Designing Ambulatory & Outpatient Care Centers with Modular Interiors

modular interiors for ambulatory and outpatient care clinicsHow we think about healthcare is changing. And with barriers being removed, access to preventative care is on the rise. Millions of people will be searching for places to receive this care. Knowing this, hospitals and health systems are transitioning to leaner facilities like ambulatory and outpatient care clinics that can be dispersed throughout the community.

The Rise of Ambulatory & Outpatient Care Centers

Data from the American Hospital Association supports this new facility model. “Outpatient visits rose from nearly 1,700 per 1,000 persons in 1996 to more than 2,000 visits per 1,000 persons in 2009.” Additionally, “research firm IBIS World, New York City, reports there are 29,440 total emergency, outpatient and ambulatory facilities in the United States today. To meet the anticipated demand for more outpatient care, the number of those facilities is projected to grow to about 31,400 by 2018, a 6.7 increase over the next five years.”

Uncertainty Creates the Need for Flexibility

Because this trend is so new, there is still a great deal of uncertainty in how people will use and work in these facilities. Flexibility in design is paramount to making sure the needs of patients and staff will be met today and into the future. Coming up with solutions to add this flexibility to ambulatory and outpatient care clinics is the hurdle that architects and designers face. And it’s where modular interiors make the biggest difference.

Modular interiors are the inside features of a building that are pre-fabricated off-site, instead of built during construction. They can be adapted as the design and construction process is carried out, saving both time and money. And because modular interiors are not built-in to the facility, they can be reconfigured and reused. This also makes them a very sustainable design choice. A health center director quoted in Health Facilities Management agrees with this sentiment stating,

Prefabricated construction achieves the all-important speed-to-market objective by reducing construction time by up to 30 percent, cuts cost and improves quality control. It’s sustainable, too — it nearly eliminates any construction waste because the materials in the units are sized to fit.

Contact Us for More Information on Modular Interiors

We provide modular interiors including walls, workstations, casework, lockers, and storage systems for use in ambulatory and outpatient care centers. To learn more about modular interiors and how you can incorporate them into your design, contact us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message.


SSG’s Dallas Headquarters Has a New Address

southwest solutions group new dallas office locationSouthwest Solutions Group’s Dallas office is moving to a new location: 2535-B E. State Highway 121, Suite 110 Lewisville, TX 75056. This new office will offer us more flexibility to provide even better service to all of our new and existing clients. Don’t hesitate to come visit us!

Our knowledgeable team – sales representatives, project planners, coordinators, and professional installers – is on hand provide business efficiency systems that will maximize floor space, reduce operating costs, and increase productivity.

We work with architects, interior designers, and facility managers in addition to a wide range of commercial and industrial businesses: government, museum, healthcare, legal, education, and material handling.

Equipment & Services Offered By Southwest Solutions Group in Dallas

If you are curious about the equipment and services we offer, here is a short list of what we can help you with.

  • High Density Storage Shelving: This compact storage option stores literally anything in about half the space of traditional file cabinets or shelves.
  • Movable Walls: These architectural walls allow you to create the space you want quickly, easily, and practically.
  • Vertical Lift Modules: With automated storage you maximize space, improve productivity and increase picking accuracy.
  • Portable Workstations: Replace your cubicles and benching systems with portable workstations that set-up in minutes without any tools.
  • Modular Casework: Flexible casework cabinets are easy to reconfigure and relocate, saving replacement costs and our landfills.
  • Compact Pallet Racks: These motorized pallet racks on tracks allow you to condense your warehouse storage area in half the floor space.
  • Document Scanning: Create a paperless office by converting all your paper files to digital documents.
  • Commercial Fans: Energy efficient commercial fans are quiet, inexpensive to operate, and will cool your facility by 10ºF, in addition to providing heating and ventilation.

Contact Us Today for Help in Dallas

Since 1969, Southwest Solutions Group’s Dallas office has provided business efficiency systems. Our products and services are available on TXMAS Contracts, GSA Federal Contracts, SYSTEC Small Business GSA Contract, NJPA Purchasing Agreement, and numerous Healthcare Purchasing Contracts.

Stop by our new location at 2535-B E. State Highway 121, Suite 110 Lewisville, TX 75056 or give us a call (972) 250-1970 to talk about your needs today!


How to Maximize Warehouse Space Without Expanding

It’s not uncommon for warehouses to quickly run out of space due to the rapid growth during seasonal peaks or even from a slow sales period. There are generally three types of warehouse space inefficiencies that can be addressed to maximize warehouse space without having to overhaul your existing storage or spend resources on relocation or expansion.

