Automating Parts Storage for Transportation Maintenance

In April of this year, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced that with the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, America’s public transportation systems would be receiving a total of $25 billion in recovery funds. These funds are designed to help cover operating and related expenses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Entrusted with this funding, it’s important for cities to put the money to good use. And one area that’s worth the investment is the maintenance facilities.

Disorganized and inefficient parts storage hinders productivity, delays maintenance time, and drains a city’s finances. Equipped with extra resources thanks to the CARES Act, it’s a good time for public transportation systems to look at upgrading their maintenance parts storage.

vertical lift modules parts storage

Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) recently took this step, automating their maintenance parts storage by installing vertical lift modules and high-density shelving systems. These automated storage systems provide DART’s maintenance facility with improved space utilization, increased productivity, better employee safety, and higher security of materials. And since all of this amounts to more efficient operations and financial savings, the automated systems are definitely worth the investment.

Vertical Lift Modules

As part of upgrading their maintenance parts storage, DART had vertical lift modules, or VLMs, installed in their facility. VLMs enhance maintenance operations by providing automated parts storage in a compact footprint and making it easier for maintenance personnel to access the parts they need.

maintenance parts storage vlm

This automated storage and retrieval system consists of an enclosed, software-controlled system of vertically-arranged storage trays. These systems make use of overhead warehouse space and can save up to 85% of floor space compared with traditional storage methods. When an employee needs to retrieve a part, the mechanism removes the appropriate tray from its storage slot and delivers it to the access counter quickly and efficiently. The entire process requires minimal effort on the part of the worker.

 With their compact footprint, VLMs are ideal for facilities with limited floor space, freeing up room for productivity or extra stock. The system provides secure storage for parts, with access control options to ensure only authorized employees can access stored items. And by delivering the specified part directly to the worker, the VLM cuts down the time it takes to locate and retrieve parts, enabling faster and safer parts retrieval. This in turn results in shorter maintenance times and, since time is money, financial savings. Read more about vertical lift modules here.

High-Density Storage Systems

DART also chose to employ a high-density storage system to save space in their maintenance facility. High-density mobile storage consists of shelving units or pallet racks mounted on carriages that slide on floor tracks. The storage units compact together, eliminating all but a single movable access aisle.

high density storage system parts storage

The primary benefit of these compact systems is space savings. By converting your stationary shelving or pallet racks to a high-density system, you can nearly double your storage capacity in the same footprint, or free up almost 50% of the floor space for more productive activities.

The automated system also gives you the ability to control access to valuable materials, with PIN code or other access required to open an aisle to retrieve a specific part. Read more about high-density storage systems here.

Other Efficient Parts Storage Solutions

DART chose to upgrade their maintenance facility with VLMs and high-density storage systems, but these are not the only options for storing your parts more securely and efficiently.

mro parts storage solution industrial vending machines

You might consider investing in industrial vending machines, a popular solution for dispensing MRO tools and parts. These versatile machines efficiently store parts of various sizes and dispense the needed part when an authorized employee selects the desired item from a touchscreen console. The industrial vending machines track inventory levels and usage as well as allowing access only to the specified part and only by authorized users. This adds up to quicker, more accurate parts retrieval which in turn results in higher productivity and less maintenance delays.

Horizontal carousels are another automated storage and retrieval system well-suited for parts storage. A savvier solution for facilities with extensive storage needs and limited overhead space, these systems consist of hanging bins that rotate on a motorized overhead track. Thanks to software capabilities, the carousel rotates to bring the correct bin directly to the operator, as well as monitoring inventory and controlling access.

You can learn more about industrial vending machines, horizontal carousels, and the rest of our material handling solutions here.

Contact Us for Automated Parts Storage Solutions

Southwest Solutions Group® provides design and installation services for automated parts storage solutions to a variety of industries including public transportation. We will also provide you with a free consultation to determine your exact needs and specifications before the design process begins. To learn more or to speak with a specialist, call us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message today.

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How to Use High-Density Shelving to Motivate & Attract Talent

In the competitive world of college athletics, the quality of a school’s facilities serves to reflect the quality of the teams and the university as a whole. Successful athletic programs know that functional isn’t enough anymore; a facility’s appearance is crucial both for maintaining player morale and for attracting new talent.

compact athletic equipment storage graphic wraps

And this isn’t just true for the stadiums, fields, and gyms. This principle extends even to your equipment storage. That’s right—even your storage has the potential to make a lasting impression on recruits and players.

So how can you ensure that your equipment storage makes a quality impression? It all comes down to choosing the right storage system. And countless of the most prominent Division I programs have already achieved this by choosing high-density shelving.

Both functional and visually appealing, high-density shelving is the perfect solution for elite athletic departments in need of space-saving equipment storage. Not only can you efficiently store and organize high volumes of equipment in these compact storage systems, but you can also customize them with graphic wraps to create a memorable and quality impression.

Graphic Wraps Take Your Storage to the Next Level

In addition to efficient organization, high-density equipment storage gives you a blank canvas where you can showcase school pride. It’s an opportunity you can’t afford to pass up.

graphic wraps high density athletic storage

Graphic wraps allow you to customize your high-density storage with team colors, logos, mascots, and even full murals. Adding a graphic wrap to your equipment storage is an excellent way to set your facility apart and show that your athletic program is top-notch. After all, a high-quality program deserves high-quality storage facilities. Which means that when prospective recruits see your equipment room, they’ll be left with an appealing impression of the program.

