and why?

”A doctor/surgeon. To be able to help families in their darkest hour and remain humble like many of the surgeons/doctors I have met would be a life well spent.”


Coffee and a chat with Donald Brown

Could you describe your role and the responsibilities you have within Worksmart?

My role is Estimating Manager, I am responsible for ensuring that tenders are submitted on time and to the standard and quality clients expect..

You’ve recently joined the Worksmart Team. How has it been so far?

Initial signs have all been very positive, staff have been helpful and made we feel welcome and the Directors have all been supportive throughout my bedding in period.
I always feel a bit apprehensive about starting a new role “have I made the right decision” I would say a definite yes to this.

How did joining Worksmart come about?

I have been looking for an opportunity to get back into a Management role and was approached to come in for a chat, both my interviews went very well and I had a good feeling about the company.

What did you know of the company beforehand?

I knew very little about the company but I done my research and all the feedback from people I know in the industry was very positive about the company and just as important feedback about my future boss.

In terms of career progression, where do you see yourself in five years?

I chased a dream of being a Director when I was a bit younger but I am in the role I know I can make a difference. I think you get to an age where you know your limitations, I still enjoy what I do. I strive to do everything to the best of my ability, in 5 years I would love to be sitting on a beach drinking pina coladas and watching the world go by, but maybe I would just get bored of that?

What’s your best piece of advice for a young person looking to get into your profession?

There are 2 schools of thought on what makes a good Estimator – 1. become a trademan and experience site working for a few years and move into estimating or 2. start of as a trainee estimator, go to college part time and get as much site experience as you can.
I am the latter and maybe biased but with any role, if you work hard, listen, show enthusiasm and absorb as much knowledge as you can, you will always go far.

When you’re not in the office, what do you like getting up to?

I enjoy spending time with my family, love to go to the movies or comedy gig. Enjoy weekends away. Its good to just switch off from work and enjoy your free time.

If you could choose to do any other job in the world, what would it be and why?

I started out life wanting to be a graphic designer, it would have been good to have a go to see if would have been successful. My daughter wants to be an Astronaut so maybe I could do that and join her in space!

Hybrid Working

The Covid-19 pandemic has completely altered our mindset towards work. There has been a monumental shift towards remote working due to the restrictions that were put in place as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. According to data from the Office of National Statistics, prior to the pandemic only 5% of the UK workforce worked mainly from home with 65% of employers not offering regular home working. Post pandemic, 65% is set to drop to 37% representing a significant change in the way we work and engage with our employers.


Throughout the last 18 months, bosses have discovered that when implemented well, hybrid working is a much more efficient and cost-effective model. People are also able to achieve an improved work-life balance which has made home working increasingly more appealing to many.

While some employees would prefer to predominantly work from home, most would favour a balance where they are in the office some of the week and spend the remainder working at home. Employers must decide what this new form of ‘hybrid working’ means for them. What procedures/changes will they need to implement to ensure that they are getting the most out of their employees?

For some organisations, moving to remote working will be a significant challenge both practically and financially with a number of things to consider such as IT resources and Health & Safety. It will also completely change the way in which organisations interact internally placing greater demands on management.

It may be argued however that allowing employees greater freedom of choice will enhance performance. No size fits all and every employee will have a different idea of what works best for them. Some may be more productive in the office and some may prefer the distraction free environment of home. This must be considered by companies in order for these new ways of working to be effective.

Many firms have also adopted ‘hot desking’ when individuals work from shared offices close to home. Again, this is another distraction free, professional environment that will encourage high levels of productivity.

With all of these factors to consider, we will start to see the role of a corporate HQ change significantly. Instead of being an everyday location for staff, it will become an environment for collaborative working and a hub for meetings and other corporate events. This will result in a greater focus on staff wellbeing with breakout areas and coaching/quiet zones. There will also be a requirement for greater air filtration systems and improved lighting.

Things that must be considered when returning to the workplace include:

  • Have an understanding of what you need to get the most out of your employees.
  • Listen to the preferences of your employees
  • Engage with contractors and design teams.
  • Regular communication with your team to ensure they know what is required of them.
  • Engage with expert interior contractors who know and understand the requirements of fit out & refurbishment projects in tight demanding timescales and budgets
  • Complete the approach with reviews of how the spaces work and make final tweaks if required
  • Continue to engage and challenge each other in how best we can continue to develop our workplaces
  • Consider working with an expert interior contractor, consultant & furniture specialist company in a design & build (D&B) basis to accelerate and mitigate risk in cost and timescale


How can Worksmart help you?

