Let’s face it: the world is not as we once knew. Working practises have changed and the kind of remote style of working once thought impossible has often been proved successful. In an unprecedented case of role reversal, job interviews now often centre around what an organisation can offer the individual, not what the person can bring to a role. This brings a new pressure on business leaders to rethink their working models, with many choosing to adopt a permanent hybrid approach, and others searching for more and more impressive office spaces to attract employees back to the office.
In this changing workplace landscape, many organisations have joined the search for co-working spaces to accommodate a flexible model and attract and retain staff. If you’re on the hunt for shared office accommodation, we put together a helpful list of the top 10 considerations to help you make an informed decision.
- Tailored solutions
Your office is an important branding tool and it should convey the essence of your business. Don’t settle for somewhere that doesn’t meet the needs of your business or send the right messages to your customer base. Look for a tailored solution – one in which you get the opportunity to put your own stamp on it in a hassle free way. From soft furnishings to your logo on the door, you want the flexibility to make your new home your own.
- High speed internet
Maybe an obvious consideration, but there is nothing more frustrating than committing to an office space only to realise the internet speed is far from ideal. Make sure you carry out vigorous testing in advance before signing your agreement. A plug and play option is the way to go to avoid the decision on which provider is best, not to mention enduring the long wait for engineers!
- A single bill solution
Transparency in outgoings is an important consideration for any organisation, and especially for a new business. Many entrepreneurs fail because bills mount at an early stage and strangle the business before it ever has a chance to succeed. A single bill solution combines rates, rent and utilities into one transparent bill and facilitates better budgeting, as well as being so much easier to handle than lots of separate bills!
- Attractive meeting spaces
As the only maxim goes, you only get one chance to make a first impression and when meeting new and prospective customers, partners and stakeholders, you want to make sure to make that first impression a positive one. Find office accommodation that hosts attractive meeting spaces – multiple if possible – so that you can ensure a welcoming space for visitors and for staff alike.
- 24-hour access
Don’t let your business hours be limited by someone else’s. Find a space that allows safe and secure access 24 hours a day. The needs of your business may change, or deadlines might dictate some late night and weekend working, so ensure you’re not restricted when these occurrences come along. This can often hold the secret to true work-life balance – giving you the opportunity to build your working life around family and other commitments rather than the other way around.
- Ample car parking
A very attractive proposition for staff and visitors alike. The stress of finding appropriate parking or paying exorbitant fees for parking spaces can often be enough to detract possible candidates from joining your organisation. Similarly, it is not ideal to invite visitors to your building without being able to provide safe and accessible parking for them. Find a space that offers adequate parking for staff & visitors alike to include bike storage for those who prefer 2 wheels to 4!
- Storage Solutions
The storage needs of businesses can vary dramatically depending on the nature of an organisation. If your business is one which naturally requires excess storage, make sure you factor this into your choice of accommodation location. Ensure it is secure and large enough to cater for your individual needs. If you don’t, you may quickly find yourself outgrowing your office space.
Sustainability is more than just a buzz topic and any equitable office provider will have it high on their agenda. Whether it be the addition of solar panels and/or other alternative fuel sources, commitment to recycling practices or energy efficient heating and cooling services, look for an organisation that is striving to achieve a better world in which we all can live.
- Location, location, location
Perhaps the most important consideration. Where you locate your business requires thought and research. Your choice of location brings a commitment to the area – so many sure you’re satisfied you’re in the right place to attract the staff, customers and stakeholders you need to make your organisation successful.
- Something beyond the ordinary
We can’t put this one into words, but you’ll know what it is when you experience it. It might be the warm feeling you get when you enter the building. It might be the smell of exceptional coffee in the dining facilities. Maybe it will be the buzz of activity you can feel throughout the building. We don’t know what it is, but you will when you see, hear, feel, smell or touch it. And then you’ll know you’ve found the one.