But the morale of your current athletes is just as important as attracting new talent. An unexceptional, disorganized storage facility causes frustration that leads to lack of motivation, which is detrimental to a team’s success. But upgrading to high-density shelving with graphic wraps will foster school pride and boosts athletes’ morale every time they walk in to retrieve equipment. And no program can be successful without motivated athletes.

Of course, universities aren’t the only application that can benefit from high-density shelving with graphic wraps. Several high school athletic departments have set themselves apart with this state-of-the-art storage solution, and military facilities also benefit from organized equipment storage with graphics that boost soldiers’ morale.

The Functional Side of High-Density Shelving

While appearance is crucial to making a quality impression with equipment storage, function is no less important. Fortunately, high-density shelving isn’t just a pretty face. It’s also highly practical.

High-density shelving units are mounted on mobile carriages which compact to eliminate all but a single movable aisle. By cutting out fixed aisles, they can save up to 50% of your floor space. For facilities short on storage space, these savings are critical.

Operating the storage system is easy and intuitive, using ergonomic rotating handles that can move multiple carriages at a time with minimal effort. Powered options are available as well. Learn more about how high-density shelving works here.

secure high density military storage

You can also customize your system to meet your unique storage requirements, whether storing helmets, hanging uniforms, shoulder pads, or any other kind of gear. This allows for optimal organization, which makes it easier for staff and players to retrieve equipment. This compact, organized storage will also give your equipment room a neat and polished appearance.

And for applications like military where security is a top priority, high-density shelving systems come with the option of added security features including roll-down tambour doors and PIN or badge access with audit tracking. This way, you never have to worry about pilferage or damage to your stored equipment.

Images of High-Density Shelving with Graphic Wraps

Contact Us for High-Density Shelving

Southwest Solutions Group® provides design and installation services for high density storage systems for universities, military, and a range of other applications. We will also provide you with a free consultation to determine your needs and specifications before the design process begins. To learn more or to speak with a specialist, call us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message today.

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How to Use Rolling Cabinets for Collaborative Spaces in Open Office Settings

movable partition walls for office

Many thought open-plan workspaces would improve productivity and collaboration within the corporate world when first introduced back in the late 1990s. Over time, though, organizations have found the layout to do the opposite since employees produce and interact less. Today, experts name cost as a major reason why it still exists. However, a greater demand for privacy, lack of storage and an increase in visual and audible distractions have caused the trend to fade in recent years.  In its place, companies have started using a more novel alternative called rolling cabinets to create collaborative space in open office settings and give staff more structure, storage, and privacy. Who does this include? Businesses that give equal weight to function and aesthetics, so staff have the agile workspace and storage needed to thrive. 

In this article, we will discuss:

How rolling cabinets provide flexible rooms

room divider movable wall partitions collaborative space

With a growing number of professionals making up today’s mobile workforce, the corporate world has replaced traditional cubicles with more flexible workspace. Making the transition is easier than ever since storage experts have the power to mount cabinets on rails. Once in place, the rolling cabinets move along the tracks with a simple push to create collaborative conditions that fit your working style.

Whether alone or in a group, you can expand or compact the moveable partitions into as big or small of a footprint as needed to ensure personnel remains comfortable and focused on work.  The movable partitions allow you convenient access to essential tools used to facilitate teamwork, including whiteboards and monitors.

Learn how an architect firm used high-density movable partition walls to create a mobile conference area, so a software company could stay connected.

What is “Hot-desking?”

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Designing a flexible collaborative workspace isn’t all organizations can do through this creative usage of rolling cabinets, however.  It’s a good thing because the corporate world is only going to become more modernized in the future — especially with innovative concepts like “hot-desking” making such an impact on today’s work culture.

So, what is “hot-desking?” It gives employees the flexibility to choose where and when to work. You can spend part of the day at your workstation. Move to a conference room to collaborate with colleagues on in-progress projects, next. Then, relocate to a quiet lounge area and relax or connect on a more personal level over coffee. Staff remains active and motivated to work throughout the day while still carving out some time to socialize with others. Industry-insiders say organizations that adopt this approach can maximize space efficiency and minimize real estate risk by limiting useless office areas.

As the notion gains traction, many businesses have realized traditional desks can no longer meet the rising functional and aesthetic demands that exist. In response, experts have shifted focus to design more attractive furniture with the flexibility to serve more than one purpose.

How movable partitions can help display work

creative usage of rolling cabinets

Nowhere is displayed work more evident than in a design lab that uses rolling cabinets to create space for creative projects. In order to achieve this objective, you simply slide the cabinets on rails integrated to the floor.  It requires little physical effort and time during operation, making space reconfiguration easy and fast.

Leaving some distance between the movable partitions allows facilities efficient space to display work without expanding the footprint. Since the rolling cabinets allow rearrangement with a gentle push, users can customize areas to fit mobile furniture and create the most efficient display conditions.  Passersby have full visual access to works on display through an observation window and can view projects from the hallway. 

How cabinets on rails can provide secure storage

rolling office storage cabinet

You can integrate locks to ensure the rolling cabinets provide the reliable security needed to keep employees’ personal belongings safe. Pick from five standard options, including:

  • Locks that use an alphanumeric keypad or key slot via American Disability Act-compliant user key to regulate access and ensure discrete use in public spaces.
  • Numeric keypad locks that allow programming to accommodate temporary day or permanent use.
  • A combination locking system that allows you to regulate the access and maintain personal privacy through a user-chosen code. It also easily resets once you are finished, so another person can use the storage.
  • Hasp locks can accommodate any locking mechanism to keep stored contents protected during use and allow employees to have ready access when vacant.
  • Keyed locks allow you to have selective storage access using individual keys. Master keys are also available to help provide supervisors with immediate access to the entire locker bank.

