Things to Consider When Planning an Office Refurbishment Project
Is your office or reception space looking a little tired and dated? Are your staff suffering from an over crowded, dis-organised or even a drab working environment?
If so, then it may be time to consider an office refurbishment project! There are many things to consider and plan before you start thinking about moving your furniture and getting the paint brushes out – it makes sense to get the job right at the first time of asking and making a good job of the refit. Spending time and money on your refurbishment will result in a great job and with that come the potential benefits of a happier, more productive workforce, clients that are impressed by your company’s image and a brighter future.
We list here some of the key things that should be considered when you begin to plan your office refurb, feel free to use the points as a checklist, once you have ticked each item you will be ready to call in the tradesmen and get the project started.
Refurb vs Relocate
The first question to ask of your company is, where will you be in 12-24 months time? It is essential to allow room for growth in your plans. A refurbishment project should have benefits for a suitable length of time and not end up being a temporary fix to office overcrowding. If your current location does not allow for future expansion you may need to ask yourself if you are in the right premises. If you are, then great, if not, it may be time to look for other office locations. Either way the next steps will apply.
Interior Design & Organisational Structure
The first thing to consider when refitting an existing office space or when planning the use of a new building is to consider the structure of your organisation and to plan the use of your available space according to team dynamics, customer interface requirements and management supervision. Using computer software or artists impressions to picture your various layout options is often a great way to help with this process.
This may not apply if you have restrictions placed on you by a landlord, office management or building company, however, if you are the owner of your building you should seriously consider making structural changes to your environment. This may include creating a more open plan office space, or on the other hand it may be that you need to create a series of partitioned areas or smaller offices. Such a decision is best made according to the nature of your business and on the dynamics between different people and teams within your organisation.
Communications & Other Infrastructure Essentials
There are many features of an office that lie hidden beneath floors or in ceilings and without them the office would not be able to exist. Make sure you consider things such as; electrical power, telephone and computer cabling, suitable lighting, air conditioning and heating. Each workstation, reception desk, conference room or refreshment area will have its own requirements.
You may choose to make use of your existing office furniture, especially if the budget or your refurbishment project is limited, however, if you do have the option to purchase new desks, cupboards etc. make sure you consider items that will fit into you new environment. Choose ergonomically sound desks and always consider the health and safety aspect of shelving and cupboard space.
Health & Safety and Regulation
A new office should be a safe, well considered office. When planning your refit you should always review the health and safety aspects to your working environment. Especially if you are undergoing structural changes to your building, think about; fire precautions (including evacuation procedures), mechanical & electrical safety, safety signs, accident management and recording.
Perhaps key to all of the above considerations is the coordination and management of the process. After all your company cannot afford to close down whilst building works are undertaken, or communications are fixed. Be sure to plan carefully and avoid down time as much as possible.
By taking each of the above items into consideration and thinking about each in detail will help your office refurbishment (or relocation) go smoothly. The end result will be an attractive workspace for you and your employees, promoting greater efficiency and a more productive business.