In our course of work in advising businesses on their choice of office space, one of the most often asked questions is : How much space is really needed for my office?
Before embarking on the search for their ideal office space, most businesses often miscalculate or even overestimate ( which is much often the case ) the space that is really necessary for their normal day to day business operations.
Before we start the search for our clients, the below questions or factors are the ones that will often determine a close estimate of the amount of space each business require.
- Nature of business : Are you a legal or manpower recruitment firm? Or a fledging tech start -up. Due to regulatory requirements, typically Legal, manpower or even travel agency businesses will require maximum privacy and confidentiality where bulk of their operations can be conducted in their own private office suites. Tech startups or other types of businesses can opt for co-working desks, as this option helps to save space and costs too.
- Stage of business : Have you just started up with 1 or 2 persons operations? Or 3 to 4 expanding to 6 or 7 persons? Maybe perhaps already having a more than 30 persons team. In recent years, due to changes in technology , most businesses have drastically downsized their manpower needs , translating to huge reductions in physical space requirements. It may no longer make sense for a team of less than 10 persons to lease a conventional office dedicated for their own use.
- Is your business expanding fast ? : If your business is expanding fast, the best option to secure a property with a provider or landlord that allows certain flexibility, inclusive of upgrading to bigger spaces once you need to. Try adopting different workspace strategies that allow you to secure a core space with flexible options, or a hybrid combination that contains both fixed and flexible features of an office space lease. This will allow your team to scale up or downside effectively accordingly to the growth of your business.
- Seating arrangement: Depending on each team member’s job nature and job scope, each size requirement may differ. Typically workspace for one person starts from around 50 to 60 square feet. A software engineer or financial analyst may require more space for his or her extra inventory. A senior management member or CEO will definitely require more space most of the time. Many new workspaces has began to incorporate hot desk concept in their new set-up , instead of fixed seating for every member of their staff as this has helped to remove excess space.
- Ancillary space: Is there any other type of facilities that your team need in your office ? For example, meeting rooms, board rooms, break out areas, pantry, lounge etc. Is it a must that you need to incorporate the above inside your own space? Some of these space may no longer be relevant in today workspace environment, for example a reception. Do you still require your reception to be manned by a full- time employee ? Is your board or meeting room properly utilised by your staff ? Or is it empty most of the time ?
- How big is your current space ? This is the most common baseline we are starting to work from. Is your company undergoing an expansion, or downsizing ? Or is it going through a cost cutting exercise ? Beside procuring a new space with a lower rent per square foot, a smaller space definitely will also help to save bulk of the costs. A proper evaluation is required , in order to determine what are the costs that can be eliminated, resulting a properly planned optimised workspace.
- Alternative storage – Does your business require a lot of space for storage? Is the storage required really necessary, especially in today environment, where most documents are digitally stored and secured in the cloud or within servers. Or perhaps, you may also look at outsourcing storage space to alternative locations that provide ad-hoc storage services at an off side location at a much lower and competitive price.
- Server space- Do you still need a server space ? If so , is it still necessary to have your server space on site? Depending on exact amount of server space required, it could be a better idea to outsource it too. Besides, server space in your own office space may require 24 hours air-conditioning to maintain it. By out sourcing it, you may also help to reduce your utility bills by a huge portion.
- Using IOT ( Internet of things ) tools to determine your workspace efficiency- By leveraging IOT tools, one can make use of the analytics data to manage the air- con, lighting operations as well as to determine how frequently a portion of the space has been well utilised. By using the data derived from the tools, we can better eliminate the excess space and plan better optimum usage for the space required. However it will only makes sense for such tools to be deployed before the move to a new space, so as to pre-determine the actual space required.
The above should paint a clear picture of how much space your business require. Still not sure how much space is really needed for your office? Please contact our friendly customer service team for a non-obligatory consultation.