Valuable items such as purses, wallets, cell phones, and tablets remain protected from theft and damage while in storage. Nothing takes up valuable counter or floor space either, helping keep shared workspaces clean and organized. Electronics remain easily accessible if needed but out of personal reach, helping eliminate unnecessary distractions. Personnel also have increased peace of mind about the safety of their possessions and can focus more on being productive.  Unfinished work remains intact while stored, so staff can pick up where they ended the day before and complete projects on time.  

Learn how mobile workstations can solve five common office complaints.

How cabinets on tracks slide together to make space for events

partition cabinet for office

The versatility open floor space plan offices have through the creative use of rolling cabinets extends beyond creating comfortable collaborative conditions and providing efficient theft protection. So, what else does the storage allow you to do? Instantly create space to host events without building onto your existing footprint, of course.

To ensure you have the capacity to accommodate larger crowds, simply push the movable partitions together and relocate them to one end of the room. It opens the space to maximize footprint efficiency while giving employees ample capacity to breathe and feel included during group activities. A few examples where you may need to reconfigure space to accommodate many people include:

  • Team building exercises
  • Company-wide staff meetings and student-body assemblies
  • Holiday parties

How moving cabinets help create a sense of privacy

rolling cabinets on rails

While wearing headphones can help drown out noise, employees working in open-office environments remain exposed to everything going on around them. Too much exposure to others can increase our individual desire to spend time alone and regroup in private. Finding personal space to think isn’t always easy, though — especially if your organization lacks quiet areas.

Fortunately, employees can use the rolling cabinets to create their own sense of privacy. Simply position the movable partitions anywhere along the rails to break up space and create more intimate work areas. It gives you a flexible boundary that can block out unwanted noise in an instant. So, employees have personal space to concentrate on being productive and can avoid falling behind.

See how to use foldable mobile privacy wall partitions to create secluded meeting space.

Contact Us About Rolling Cabinets

Southwest Solutions Group® provides design and installation services for rolling cabinets. For more information about our office products and services, call us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message today.

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Increase Your Bed Count With Temporary Hospital Beds

temporary hospital beds quick ship

With the COVID-19 global health crisis in full swing, experts expect the demand on hospital beds to peak shortly. Fortunately, storage specialists stand ready to help you increase your bed count with temporary hospital beds. Along with allowing affordable and convenient reuse, units ship fast. So, institutions can have the essential capacity to accommodate the impending patient surge. With little time to spare before the anticipated spike, this article will discuss:

What does it cost to rent the temporary hospital beds?

Find COVID-19 temporary hospital beds online

Institutions looking to increase their COVID-19 patient bed count with these temporary hospital beds have the cost-effective option to rent or buy. However, anyone choosing to rent should consider the parameters involved. For instance, availability and leasing costs depend on the size of your order. To qualify, healthcare facilities must request a minimum of 15 hospital bed rentals. Leasing periods have to run for at least three months with you committing to pay $200 per month. Rental rates do not include a separate $500 delivery fee. However, you may receive reimbursement from the federal government to increase the bed count, if renting rather than buying.

Learn how COVID-19 emergency response workstations can help hospitals maintain efficient productivity while practicing safe social distancing.

How long does it take to ship and assemble this hospital bed rental?

COVID-19 emergency ward cot rentals

This hospital bed rental ships in two to five days, allowing you to quickly increase your bed count in accordance with the government mandate. Since the shipping process doesn’t take long, staff have sufficient time to assemble units ahead of the expected COVID-19 patient surge. Using a rubber mallet, installation should only take you eight to 10 minutes.

Along with a hospital-grade fiber leak and moisture-proof mattress, configurations have Velcro kits to help simplify attaching the mattress to the frame. The durable steel-made units also feature four seismic plates to facilitate floor anchoring, convenient storage space, and support capacity up to 700 lbs.

Incorporated decking will depend on availability, but the two options to choose from include:

  • Wire decking: typically is self-cleaning and provides maximum storage flexibility
  • Alternative melamine decking: often easy to clean and has superior chemical, scratch, and stain resistance

How can you reuse the hospital beds?

Through conversion, you have the flexibility to reuse the temporary hospital beds as storage once the COVID-19 pandemic ends. Simply add extra shelves and vertical uprights to your existing beams to change the affordable units into reusable shelving. Not only does this help increase the equipment’s lifespan but it also allows facilities to maximize their investment.

Find out how quick ship isolation rooms help medical facilities during COVID-19 flatten the curve.

Contact Us for Temporary Hospital Beds

Southwest Solutions Group® provides quick ship COVID-19 temporary hospital beds to healthcare facilities seeking compliance with the government mandate. We will also provide you with a free consultation to determine your exact needs and specifications before the design process begins. For more information or to speak with a healthcare specialist, call us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message.

