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Commercial projects

Nick Hayler, Technical Manager at Marshall-Tufflex explains what apprentices need to know about cable management solutions for office environments.

Offices can have complex data and power requirements so it is crucial to have a cable management solution that keeps cables contained and protected as well as providing access to the services where they are needed.

There are several ways that cable management can be approached on these commercial projects so it is important for those entering the trade to understand the role of each type of product.

There are two main types of cable management systems for offices; wall based and underfloor systems. The choice of solution will depend on a number of factors such as the layout of the office, construction of the building and needs of the office occupants.

Wall systems

Dado and skirting trunking is a common sight in offices and is fitted to the walls to route both power and data cables. These are most suitable in open plan spaces where the desks are located close to the walls. The trunking allows easy access to the electrical supply and data connections with sockets and ports easily integrated into the sections in any position and at varying heights.

Choosing the right solution can also help improve the office environment. A system with a curved profile, such as the Marshall-Tufflex Sterling Curve, not only provides a sleek and modern look but also helps keep the office clean. The rounded surface does not trap dust and it also discourages people from placing items on top of the trucking to prevent clutter.

Floor systems

The other main type of cable management solution for offices is floor-based systems. These are installed either within the surface, in the case of screed floors, or within the raised floor structure. These provide a simple solution for routing power and cabling across larger spaces where desks and work areas are not located close to walls, as well as in large meeting rooms and conference areas. With both types, the boxes can be located wherever it is needed to provide easy to access power and data connections.

For many office projects, meeting the needs of the business and building will require an approach that mixes different products into a complete solution. Also, where the structure of the building does not allow for the typical approach, such as a retrofit project without a raised floor, other solutions can be devised. For example, a ceiling based cable management system can be combined with products such as the PowerPoles from Marshall-Tufflex that offer practical and elegant solutions for the management of power, data and communication services to island workstations.

Cable management for offices is increasingly complex with the need for data, communication and power connections to be supplied to all areas of the building. For electrical apprentices, it’s essential to keep up-to date with the innovative solutions that leading suppliers like Marshall-Tufflex provide. Understanding all the options helps those in the industry to overcome any challenge and provide the best solution for their clients.

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