This is a contributor’s blogpost …
Renovating, relocating or refurbishing offices is no mean feat. Just the mere thought of it can be exhausting. However making sure that your offices look fantastic is a great reflection on the success of your business, so it is incredibly important. If you are considering refurbishing or taking on an office redesign, follow our top tips on how to do so to an extremely high level whilst ensuring you are making good investments towards the future of your business. Read on for how to ensure that you get the maximum return on your office renovation or refurbishment.
Choose Your Team Carefully
First things first, you are going to need to create your team. Perhaps you are going to be hiring a team of interior designers or office refurbishment specialists, or maybe you are choosing to take on the project yourself. Whatever you have chosen you are going to need help either with a team of professionals or a team of colleagues that will be able to help you get through this project efficiently, quickly whilst maintaining a good eye for detail.
Choosing your team should be done carefully. Putting together your team members is not something that should be taken lightly. It requires a lot of care and attention. One of the most important roles within an office renovation or refurbishment is a project leader. That may be you or you may choose to pass that responsibility to someone else. Whoever you choose, they should be calm, rational and know what an office refurbishment entails. They should be good at managing people and effective at delegating work. Once you have hired your project manager they will be able to stand alongside you in order to ensure that this project runs smoothly, with as few hiccups along the way as possible.
Establish a Clear Budget
You are also going to need to draw up a solid budget. Be realistic with the budget that you have available, and make sure that you are not going to be stretching yourself too thinly to fund this project. You should also make sure that you budget in for an extra 10-15% to cover for any unforeseen extras that you may need to fork out for throughout the project.
It is all very well to plan an office renovation by taking inspiration from other offices that you think are fantastic. However it is really important that you are approaching your project with your individual business at the centre of all your plans. You need to be thinking about what will work best for your company and your staff in order to get the most out of this project and to ensure that your money is well spent and is going into the right areas.
You should be spending time researching what your business needs and what works well in your workplace and what doesn’t. What are your office limitations and where are the strengths of your office and the opportunities to really go to town? What is your long-term strategy for your business and your office space and what technology and office elements are you going to need in order to achieve those objectives? Analysing your workspace and your desired workflow and work environment should enable you to properly plan out your costs, the benefits to your renovation and the goals and needs of your business, your staff and in turn your office space.
You will also need to get a building search and survey done. If your current or proposed work site is lacking something or isn’t right in some way, you could end up with many problems if you don’t recognise it at the beginning. Whether the building is not secure enough and needs commercial lighting installations or whether the location is too inconvenient for staff or clients, or maybe the structure of the building itself is not stable enough, you are going to need an expert eye to look over it all for you. Being able to recognise any additional structural or security elements that will need to be added into your budget is incredibly important in order to not have to abort mission half way through the project because you have run out of budget.
Contractors & Specialists
All big office projects are going to require a renovation or relocation specialist in order to make sure that mechanically, electrically and logistically the project, and all its details, come together. Trying to take everything on yourself is generally not worth the money that you save, as you may end up paying through the nose for mistakes that a contractor would have been able to help you avoid.
This is the point where your project starts to become really rather exciting and enjoyable. You will want to consider everything from the colour schemes and the office equipment, technology and materials that you can use in order to create the most efficient work environment and the most effective and inspiring work culture. Workflow is really important when looking into the layout of offices in order to create a dynamic, open-plan environment for your staff. It should be a space that they enjoy spending time in and will inspire them to be productive and efficient in their day to day businesses.
Plan For The Future
You want to make sure that with everything you do, you consider its long-term value. An office renovation is not something that you can do very often, so when you do take one on you should be making sure that you are planning beyond just the current needs of your company. An interior design overhaul of your office is the best opportunity to change and improve the physical environment of your office premises and the level of enjoyment that your staff experience in their work space.
Therefore you should see any renovation, relocation or refurbishment as an opportunity to get your company up to date on the current trends, sustainable elements, top technologies and design features that can really take your business to the next level today and over the coming years.
Let There Be Natural Light
The natural light in your business is one of the most valuable commodities available to you in your office space so you are going to need to make sure that you are making the most of it. Utilising and maximising the natural daylight that comes into your workplace is essential for the happiness and productivity in your staff. As strong levels of natural daylight are associated with higher brain activity, productivity, improved happiness and less headaches, it is an incredibly important natural resource. So whenever taking on a renovation project, make sure that you are maximising on the natural daylight you have available and are installing LED lighting as a more economical and healthier office lighting solution.
The Importance of Casual Break Areas
You would be surprised how many people plan out an office renovation or relocation project and forget to allocate certain areas for staff to relax in. Creating break, or relaxation spaces, where staff can take a break from their desk is really important. Staff need time away from their desk, in order to stay productive and happy so you should be creating an area where staff feel happy to relaxed and can spend time connecting with their colleagues. As it is re-energising to take a short break and as it refreshes our mental capacities, which leads to higher productivity, this is an important area in your project and one that must not be overseen.
Using Renovation to Reinforce Your Brand
Last but by no means least, is the fact that all renovations, relocations or refurbishments should be approached from the perspective of your business and your brand. Refurbishing your office and business premises is the ideal opportunity to establish your corporate values, drive home your marketing messages and to really solidify the branding of your business. As your office is the first impression for visiting clients it is essential that all offices are giving off the most positive impression possible for your business.
Use your business renovation to live, eat and breathe your business brand and your corporate values and philosophy. That applies to everything from your corporate colour palettes to the office furniture that you use and all the way through to your interior decorations, use of your logo and even incorporating company mottos and quotes.
Using your office to really enforce who you are as a company and who you are as a team and what you stand for as a business is a strong technique for creating focused, dedicated and motivated teams. So make sure that all the design elements and details you choose to integrate into your office renovation, restoration or relocation project have the values and personality and business objectives of your company right at the heart of it.