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Emergency response workstations: the COVID-19 workplace

emergency response workstations COVID-19

With COVID-19 causing worldwide concern, many organizations have adopted a more flexible attitude toward work and are allowing employees to telecommute from home. Along with helping promote safe social distancing, the transition remains vital to flattening the curve. However, it has corporations questioning how to balance the new “norm” and maintain efficient productivity. Well, leading storage experts have the answer. Using flexible emergency response workstations can help hospitals and offices in preparing for the COVID-19 work setting. No one knows how long the pandemic will last, but companies must have the capacity to function now and later. The future health of our nation’s economy depends on it. Therefore, this article will discuss:

How can emergency response workstations help you remain productive at a safe social distance?

Creating conditions to suit your hospital or office workflow needs and maintaining safe social distance is easy since the systems have 850-lb ball bearing casters included in the design. Adapted to wheels, the stand-alone furniture has the mobile flexibility to accommodate the six-feet separation rule. Simply abut, turn, or place units however you desire to provide the most comfortable degree of separation. Alternatively, you can easily and quickly reposition the solutions to allow healthy and productive interaction between colleagues sitting a safe social distance apart. Considering how much government officials stress proper practice, it’s only natural that businesses would need a solution to enforce it. Why not use emergency response workstations? Unlike traditional alternatives, units are easier to clean behind. They also have the necessary versatility, making them better suited to help you adjust to the new normal and maintain efficient operations when preparing for the COVID-19 work setting.

How much time does it take to install and relocate this workstation on wheels for hospitals?

workstation on wheels hospital

Internal personnel can install and relocate this versatile workstation on wheels for hospitals in minutes since it doesn’t require tools and comes assembled. Since existing staff can set up the systems, facilities avoid paying outside service crews to handle the job.  Along with helping to ensure affordability, it keeps staff numbers down. So, fewer people risk potential exposure to the virus and hospitals can remain focused on preparing for the COVID-19 work setting.

How will the workstations impact real estate?

So how much can you expect to spend when preparing for the COVID-19 work environment? It depends on what emergency response workstations you choose to use in your hospital or office space. The impact the systems have on real estate will also depend on several factors, including:

  • If you plan to re-carpet, paint, and expand
  • Will you need to reposition units to accommodate collaboration?
  • Do you expect to grow over the years?
  • Does your company prefer in-house personnel to handle the installation or use an outside contractor?

Use this example as a guide to help determine how much of a return on investment you can expect:

To start, these emergency response workstations can run you $24,000 plus freight. That’s far more than the initial $14,000 for traditional alternatives. However, that changes once factoring in things like employee churn time, real estate, and resale value. While taking these figures into account over a 60 month period, you could save 11.8% or more depending on the figures.

Find out how mobile workstations can help solve five common office complaints.

Contact Us for Emergency Response Workstations

Southwest Solutions Group® provides emergency response workstations to hospitals and offices. We will also provide you with a free consultation to determine your exact needs and specifications before the design process begins. For more information or to speak with a healthcare specialist, call us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message.

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Emergency Response Lab Furnishings Ready to Ship for COVID-19 Testing

As the COVID-19 health pandemic continues to spread, our team at Southwest Solutions Group is stepping up to provide emergency response lab furnishings to our clients in the healthcare and medical space as rapidly and as urgently as possible. As emergency response equipment suppliers with 50 years of experience, we are well-positioned to meet this challenge.

Emergency Response Lab FurnishingsWhile laboratories move quickly to ramp up their COVID-19 testing and validation processes, hospitals and medical centers are working at a record-breaking pace to set up proper testing facilities. These temporary testing facilities must not only comply with government regulations, but they must also allow for efficient and streamlined testing processes.

Emergency response lab furnishings
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Such COVID-19 testing facilities and their workflows must allow for the highest number of people to be tested in the smallest amount of space possible. Otherwise, long lines and logjams will backup and delay the intake, testing, and processing cycle. As such, expediency isn’t just a nice-to-have feature but a potentially life-saving capability.

Introducing our Emergency Response Lab Furnishings Program

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Find our stainless products online

Southwest Solutions Group recognizes the unprecedented urgency of this situation and has readied its Emergency Response Lab Furnishings Program to prepare and ship equipment as quickly as possible. Our modular clinical workstations and furnishings are designed for fast installation in natural disasters and emergencies. This emergency response equipment includes:

  • Rapid Response Medical Carts — Our carts enable healthcare workers to quickly store and retrieve an array of testing equipment and supplies. Specifically, our four-drawer cart with key-lock features 24″ of vertical drawer space, so it holds a large number of medical supplies. Built with ball-bearing casters, drawers open and close with ease for fast access to the supplies inside. The already-installed wheeled cart with side-bar handles includes braking capabilities, so it can stop on a dime and won’t roll away.

  • Lab Casework — Our emergency response lab furnishings are designed to fit precisely into your space. These modular, rapid-set up Lab Casework can be converted or re-configured with minimal effort for field use in a short timeframe.

  • Emergency response lab furnishingsLab Cabinets — Durable and long-lasting yet highly configurable, these metalload-bearing cabinets can be set up to fit field COVID-19 testing and processing facilities quickly. The cabinetry systems are interchangeable so that they can set up and work efficiently with one another. Despite their flexibility, the emergency response lab furnishings are heavy-duty and compliant with UFC, OSHA, and NFPA requirements.

  • Emergency Response Lab FurnishingsLab Tables — Our sturdy yet adjustable stainless-steel lab tables are designed for rapid deployment and setup. Bolted adjustment capabilities mean the lab tables can be lowered or raised accordingly and will snuggly stay in place once set. Available with and without wheels, these lab tables can be fitted with sturdy and balanced shelving uprights that won’t tip over.

