Choosing a base for your business is a decision that shouldn't be taken lightly. Much like choosing where to live, you'll want to make sure you're happy, safe and comfortable in your new office environment - but you'll also want to know that this is a place where your business can thrive and grow. So what factors should you consider?
Before you begin, make a list of the things that are really important for the type of business you run. For example, if you need to be accessible to your clients, or travel a lot, access to public transport links or key road routes might be a high priority.
What factors that are considered when choosing a location would make a difference to how your business performs? These are your priorities.
You might run a start-up now or even a large corporate, either way it never hurts to think about the future. Will your new space be big enough to accommodate future growth, be it organic or through acquisitions? Or will you have to move again in six months' time?
It's also important to make sure the new office space will be convenient for any future members of staff. While driving may work for one, places without good public transport links might discourage others.
Consider your co-workers
In a co-working office, you'll need to consider the businesses you're sharing with to make sure they're a good fit for the type of environment you'd work best in.
Successful co-working means a cross flow of ideas and collaboration between businesses, so make sure you consider what sort of businesses are located in the building and whether they are similar or complimentary to yours.
It also often makes sense to share with companies that can support your business in some shape or form, for example if you are a freelancer it can be beneficial to your business if you locate alongside an accountant, lawyer, website developer or even a freelance marketing consultant, all of whom might be able to help your business grow.
A little research
Just as you'd research the local area before moving house, it's wise to do the same for your office. While you might have a busy work schedule, you won't want to spend the entire working day in your office, so making sure there are plenty of amenities such as cafes, restaurants or even a green space nearby can make a big difference.
It's also wise to check out the internet connectivity of an area using WiredScore, you do not want to move in and find the building or area is limited to a low speed internet.
It’s also worth checking if there will be any future transport changes or developments which may affect journey times to and from the office, for example The Elizabeth line will benefit certain locations when it opens in 2018. More importantly, you want to be able to feel your business and its equipment are secure when left in your office, as well as feeling safe working there yourself. Take into account those odd long days and sometimes evenings that require you to be in the office after hours.
The best way to find out first-hand what the area is like without actually moving in is to speak to the people who already work there. While it'll give you a handy insight into the local environment, it's also a great way to get to know your potential future neighbors.
Keep it consistent
You'll need to consider whether the look and location of the office space fits with your company's brand, too. For example, you wouldn't expect a fun, creative agency-style business to have a formal, corporate office space. Conversely, a very casual shared office might not present the right atmosphere for a company looking to offer professional services. It is good to have an idea of your preferred style, as this can narrow down the options much quicker.
Be aware of the costs
If you've not rented an office space before, make sure you plan out your finances fully. You need to understand what's included and what you'll be expected to pay for, as well as the costs of insurance should you need to organize that yourself. For example, some centers charge extra for meeting rooms, or internet and phone usage, while others offer a fully inclusive package.
Finding a new office space can sometimes feel like a daunting task, but that's where Workthere come in. Get in touch with us today for expert advice, as well as practical tips on how to make sure you move in to the best possible office for your business. Our local experts and easy to use website make searching for a new space simple.