Worksmart Spatial Planning and Design – COVID-19 Office Refurbishments

  • Safely returning to the office is one of the biggest challenges facing businesses over the coming year. The health and well-being of staff is paramount and instilling a level of confidence high enough in people to encourage them to return to the office is equally important.
  • Through innovative design and spatial planning in the office, Worksmart can help you achieve this and create a safe working environment for your staff. We want to get staff back into the built working environment again.

Spatial Office Redesign

  • Worksmart Contracts are creating offices to match the current and future needs of businesses. You must ensure that your workspace is designed in such a way as to minimise any possible COVID-19 transmission. Long-term solutions are the only response to the current situation and workspaces need to be modified in order to reassure workers.
  • Worksmart’s Spatial Planning and Design team benefits from the expertise of interior designers, architects, space planners, pre-construction specialists and office furniture consultants.
  • By combining all of this knowledge, we have created a team who are capable of meeting the challenges of office design in 2020 and beyond. Thanks to our Spatial Planning and Design team, Worksmart Contracts will be industry leaders when it comes to getting staff safely back into offices.

Air Filtration and Purification Systems

  • Correct filtration and cleaning of air is going to be very important as we attempt to recover some level of normalcy. To do this, offices, buildings, schools, hospitals, supermarkets and any other public places will begin to make use of HEPA and HVAC air filtration technology.
  • HEPA and HVAC systems effectively clean the air and rid it of potentially harmful bacteria and viruses. Even if the country makes a full recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, measures will be put in place to try and prevent future pandemics crippling the economy once again.
  • HVAC systems are designed to replace the air in a building every 20-30 minutes. This constant flow of fresh, clean air will prevent virus spread as well as having other benefits. Cleaner air will reduce headaches, fatigue and other issues that lower workplace productivity.
  • Worksmart are fully certified and can source and install HVAC and HEPA Air Filtration systems in any environment.

Komfort Protective Workspaces

  • With social distancing already accepted as the norm, no one will mind when it’s integrated into the office. This will include the use of free-standing and desk-mounted screens to protect people in the office environment.
  • Partitioning screens are available in a range of sizes and styles and can be used to enhance the character of a space, while also offering protection against virus transmission. Anti-microbial finishes are available for even greater protection.
  • As well as being utilised in the office, these systems will become the norm in waiting rooms, canteens, restaurants, hairdressers and more.

COVID-19 Office Refurbishments

  • Your office may never look the same again. Evolution is the key to ensuring the traditional office survives the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Worksmart can carry out all necessary works to ensure your office space is ready for the return to work. From inconspicuous partitions complete with anti-microbial finishes – safely segregating areas and workers – to new hygiene stations and HEPA air filtration systems, our Spatial Planning and Design team will create a safe working environment you can have confidence in.
  • To discuss how Worksmart can redesign your workspace and help you get your staff back in the office, call us directly on 01563 53 55 11 or leave an enquiry in the form below.

Interior Fit-Out Glasgow

Interior fit-outs make a big difference when it comes to revitalising your workplace. They can be used to extend your existing design concept, or they may need to be rethought entirely to meet new requirements. Whatever you decide on, make sure that you have chosen the best interior fit-out contractors available. This will ensure that everything goes smoothly from start to finish. So, if you’re looking to get an interior fit-out in Glasgow, make sure you opt for the right team. Worksmart contracts have the expertise and knowledge required to ensure that your interior fit-out helps you to make the most of your workspace. Here’s a list of reasons as to why we should be your first and only choice.


The first reason to choose Worksmart Contracts for your interior fit-out in Glasgow is that they know what they’re doing! If you’ve ever had work done by someone who doesn’t really understand their trade, you’ll know how frustrating it can be. You might think that you could do something yourself, but if you don’t have the experience, then there’s no way you would get anything near perfect. It’s not just about getting things finished either; sometimes mistakes happen, which means that you end up paying more than necessary.

When choosing an interior fit-out contractor in Glasgow, ask them questions so that you can see exactly what they can offer you. Ask them about previous projects they have worked on, and find out how long they have been working in the industry. We’re happy to do this if you wish, just get in contact. The longer they have been around, the better chance you have of finding a good fit-out specialist.

Outside Perspective

Another great thing about using an experienced interior fit-out contractor is bringing another set of eyes to the job. Often, people tend to only focus on the size of the space while ignoring other aspects such as lighting, flooring, furniture, etc. By having an outside view of the room, you can spot potential problems before they become too big. These issues include poor ventilation, bad acoustics, lack of natural light, and even structural faults. Having these issues addressed early on can save you lots of hassle later down the line.