  • Work Surfaces — We also offer customizable work surfaces suitable for setting up emergency lab stations such as Corona-19. These work surfaces, which are comprised of impact-resistant, epoxy resin and phenolic materials, can be rapidly special ordered to meet the size and space requirements of your field laboratory or testing facility.

  • Shelving Systems — Our stainless-steel shelving systems are entirely adjustable and reinforced so that they can hold up to 800 pounds for 36″- 54″ long shelves and up to 600 pounds for 60″-72″ long shelves. Shelving units, which come with all assembly hardware and fasteners, have fixed or wheeled options.

  • Emergency Response Lab FurnishingsFume Hoods — Our state-of-the-art, low-static fume hoods come with a deep clear interior for comfortable use by the lab technician. They allow easy conversion from VAV to CAV and are trusted for safe operation up to 60 fpm.

  • Faucets and valves — In addition to providing large emergency response lab furnishings, we also sell small-scale accessories such as faucets and valves. Choose from deck-mounted or floor-mounted faucets with four-arm or blade handles. Our faucets and self-contained valves are made of chrome-plated brass to withstand extensive use. The faucets have 8″ swivel gooseneck-styled spouts for easy access. 

  • Eyewash stations — Because the safety of your technicians remains a high priority during emergency situations, we provide rapid response eyewash stations that are field-ready. These free-standing, handle-pull units offer excellent security and protection even in quick install circumstances.

  • Sinks — As part of our emergency response lab furnishings, we offer both stainless steel and chemical-resistant epoxy sinks. The metal sinks come with a non-porous finish with coated undersides. The black epoxy sinks can withstand chemical disposal without being damaged. The center drain unit, strainer, and tailpiece are all included.

  • Lab Seating — Though ordering lab chairs may not seem like a top priority when setting up emergency testing facilities, technicians in these settings will work best when they are sitting in ergonomically sound chairs. Comfortable and highly functional, our adjustable lab chairs come in a range of styles and seatbacks. They sit on wheeled and adjustable, five-pronged stands for maximum balance and sturdiness.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to grow, testing large swathes of the population will be a crucial step to containing the disease and “flattening the curve.” Medical and healthcare facilities looking to scale their testing capabilities in the most efficient way possible will benefit from these rapid setup emergency response lab furnishings.

Contact Us for Emergency Response Lab Furnishings

Southwest Solutions Group® provides emergency response lab furnishings ready to ship for the COVID-19 pandemic. We have a dedicated staff standing by to help clients who are setting up their COVID-19 response today. Call us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message today.

 

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How Quick Ship Isolation Rooms Help Medical Facilities During COVID-19

quick ship isolation rooms

Without a vaccine to cure patients living with the coronavirus, hospitals have no choice but to quarantine anyone who tests positive. It’s proving harder than expected, considering how fast the infection can spread. In many cases, facilities lack the capacity and resources to accommodate everyone. That could change with what you find in this article. It explains how quick ship isolation rooms help medical facilities during COVID-19 flatten the curve. The blog also provides answers to the questions included below. 

What are quick ship isolation rooms?

Quick ship isolation rooms keep hospital patients with airborne infections separate from others to prevent cross-contamination and spreading risks. Quick and easy to install, the pre-engineered systems provide a clean-build alternative to traditional construction and allow flexible reconfiguration. The solutions also require little cutting or assembly, helping reduce contamination and ensure institutions working to eliminate an acute respiratory illness and remain Class IV ICRA guideline compliant. Alternative phrases used to describe the spaces range from negative pressure isolation rooms and portable isolation rooms to airborne infection isolation rooms.

Why are airborne infection isolation rooms vital?

airborne infection isolation rooms

Along with providing the best airborne infection protection, the systems remain easy to clean and versatile in design. It’s simple to expand, relocate, reuse, and can adapt to accommodate changes in demand. Units also have Center for Disease Control (CDC) approval, making them ideal to help medical facilities during COVID-19 contain the infection and flatten the curve. Essentially, healthcare applications can use the solutions as an effective precautionary measure when treating infected patients to avoid risking anyone’s health and safety or violating strict CDC standards. With the knowledge that there have been 250,000 and rapidly growing cases in the United States alone, it remains vital that hospitals have efficient access to airborne infection isolation rooms for the elimination of the pandemic.

Where are portable isolation rooms used?

portable isolation rooms COVID-19

While often used in the healthcare industry, these portable isolation rooms can help more than medical facilities during COVID-19. Other applications that would benefit from use on a temporary, semi-permanent, or permanent basis include:

  • Medical suppliers that provide essential personal protection equipment such as gloves, N95 masks, sanitizers, and ventilators
  • Personal care corporations with on-site manufacturing and distribution

Quick ship isolation room design considerations

COVID-19 isolation rooms quick ship

To ensure the quick ship isolation rooms help medical facilities during COVID-19 meet specific requirements, you must think about integrating ventilation to maintain ≥12 ACH and doors to regulate access. Hospitals can opt to have multiple style windows integrated into the quick ship isolation rooms. The systems can also accommodate two different wall styles. Configurations up to 12’ or 17’ utilize:

  • Easy-to-clean, non-combustible wall panels made from durable aluminum that provides superior sound control
  • Up to four heavy-duty hospital-grade door styles to seal off the restricted areas, including:
  1. Anti-microbial has the potential to reduce the environmental impact of cleaning and facility maintenance costs while preventing viruses from spreading. It’s more suited to use in healthcare applications, especially hospitals caring for patients with weakened immune systems.
  2. Stainless with the stain and rust resistance necessary to maintain a clean look through years of heavy use.
  3. Impact options provide 24-hour protection against non-essential personnel and visitors while reducing outside noise.
  4. Sliding alternatives can improve energy efficiency and allow ventilation while making your space more functional.
  • Beveled or flush widows eliminate hard-to-clean edges that collect dust particles to simplify sanitation. Often made from glass, beveled windows are versatile and great for helping you maintain privacy. Flush-style windows typically have sleeker lines, helping to add pleasing aesthetics to your space.
  • Central or point-of-use HEPA fan filters that allow existing system integration and can remove particles 0.3 um in diameter for supply (incoming) air.

