There is a lot to think about when it comes to re-furbishing your office space; whether its to increase productivity, to facilitate more effective team work, or to create a more inspiring environment to help individual creativity. Whatever the reason, it is important to identify your wants and needs based on your requirements both now and in the future.
Here are a few areas to get you thinking and to help you whilst planning an office refurbishment or relocation:
Create a Vision
Before making any premises decisions, you need to have a strategic plan as to where your business is going. Start by confirming exactly why you need a new or re-designed workplace and what you would like to get out of it.
Ask yourself questions such as:
• What are your growth plans?
• What turnover is forecasted for 5 years, for 10 years etc.?
• Will the building provide for the needs of the staff, and will it attract the quality of personnel your organisation needs when recruiting?
• How often will clients visit your premises?
Set a Realistic Budget
The budget for an office fit-out, relocation or refurbishment is likely to be one of the highest business spends you are likely to require. When setting your budget, consider the following:
• Occupancy Cost
• Rent or Stamp-duty
• Business Rates
• Service charges
• Building insurance
• Building Surveys including Fire and Environmental Assessments
• IT Equipment
• Business phone/broadband
• New office furniture
• Fee’s – Advisory, Commercial Property agent fees, legal, relocation fees
• Marketing costs – new stationary, web changes
• Training costs
• Staff communication
Involve your Staff
If you’re planning an office refurbishment, this will require input from every employee, Manager and Director. Asking what your staff think of their current office space, how it helps them to work, or how it hampers their productively could provide additional viewpoints which have not previously been considered. If your team feel they have had some input into the new office then they are more likely to buy into the process.
Assess where your staff spend most of their time, is it at their desks, in meeting rooms? Are kitchens used as informal meeting rooms? Do some areas appear very busy, whilst other spaces are barely used?
A Happy Workplace is a Productive Workplace
If your staff are happy, they are motivated and if they are motivated, they will be more productive and work more efficiently. Get the basics right – such as heat, light, ventilation, and water. Consider seating – provide comfortable seating and you will find that a pleasant environment is good for boosting happiness. Are teams able to work closely and is there sufficient space and quiet peace for those who need to avoid distractions? Boost employee morale by providing a little light relief, perhaps its table football, a TV and bean bags or a free drinks/snacks machine.
Sustainability isn’t just for new build offices. There’s plenty you can do within an existing space to make it more environmentally friendly:
• Make energy efficiency a key requirement of replacement lighting, heating or ventilation systems
• Install a wireless sub-metering system to closely monitor energy use
• Look at desktop energy reduction technology to save energy used by computers and peripherals
• Include recycling points in the design
• Maximise natural light through clever space planning
• Specify furniture, fixtures, fittings and flooring with a high content of recycled material
• Use paints low in toxicity
Apollo Interiors are specialists in the office fit-out and commercial refurbishment market. If you have a project coming up or are in the middle of planning an office refurbishment, we would love to hear from you.