Future Proof Office Space?
Adding flexibility to both day-to-day and long-term business activities has become increasingly important to business owners with the overheads attached to workspace and office space often being top of the agenda.
So as businesses seek to manage their office space requirements more effectively while also planning for the future, could the growing number of businesses choosing to enter serviced office space signal a long-term change in their approach to workspace locations and could these same serviced offices be the future proof offices of choice?
As we have all become aware of in recent times things can and do change. While your business plan may seem sound and robust, we have all witnessed firsthand that the economy on which it relies may not be.
So what lessons have been learned from these changing times and how are these lessons being turned into best practices by business owners as they look to be better prepared for such changes in the future?
One goal from businesses leaders, which has certainly grown in popularity since the recession first took hold in the closing stages of 2008, is adding increased flexibility to both day-to-day and long-term business activities. The necessity of introducing a more malleable working model was further highlighted by the severe winter weather and then the closure of air space across Europe following the eruption of
Eyjafjallaj├╢kull ΓÇô both of which caused huge disruption to business activity and the ability of employees to attend their place of work.
An option which has certainly enjoyed a surge in popularity during the last 18 months is that of working from serviced office space. While the appeal of this cost effective, all-in-one office space option had been growing steadily even before the recession, the changes and traumas experienced by many business when the recession hit certainly provided a boost to those business centres offering serviced offices. As businesses of all shapes and sizes looked to reduce overheads, streamline their activity or simply find a safe haven in which to wait out the economic storm, serviced offices proved an appealing and appropriate fit.
While securing office space of this kind may help control costs it does not however overcome the ability for employees to reach their place of work should ΓÇ£acts of GodΓÇ¥ such as the recent volcanic eruption in Iceland and severe winter weather here in the UK occur. Many of these centres do however offer access to a range of technologies, allowing processes to be put in place so some or all work could continue if such circumstances were to recur.
But even as the UK pulls itself slowly from recession (assuming that the accumulative effects of the winter weather and volcanic ash do not knock it back down) more and more new businesses as continuing to gravitate toward serviced offices. A fact highlighted by the Serviced Office Review Series from leading internet specialist officebroker.com.
What is also telling is that many of the businesses who entered serviced offices as a ΓÇ£stop gapΓÇ¥ are seeing the benefits of remaining there – and why not? After-all these serviced offices can deliver everything from the functional and local to a presence in some of the most prestigious business addresses, addresses which include Canary Wharf and ΓÇ£The GherkinΓÇ¥ in Central London, to the iconic Empire State Building in New York and Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur.
But while a dazzling address on the business card may be very appealing, it is the all-in-one package offered by serviced office providers that has helped businesses ranging from start-ups to blue chip corporate clients find a lasting taste for serviced offices. In addition to the budgetary advantages, businesses operating from this kind of workspace have found that the ability to expand or indeed contract their requirements at relatively short notice has allowed them to react quickly and efficiently to the changing demands of the market. And as the statistics from officebroker.com demonstrate and research papers such as AGILITY @ Work from the likes of Regus underline ΓÇô working practices are changing and flexibility is taking centre stage.