Contact Us for Quick Ship Isolation Rooms

Southwest Solutions Group® provides quick ship isolation rooms to hospitals, medical suppliers, and personal care corporations. We will also provide you with a free consultation to determine your exact needs and specifications before the design process begins. For more information or to speak with a healthcare specialist, call us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message.

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Your Guide to Stainless Steel Medical Cabinets

stainless steel surgical cabinets

When compared to alternatives, stainless steel medical cabinets deliver the best protection against bacteria that can live on equipment surfaces. It’s one reason why hospitals, urgent care centers, and surgical suites aim to incorporate the design into their facility space. With so many stainless steel cabinetry options out on the market, choosing the right one to address your hospital, medical, operating room, and surgical storage needs isn’t easy. To help simplify the selection process, we put together this guide to stainless steel medical cabinets. It examines the available options and why each are used. Plus, we provide examples of places you most often find these cabinets and highlight the advantages for use.

What are Stainless Steel Medical Cabinets?

Stainless steel medical cabinets provide an easy-to-sterilize, eco-friendly storage solution that can adapt to your changing needs. Systems allow simple installation and can accommodate relocation during a facility expansion, renovation, or move. Other terms to describe these solutions range from operating room storage and surgical cabinets to a hospital storage cabinet.

Why is stainless steel used for medical equipment?

operating room storage cabinets

Along with providing better infection control, stainless steel remains more durable and versatile in design. These qualities add to the many reasons why it’s so widely used to construct medical equipment. The attraction doesn’t end there, however. Medical-field professionals also prefer the rustproof material because it does not stain and can tolerate repeated cleaning with harsh chemicals to maximize reuse. Additionally, non-magnetic stainless steel can stand up to corrosion and heat better. It’s quite diverse as well and can help commercial healthcare applications improve workflow while reducing raw materials costs.

Where are stainless steel medical cabinets used?

surgical instrument storage cabinets

Stainless steel cabinetry remains popular with healthcare applications that emphasize cleanliness, sound formability, manufacturing precision, reliability, strength and more. Some common areas to find these solutions include:

  • Catheterization labs
  • Endoscopy and radiology departments
  • Sterile processing departments
  • Surgical suites
  • Surgical supply, instrument, and device storage areas
  • Laboratories
  • Veterinarian clinics

Different types of stainless steel medical cabinets

This guide to stainless steel medical cabinets highlights many configurations to suit your application needs, including:

Freestanding cabinets with glass doors and sloped tops

Find freestanding cabinets with glass doors and sloped tops online

A freestanding hospital storage cabinet with glass doors, sloped tops, and adjustable shelves provides flexible storage that promotes cleanliness and visibility. With a clear view of the contents, staff can verify items without handling a thing. So everything remains protected from possible contamination and ready to use in a crisis. When checking inventory, personnel can also easily recognize dates through the glass doors. Then, open them using a wire pull handle to retrieve anything nearing expiration and avoid wasting it. Facilities, in turn, keep material rotating and get the most from their investment while delivering safe and efficient patient care.

Since configurations have the strength to stand alone, you can place them against a wall to save space or in the middle of the floor. Choosing to do the latter would allow you to optimize your existing footprint while creating a cozier, more inviting space. Personnel can roam through the area without feeling congested and facilities avoid wasting premium space.

The flexibility you have to maximize the available space carries through to the interior since these freestanding casework units have adjustable shelves. With a simple shelf modification, you can customize the space to ensure maximum footprint efficiency. Coupled with a durable stainless finish, systems are ideal to use in sanitary and heavy-duty applications such as:

Recessed cabinets with pass-thru glass front and solid doors in the back

Find recessed cabinets with pass-thru glass front and solid doors in the back online

Recessed cabinets with pass-thru glass front and solid doors in the back mount to the wall to save floor space and have a built-in flush finish that provides clean, pleasing aesthetics. Configurations also include wall trim to help conceal gaps along the sides and top and add a more decorative, personalized touch to your veterinary clinic or cleanroom. If you want to ensure the safety of your stored materials, you have the option to add theft protection locks, too. However, pass-thru cabinets provide storage access from in and outside the operating room to simplify supply restocking without violating sterile areas.

Recessed cabinets have adjustable shelves that you adapt to maximize space and sterilize with the harshest cleaning solutions to prevent bacteria growth. Their tempered safety glass doors provide visibility and resist scratches so storage maintains a clean look while ensuring safe, error-free material handling and retrieval.

Some models have piano-type hinged doors that withstand wear and tear while remaining easy to install and align, helping ensure smooth and safe operation. Others use hinges that allow doors to open a full 270 degrees to ensure ergonomic access. They include a self-closing feature that activates at less than 5 degrees from an open position to keep the door shut and ensure personnel always has sterile storage to use. The same units also fit sliding doors as an alternative which can provide convenient space savings and a clean look without sacrificing your accessibility to sterile items.

