2012: The Year of the Flexible Office
From big business to those with a local focus, the uptake of flexible office space has increased by 10% in 2011, driven by bigger businesses still seeking to remedy the hangover of less cost-conscious times.
With resource management and cost effective solutions high on the agenda, some argue that the lessons learnt during recent years could bring about significant changes in the way businesses choose to operate. As one of the most inflexible factors impacting on a firmΓÇÖs balance sheet, it is perhaps no surprise that the effective use of property, and office space in particular, have come increasingly under the microscope.
ΓÇ£The most expensive office space is dead spaceΓÇ¥ explains award winning consultant Rebecca-Jane Strawford.
ΓÇ£While pre-recession businesses may have seen it as a luxury or reserve, the cost of operating and maintaining such space has now begun to hit home. Inevitably, this has resulted in strategically minded decision makers seeking out an alternative. In many cases this search has presented serviced office space as the ideal solutionΓÇ¥
According to data soon to be published by officebroker.com, the largest independent broker of serviced office space in the UK, the volume of flexible office space rented between January ΓÇô November 2011 was 10% higher than during the same 11 month period of 2010.
ΓÇ£Flexibility is at the heart of serviced offices. You construct the package you want based on the space you need. As resource management is a key factor in choosing a serviced office, the benefits of having onsite services and support for a fixed monthly fee simply reinforces the value of locating your business within a dedicated business centre,ΓÇ¥ concludes Rebecca-Jane.
ΓÇó Office Space & Resources are maximised
ΓÇó The company pays for only what it needs
ΓÇó Fixed monthly cost is budget friendly
The cost of serviced office space has already been on the increase in key areas according to officebroker.com, driven in part by the growing number of corporate clients turning to flexible workspace. With generally larger requirements, officebroker.com has highlighted these larger businesses as one of the principle influences driving the overall uptake of serviced office space in 2011.
Traditionally inclusive of rent and business rates, serviced offices are made available on a short-term licence and charged on a per desk basis. There are currently over 2,500 locations offering serviced offices across the UK, ranging from local low-cost solutions to premier business addresses such as Canary Wharf and the iconic ΓÇ£GherkinΓÇ¥ in the City of London.
So with continued uncertainty over the economic outlook, could the increased appetite for serviced office space recorded in 2011 gain further ground in 2012?