Inefficiency #1:  Too much overstock

When warehouses don’t have an efficient inventory management system, they often overstock frequently-used items so they are always readily available. However, a warehouse with too much overstock will typically operate below productivity and safety standards. Pallets of overstock are often stored in aisles, stacked in walkway or dock areas, placed on rack endcaps, or with multiple SKUs of items mixed into single bins. This creates safety hazards for workers and drastically reduces visibility, which in turn leads to difficulty in locating inventory and decreased productivity. Inventory peaks need to be handled with extra labor.maximize warehouse storage space

Inefficiency #2: Too much undemanded product

Too much product that isn’t moving through the warehouse usually indicates that the warehouse isn’t managing inventory levels or outdated product properly. Obsolete inventory remains untouched for months or years. Remember that out-of-date inventory brings no value to the open market and just eats up space.

Inefficiency #3: Poorly used existing space

This inefficiency is a common and inevitable occurrence in warehouses caused by growth or changing storage and service requirements, but it should only be an occasional problem that is quickly fixed by inventory re-evaluations. Warehouses often incur long-term penalties to accomplish short-term goals that end up taking valuable floor space and labor from principal warehouse functions. Other forms of poor space utilization include little vertical space utilization, wide aisles, multiple products in single bin locations (as often occurs with overstocks), and partial units being stored in full unit locations.

Using Your Existing Space

maximize warehouse space with WMSWhen expansion or relocation isn’t an option, try to maximize warehouse space in one or more of the following ways: 1) Outside or temporary storage, 2) Redesigning your warehouse, and 3) Improving your inventory management.

Outside Storage

Overstock can occur when warehouses prepare for seasonal peaks or new products. In these cases, overstocking can be unavoidable, but temporary measures can help handle inventory peaks. Using third party warehousing can store excess inventory or ship items to customers. However, premiums are often charged for short-term contracts as opposed to year-round deals. Products could also be stored on trailers for short-term periods, but this method can also be very expensive. Developing a partnership with a dedicated carrier can reduce these costs.

Warehouse Redesign

The best way to prepare your warehouse for redesign is to first measure your existing space that you have to work with. After that, define your fixed obstacles such as walls, doors, columns, and clearances.  Define storage condition zones, the product’s throughput and replenishment requirements, and the unit handling loads. Establish your material’s flow paths, and from here you can start generating ideas and evaluating your alternatives, making sure that you’re within safety and regulatory compliance.

Another method for consideration is automated storage. Vertical lift modules, vertical carousels, and horizontal carousels can be used to streamline the picking process by bringing stored items directly to the oeprator. These systems can maximize warehouse space by providing more storage density in about 85% less space than shelving, which often require extra space for wide aisles. Many automated storage solutions can also be purchased with software that will integrate with your existing warehouse management system. High density shelving systems can also be installed instead of or to work in tandem with automated storage.

Improved Inventory Managementwarehouse picking management

Speaking of warehouse management, if you don’t have a real-time warehouse management system (WMS), you should probably think about getting one. A WMS is the best way to properly manage your inventory, providing real-time and on-demand information at all levels of the supply chain. A cycle counting program can be implemented to track inventory and ensure obsolete product isn’t taking up space in the warehouse. This way, you can also eliminate your tedious annual physical inventory by doing a little bit of cycle counting every day. A good WMS can also direct products to the best storage location.

After implementing these changes, it’s important to review and analyze your storage and space frequently. Sounds like a lot of work, but it’s worth it to have a more productive, organized, and overall more profitable business.

Where To Start

If all of this seems overwhelming, Southwest Solutions Group® can help.  We can help you develop a plan to maximize warehouse space and provide you with storage solutions that will help you do it, even those nifty automated shuttles and carousels we mentioned earlier. We will also provide you with a free consultation to determine your exact needs. For more information, give us a call at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message today.


What Do the Top Football Teams Use for Storing Gear & Equipment?

football gear storage and organizationWhat do the equipment mangers for the nation’s top college and professional football teams use to store their gear? The answer: Spacesaver mobile shelving! And they don’t just choose Spacesaver because of all the space saved, extra security, organizational features, or customized logo end panels. The top teams choose Spacesaver mobile shelving because they know to be the best, you need the best equipment.

And even though each team has their own special needs, Spacesaver mobile shelving is flexible enough to handle even the toughest challenges. Here are just a few of the teams that rely on Spacesaver to help them store football equipment and gear.