Drawer cabinets with a lighted workspace

Find drawer cabinets with a lighted workspace online

Drawer cabinets with a lighted workspace and magnetic bulletin boards provide a convenient workstation that you can use to remain productive in the operating room. With built-in overhead lighting, they allow specialized use in procedure areas that have low electronic leakage which does not interfere with other electronic systems. The light fixture illuminates the desktop underneath so surgeons working on laptops can see to update patient pre- and post-operation progress, plus review health history. A magnetic bulletin board contains six magnets with the strength to secure notes, so the workspace can remain clean and organized during emergency surgery.

Rather than shelves, configurations incorporate easy-to-sterilize drawers that glide on ball-bearing slides to ensure smooth use. To ensure the sterilization process remains simple but effective, the drawers’ handles have a solid stainless open design. You have the option to add locks if concerned about material theft and tampering prevention. Systems allow modular assembly and include anchoring holes and connectors to ensure proper alignment when installing more than one. Wall surface or recessed-style mounting models are available to help maximize your floor space.

Mobile cabinets with glass doors

Find mobile cabinets with glass doors online

Mobile cabinets with glass doors combine visibility and flexible relocation into one solution to simplify saving space and ensure safer, more efficient material handling. Units have non-marking rubber casters that provide a greater grip, better traction, and a softer ride over rough surfaces. With good wear and abrasion resistance, the wheels won’t damage hospital floors as you move shared supplies from one area to another.

Along with providing efficient visibility, the mobile cabinets’ glass doors allow lock integration to help regulate access and maintain sterile storage conditions. Interior adjustable shelves can accommodate changes in height to maximize space use and prevent material damage. Thus, you avoid wasting valuable storage while creating clearance to protect consolidated materials during space-saving relocation. Systems’ doors utilize self-lubricating stainless piano-style hinges tested to last up to 750,000 cycles and provide noise-free use.

Benefits to different-style stainless steel cabinets

To conclude this guide to stainless steel medical cabinets, this section explains the benefits of using the different styles available.

Freestanding vs. Recessed

hospital storage cabinet

Freestanding hospital storage cabinets stand alone in the middle of the floor or against the wall to save space. Placing units in the middle of the floor gives you an instant divider to help optimize your existing footprint while allowing areas to remain open and welcoming. You always have the flexibility to reposition the cabinets since they aren’t fixed to the floor or wall, simplifying space redesign.

Recessed stainless surgical cabinets allow clean installation into the wall to provide space-saving storage with a built-in flush finish look that enhances aesthetics. The cabinets also integrate well into spaces with contemporary and traditional design schemes.

Pass-Thru vs. Non-Pass-Thru

surgical cabinets

Pass-thru operating room storage cabinets mount into the wall to save space while remaining accessible from both sides to simplify restocking and maintain cleanliness within sterile areas. They often utilize hinged-type glass doors and are great for storing things like catheters and sterile scopes.

Non-pass through surgical cabinets can also provide you with the same benefits, except restocking happens after procedures finish.

Flexibility of mobile

stainless steel medical cabinet

A stainless steel medical cabinet with mobile flexibility allows you to efficiently relocate supplies to wherever needed and save space. Often, they have swivel casters that allow maneuverability to simplify steering the carts around tight corners. You can quickly change direction in an emergency since the wheels rotate 360-degrees. 

Contact Us for Stainless Steel Medical Cabinets

Southwest Solutions Group® provides stainless steel medical cabinets to hospitals and facilities beyond the ones in this guide. We will also provide you with a free consultation to determine your exact needs and specifications before the design process begins. For more information or to speak with a healthcare specialist, call us at 1-800-803-1083 or send us a message.

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Employee Highlights: Meet the SSG Team All-Stars

Recently, Southwest Solutions Group passed a major milestone—50 years in business! In this post, we’re going to take a moment to highlight some of the game changers, team players, and overall great people who have been with us the longest.

Bruce Delp, Sales Representative

Years of service: 15

What is the most meaningful part of your job?

When I have created, or when a client and I have worked together to create the right solution for their challenges and problem. Our solutions-oriented client relationships are very strong, and they know they’re getting the best system at the right price.

When do you have the most fun at work?

Creating solutions for clients and projects. Working with other SSG team members to bring about the solutions needed. Building relationships with clients that lead to friendships as well.

How would you describe Southwest Solutions Group in 5 words?

Innovative, Driven, Passionate, Focused, Searching.

What three words would you use to describe your role?

Listener, Problem Solver, Farmer and/or Hunter.

Who would you cast to play you in a movie about your life?

John Goodman (but I’m probably way too boring for him).


Jo Atwood, Marketing Assistant

Years of service: 17

What is the most meaningful part of your job?

Making my co-workers smile, making and keeping my customers happy and doing all I can to make day to day life at the office easier for the execs. But most of all, doing my best to live up to the work ethic taught to me by example by my hero, my daddy.

When do you have the most fun at work?

When I am organizing an event/meeting. My absolute favorite thing to do!

How would you describe SSG in 5 words?

A family of team members

How do you define success?

Being happy with what I do, knowing that I make a difference. Knowing that I do the very best that I can.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned in the last 5 years?

That change isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Change can mean new opportunities, new things to learn and excel at, and new people to meet. What’s not to like about that?


