Moving into a new office space can be both exciting and a little daunting. In order for your business to be successful and continue to grow, you will need an office space that’s right for you. But, how do you determine what your business needs and what it doesn’t need? Don’t worry. We complied a short list of important deciding factors you’ll need to consider when choosing a space for your business. Of course, we understand not all spaces are perfect, and you may have to compromise a little. But, once you know what kind of office space you’re looking for, you will have an easier time finding one that works for you.
The right location should be one of the biggest deciding factors in choosing an office space for your business. You want an easily accessible office building for both your employees and clients. First, you’ll want to determine what the commute looks like for your employees. Can they easily arrive at your building from any major highways or interstate? Will they have to drive through any high traffic or populated areas? A stressful or long morning commute can affect the productivity of your employees. The same applies for any prospective clients who spend a lot of time traveling to your office. You don’t want a client to arrive stressed from the drive. It’s important for your office space to be located in a convenient, visible area.
Next, you will want to take a look at the area surrounding your building. Is the neighborhood secure? Will employees feel safe leaving their cars in your parking lot for an extended period of time? Will they have trouble commuting to work? If you choose to rent or purchase an office space in an unsafe area due to a lower price, remember to consider how this could potentially affect your employees and clients.
What does your area have to offer in terms of restaurants and local stores? A good location will have a great surrounding neighborhood, as employees may want to enjoy their lunch break outside of the office. Or, you might find yourself taking a prospective client out for drinks after work. For these reasons, it’ll be advantageous for your building to be located in a trendy neighborhood with a lot of eating and shopping options.
Coupled with a convenient location, you will want to invest in a space with the right amount of room for your business. Will your space be large enough to accommodate your day to day operations? Do you have room to grow? Choosing a space big enough for your business and potential growth is paramount. If you’re considering renting a space, keep in mind most commercial leases last three to five years. You will want a space that will be able to meet your needs over the duration of the lease. You don’t want to spend the remainder of your time in an office space feeling cramped or limited.
You will want to consider the openness of your space. The open office layout has become more popular in the past years, as it promotes creativity and innovative practices. However, an open office space may affect your employees’ level of productivity. Or, your employees may prefer to work in a quiet, enclosed office. In which case, you may want to check the acoustics of the building along with the space. Does it echo when you talk? Do outside noises (i.e. traffic sounds) permeate throughout the office? These are factors you’ll have to consider.
You will also want your space to be aesthetically pleasing, as this helps create a productive work environment. Check with property manager to determine how much leniency you have with redesigning the space (ex. can you paint walls, hang pictures, etc.). You may want to factor in the cost of hiring an office interior designer.
What amenities does your office have? If you have a lot of employees, you’ll want to make sure they have access to convenient parking. You may want to look for an office space with a large parking lot. Does your office space have elevators? This will be especially important if you find an office space above ground floor. You want your office to be handicap accessible. Is there 24/hr access? Is the building secure? If your employees prefer to work late into the night, you will want to make sure they have around the clock access in a secure building.
Before deciding on an office space, note your “deal-breaker” amenities. What does your business absolutely need to run smoothly? If an office space can’t offer your business these amenities, you may have to look elsewhere.
Find a great space? You want to make sure it also comes with great management. Does the property manager promptly respond to your calls? Do they fix building problems within the day? To find out the reliability of your property manager, you may want to ask for a list of references. Or, you may want to take a look at other properties they manage. If those properties appear well maintained and the references come back positive, you may be in business.
You will also want to ask management how your office will be cleaned. Do they provide a janitorial service? Or do they expect you to foot the bill? You may not want to be responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of your building, at which point you’ll need to discuss this with the property manager. These are good questions to ask before you sign the lease.