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Save Time and Money

When starting an interior fit-out in Glasgow, you also want to consider saving both time and money. There are many different ways that you can go about fitting out a room, including DIY methods. However, most of these options require extensive knowledge and skillsets that aren’t necessarily required by professionals. For example, you wouldn’t expect a plumber to install pipes correctly, nor would you expect a carpenter to lay tile properly. So why would you expect a builder to put together a kitchen? In fact, you shouldn’t. That’s where interior fit-outs specialists come into play. They take care of everything from start to finish, leaving you free to enjoy your new home. This saves you valuable time and energy, allowing you to spend it elsewhere instead.

Increase Productivity

One final benefit of hiring experts, like Worksmart Contracts, is increased productivity. While some tasks may seem simple enough to complete on your own, others need specialized training and expertise. As mentioned above, when dealing with plumbing, electrical wiring, carpentry, tiling, painting, plastering, drywall installation, roof repairs, and much more, you should always seek help from qualified tradespeople. Not only does this ensure quality results, but it helps prevent costly errors and mishaps along the way.


Hiring the right interior fit-outs contractors in Glasgow is essential to ensuring that your project goes smoothly. With years of experience, we offer expert interior fit-outs in Glasgow. We comprehend what needs to be done and the tools needed to achieve perfection. The team will also give you plenty of advice throughout the process, helping you avoid any unnecessary pitfalls. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Office Fit-Out Glasgow

It can be hard to keep yourself and your staff motivated.  Every business has to contend with this, so you’re not alone. However, what really does help, is having the perfect work space.  Think about it. Would you rather worked in a cramped office with no windows and no break room, or a spacious office with lots of natural lighting and a staff room. Obviously, the latter. While you can always refurbish an office, it’s best to get it perfect from the start. If you’re a new business, or a business hoping to relocate, our office fit-out in Glasgow will provide you with a stunning interior space. However, it’s not just down to us. In order for us to provide you with a fantastic space, you need to let us know what you want.

Now, we know this can seem daunting. Ideally, you want to achieve the best office fit-out the first time. It will save you a lot of bother in the long run. However, this should be an exciting time rather than a stressful one. After all, you’re about to have the office of your dreams. There are a number of things you can do to make the process easier for yourself. So, here are four ways you can experience a stress-free office fit-out in Glasgow:

Plan Ahead


Are you looking to move office in the near future? Well, you should start the planning stages of your office fit-out in Glasgow now. You do not want to be in a position where you’re moving staff in while working is being completed. An office space rework requires time and work in order to be perfect. There’s a timeline that should be followed. Now, this can have one of two effects. Fitting this timeline in your workspace can either give you headaches or have little to no impact on your business operations. This will all be down to planning. We’d advise making sure you leave enough time for work to be done before you try to move in.

To get an idea of how long the timeline could be for your office fit-out in Glasgow, consider consulting with a firm first. If you decide to go with one of the highest-quality providers of office fit-outs (us), you can contact us and we’ll help you out with some timeline estimates.

Set a Goal


What kind of office culture do you want to establish? What kind of facilities will you need to achieve this? Where do you want your business to be next year? You should have a set goal in mind for the future of your office. A fit-out is a complicated affair, and in order to get it right, you will need to keep in mind your future goals. Do you want a more relaxed open space where anyone can work anywhere? Or a more efficient and organized one with set areas for set staff? Both are ideal for different businesses, but both are hard to change afterward. So it’s helpful to know what you want when speaking to your fit-out team.

The best way to figure out your goal is to have a sit-down with management and determine what you want from your fit-out, and what outcome you’d like to have.

Set Your Budget


Having a set budget is important. You need to be upfront with your fit-out team about your budget. This is so they can help you to plan in a realistic manner, what your future office could look like. Also, a fit-out usually involves other things, such as buying new office equipment, fixtures, and furniture, as well as lighting and IT needs. You’ll need to consider these as well so you won’t have to agonize over it when time comes.

Once you’ve determined the budget, make sure to leave a little extra available so you have some wriggle room. Our office fit-outs in Glasgow usually stay firm to a budget, but you never know what changes you may feel inspired to make while the work is ongoing.

Hire a Professional Firm


It’s definitely tempting to take a DIY approach to an office fit-out in Glasgow. Slap some paint on there and it’ll be fine; an okay approach to take to your spare room, but not an office where you want to produce your best work. As such, it’s best to leave the fit-out work to the professionals. A quick inspection will reveal what they intend to do with space and incorporate your goals to maximum effect.

To this end you’ll want to do your research on finding the right office fit-out team in Glasgow. They will have experience in fitting out offices in the same industry and have all the knowledge to complete the project from start to finish. Thankfully, we are one such team that can do this. Work Smart has years’ worth of experience in completing successful office fit-outs; a number of which you can view on our website.

Office space can either be a hindrance to your team’s productivity or a boon to them. Make sure you hire the right contractor and one that has your best interests on hand. For more information, please feel free to get in contact. We’re always happy to answer questions.