Court Stalnaker, IT Project Manager

Years of service: 18

When do you have the most fun at work?

Working with customers that are engaged.

How would you describe SSG in 5 words?

“Embraces innovation without fear of failure.”

What’s something you learned last week?

That the speed limit in Wyoming is 80 mph.

How do you define success?

Completing projects with integrity.

What is your motto or personal mantra?

Problems are just opportunities!


Benny DeGeorge, Sales Representative

Years of service: 21

What is the most meaningful part of your job?

Designing and analyzing.

When do you have the most fun at work?

Solving a problem for the client!

What’s your least favorite chore?

Emptying the dishwasher.

How would you describe your job to a child?

I cram a whole bunch of toys in a Roly Poly!

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned in the past 5 years?

Change and be one step in front of others.


Chester Pannell, Installer

Years of service: 16

What is the most meaningful part of your job?

The smile at the end of a project.

How would you describe SSG in 5 words?

Opportunity, success, value, accomplishment, growth.

What has been your favorite project at SSG?

The next one!

What are your biggest professional challenges?

Keeping up with technology.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned in the past 5 years?

Change will happen.


Lori Channel, Accounts Receivable

Years of service: 19

If you won the lottery, what’s the first thing you would do?

Tell no one!

How would you describe your job to a child?

I play with numbers.

What is your motto or personal mantra?

Do it right the first time to get more done!

What does true leadership mean to you?

A true leader has the confidence to stand up for what’s right and the courage to make tough decisions rather than popular ones. He/she creates more leaders instead of followers. A true leader creates a positive environment, resolves conflict, and encourages comradery.

Would you rather fight 50 tiny alligators or one giant horse?

Can I take 50 rubber bands to the fight?


Art Drouin, Sales Representative

Years of service: 15

How would you describe SSG in 5 words?

Efficient Space Management for Stuff

What would be the title of your autobiography?

No Sweat

Who would you cast to play you in a movie about your life?

George Clooney.

What does true leadership mean to you?

The ability to recognize when you can make a difference and doing it.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned in the past 5 years?

That I am not always right.


Heidi Clark, Project Planning Manager

Years of service: 22

What is one way SSG has changed over the years?

We’ve become more diversified, which has solidified our place in our market. Change is necessary to create and maintain that foothold.

What is your proudest accomplishment at SSG?

Growing the planning department into the group of professionals it is today.  We have evolved a great deal over the years.

What has been your favorite project at SSG?

We were tossed these huge nomenclature lists of weapons and after many hours of weapons research, I figured out how to store weapons and optics, and we sold thousands of weapon storage racks over the next couple of years.

What does a typical day look like for you?

Something like this:

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten?

Sea urchin.  I was with two others on the planning team for lunch. Undoubtedly the weirdest and the worst thing I’ve ever eaten.

Join the SSG Team

We’re immensely grateful to everyone who works at Southwest Solutions Group and keeps us at the top of our game. Interested in joining the team? Check out our careers page on Linkedin!

Stay tuned for more employee highlights!

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After 50 Years in Business, How Do We Measure Growth?

Our 50 Year Anniversary

This month, our team at Southwest Solutions Group is taking some extra time to reflect on our business, its impact, and how we can continue to improve into the future. Now that we’ve been in business for 50 years, we must be doing something right; and we have our customers and dedicated employees to thank for our success.

This was taken in 1987…your humble blogger (me) wasn’t even born yet.

Since we serve so many different industries, keeping up with changing business trends is a challenging but necessary priority. When we started as a small company in 1969 in Dallas, TX, businesses were still using file cabinets to store all of their paper records. We still have file cabinets, of course…but now we can supply our customers with the most innovative products and technology that allows them to take full advantage of their available resources. Our goals, however, are still the same: To make all aspects of your business more efficient while providing quality, personalized service.

A Timeline of Success

Since we’ve been in business for so long, we’ve gone through a lot of changes. If you’re curious about our development, here’s a handy visual representation of how we’ve evolved over the years:

Southwest Solutions Group timeline

RISE Up!

ssg dallas office
Southwest Solutions Group’s office in Dallas, Texas!

So how do we measure our growth and improvement as our business progresses? We aim to base our practices on the acronym R.I.S.E:

Respect: Quality customer service starts with employees who feel appreciated, knowledgable, and empowered. We recognize the talents and skills of each individual on our team and encourage everyone to continuously learn and hone these skills so we can always be on top of our game – and enjoy doing it!

Innovation: Though we have multiple offices across the nation, we know the importance of consistent goals and collaboration to ensure we are always at the forefront of innovative and creative solutions for every business. We recognize that it’s impossible to know everything because there’s always more learning to do.

Service: Any company’s dedication to conducting its business with fairness, trustworthiness, and honesty translates to how it treats its customers. We facilitate constant communication between our employees and customers, always aiming for 100% satisfaction throughout the development, fulfillment, and implementation process as well as any challenges that come up along the way.

Excellence: We believe in making every individual’s experience with Southwest Solutions Group a positive one no matter what. Whether you’re a new or existing customer, distributor, or prospective client, we strive to surpass established quality standards because you deserve nothing but the best.

If You’re Reading This…

Then we want to say THANK YOU for being part of what makes Southwest Solutions Group great! We can’t wait to see what the future will bring.

We also love feedback! Let us know how we’re doing and stay up to date on new products, tips, and events from Southwest Solutions Group on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Youtube.

Here’s to 50 more years!

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