One of the most important things to consider when setting up a business is one of the premises. Precisely where will this business actually be based? If it’s a particularly small business or one that’s purely online, then you may be working from home. But for the majority of business, it’s pretty likely that you’ll need a dedicated space for it. This applies in particular if you’re going to be employing many people. If you’re on your own, then you won’t need the space that a large team will. The type of space will vary wildly depending on what sort of business you will be running. Let’s face it; an IT consultant is not going to need the same space as an artisanal carpentry business.
That said, there are plenty of things that any business owner will need to consider when choosing an office space:
Location, location, location.
This might be the most important factor to consider when choosing a space for your business. No matter what kind of company it is, the location can be the thing that makes the difference between success and failure. When choosing a location, you need to ask yourself “can people get there without any hassle?” This applies not only to clients and customers but employees as well. If your customers have to struggle to reach you, then there’s a decent chance that they might decide it simply isn’t worth it. By the same token, your employees are going to be much more likely to resent their workplace if they have to fight through single lane roads and bumper to bumper traffic. This can be especially important if you’re working in a retail environment. So much of retail is based on customers coming across your business. If your business is tucked away where no one could find it, then it’s probably not going to succeed.
This will, of course, depend on what kind of business you have. There are also a lot of other factors that can influence the size of your premises as well. The price will obviously have a significant impact on what sort of size your space will need to be. But in the end, there will always be limits to what your space needs to achieve for your business. If your business involves large-scale logistics or stock, then it’s likely that you’ll need a warehouse to accommodate that. On the other hand, think about what size limitations you can get away with. If you need an office space for a small team, then you may be able to function in a relatively small space. This way you can save money without sacrificing the working ability of your business. At the same time, perhaps think about where your company might be in a few years time. Do you plan to grow your business significantly in that time? If so, does the site offer room for it to grow?
This goes beyond the previous point about being able to find the office itself. You need to consider whether or not your space will be accessible to anyone. Those with physical disabilities will obviously find an office with multiple floors much more difficult to navigate. If your space includes various floors, then you may need a vertical lift to allow for full access for everyone. The same goes for things like parking. You’ll need to have dedicated disabled parking spaces nearer to the building. Things like the doors and bathrooms are also important to consider. The best thing that you can do is to look at every aspect of the premises. Then try to consider is there’s anything that could prevent anyone from being able to properly access the entire area.
How’s the infrastructure?
Can you imagine trying to run your business without a fast, reliable internet connection? Unless your business is remarkably low-tech, chances are you’ll need the internet for it to function. You should make sure to find out if things like the internet are included in the properties rent. If not then you’ll need to budget for that specifically. This also applies to the maintenance of the internet, since the last thing you want is to deal with a service that refuses to work. You should make sure to test the speeds of the internet and even consider talking to other business owners in the area. That way you’ll be able to get a good sense of what the infrastructure is like for that site. Of course, infrastructure applies to more than just the internet. What are the phone and postal services like? Does the office have a postal address? These might seem like small questions, but they are one’s that you have to make sure that you’re asking before you choose a space.
What’s your style?
Once again this needs to be dictated by the business. Ask yourself, what image are you attempting to put out in your office space? Is your business pushing forward into the modern world of technology? Or is it something more traditional? Whatever it is, you’ve got to consider keeping your style consistent with your business. This not only helps to create a professional image but can affect the productivity of your employees. Don’t just imagine that you can fill a space with desks and that’s all you need. Look at various create office layouts to see ways in which businesses have used their space to create the best possible work environment.
The perfect office space doesn’t exist. If it did, you wouldn’t have so many things to consider before choosing one. The most important thing you can do is to pick the right space for your business and your employees. The last thing you want is to find yourself having to make concessions on the way in which your company is run based on the office that you’re in. Let the business dictate the space, not the other way around.