Seattle Seahawks

The last two years, the Seattle Seahawks have dominated the field – competing in the Super Bowl this year and winning in 2014. And what do these champions use to store gear and equipment? You guessed it – Spacesaver! They even liked the mobile shelving so much, they installed it in the Seattle Sounders Football Club too. Click here to learn more about their mobile shelving system.

Oklahoma State University (OSU)OSU football equipment storage

We’ve been working with the equipment managers at OSU for years, helping them make the most of their space with Spacesaver mobile shelving. A few years ago we installed mobile shelving for football helmet storage, and here’s what they had to say,

“We absolutely love our mobile storage shelving.  I’m amazed at the unique storage solutions you have to offer.  We appreciate how Steve listened to our requirements and came up with a very practical storage solution.”

In fact, we recently worked with OSU again to design more mobile shelving. This time with custom end panels that show off how successful the team has been over the years. Watch this short video to find out more about OSU’s equipment operations!

University of Arkansas

football gear stored in mobile shelvingLike many football teams, the University of Arkansas was running out of storage space. When they got the chance to remodel their equipment room, they wanted an area for storage, but also a space for repairing equipment. Mobile shelving was the best option, because without it, there’s no way the team would have been able to store everything they needed. Check out images of the room and the creatively designed end panels that feature the Razorback mascot.

University of Alabama

‘Bama is no slouch on the field. In fact, the Crimson Tide has won 15 national championship trophies – three in the past seven years! With so much success and history, it’s no wonder they use Spacesaver mobile shelving. Learn more about the team’s stored system here.

Contact Us to Learn More about Spacesaver Mobile Shelving

The great thing about Spacesaver mobile shelving is that you can customize it to meet your needs and budget. These storage systems are small, medium, gigantic…and everything in between.

To find out more about how you can get Spacesaver mobile shelving, give us a call at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message.


Help Solving Your Records and Information Management Problems

Did you know…?document management software

  • 15% of organizational revenue is spent on creation, management, and distribution of information
  • 60% of people’s time is spent working with information and records
  • 75% of records are still kept in paper form
  • 65% of worker’s time is spent looking for information

If your company is spending this much time and money managing records and information, it’s time for a better strategy. But knowing where to start can definitely be overwhelming.

Fortunately, that’s where we come in. The specialists at Southwest Solutions Group have decades of experience helping companies solve their problems with records and information management. And no matter if you’re just getting started with your RIM program or a seasoned professional looking for some new technologies, we’ve got you covered.

Links to Resources for RIM Help

Here are just a few of our available resources to help you with your records and information management strategies:

Get Help in Person at the ARMA Austin/San Antonio Annual Seminar

If you’re an ARMA member in Texas, you can also come see our IMS Division Director, Anna Stratton, as part of ARMA Austin/San Antonio’s Joint Annual Seminar February 20.

Her 1.5 hour presentation takes place in the afternoon sessions as part of the track designed for professionals getting started with their company’s RIM programs. The topic of the presentation is Presenting RIM to the Executive Team and covers strategic tools RIM professionals will need to develop a business case for an executive audience.

Techniques for Creating a Document Management System

With the proper techniques, your document management system will not just capture, store, and archive your documents; it will also make retrieval faster with indexing tools, export documents to other parties quickly, securely protect documents from unauthorized access, provide audit tracking, and much more to improve the workflow and productivity of your business without the piles of paper.

Our 10 Step Document Scanning Process

If you are wondering what happens when you outsource your document scanning project, then this is definitely for you. A handy infographic outlines the whole process from start to finish.

Why You Need a Records Retention Schedule

As part of your records management system, you should have a records retention schedule because it’s is a major part of regulatory compliance; sets policies in place to make certain that records are kept for the length of time that is legally and functionally required and that useless or inactive records are purged; and makes sure that staff members are regularly following record management and document destruction guidelines.

The ROI of Digitizing Paper Documents

There are several factors to consider when your office is transitioning from paper to digital documents. Return on investments definitely ranks at the top of the list. This article is designed to help you thinking through the best way of digitizing paper documents for your organization. Careful considerations to hard costs and soft costs along with planning which paper documents to convert and when to convert them can make the difference between success and failure.

Why Use RFID Technology for File Tracking

RFID technology allows the capture and collection of data without the need for human intervention, reducing human error that could prove disastrous when dealing with serial numbers or part numbers.

Didn’t Find the Resources You Need?

If you weren’t able to find the resources here that you need to solve your records and information management problems, don’t worry. We can still help you with our consulting services. Just send us a message or give us a call at 1-800-803-1083!


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