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We're Gonna Need A Bigger Office: W...


We’re Gonna Need A Bigger Office: When It’s Time To Relocate

There can be more reasons for a business to pick up stakes and move to a new location than most business owners often expect. A growth spurt that makes your office feel crowded. A location that’s no longer desirable. A space that can’t accommodate your technological updates. Rent hikes. Natural disasters. Bad neighbours. The possibilities are, unfortunately, limitless. Thankfully, so are your options when it comes to spotting problems early. Here are a few common scenarios centring around why companies relocate, and some of the considerations to keep in mind if you choose to.

The Workforce Outgrows the Space

It’s a good sign when your business can hire on more workers — that means you’re growing, providing work to new employees while also having the opportunity to distribute the workload more evenly. But if there’s anything that can stifle all that progress, it’s trying to cram too many workspaces — and too many employees — in the same space. Sure, some people do all right working elbow-to-elbow with their co-workers, but it’s not always feasible to have close-quarters office plans or rotating desk assignments. Nobody enjoys working in a sweatshop, and giving workers enough space is one way to give them more peace of mind and a feeling of autonomy. Comfort is one of the underrated keys to productivity, so set up an office plan that gives workers plenty of space to do their job.

The Location is Inconvenient

For many employees, the job’s not the stressful part of their workday — it’s getting to the job that’s a hassle. Younger workers are increasingly gravitating towards urban locales, mass transit, and closer live-work proximity. So planting your business in the midst of an unwalkable suburban office park 45 minutes outside the city won’t just make your business appear out-of-touch — it will make it harder to attract talented workers. An isolated office in a neighbourhood or a suburb with bad character (or no character) can have a detrimental effect on employee morale, whether or not it immediately shows in their work itself.

Clients are Turned Off

Your employees might eventually learn to begrudgingly cope with a sub-optimal workspace, but first-time visitors hoping to do business with you may just wind up one-time visitors instead. You don’t want clients coming away from your office thinking it looks like it hasn’t been updated since 1998, noticing that collaborating departments seem isolated from each other, or wondering why your floorplan is in total disarray. You might know how productive and successful your employees might be, but when someone else’s first impression leads to the idea that your business is as disorganized and outmoded as the office space that hosts it, you run the risk of regularly losing out on golden opportunities.

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If you’re considering an office move, check out our whitepaper on the 4 Steps Before Signing Your Lease. Many have found it to be a useful resource for getting the ball rolling on their relocation. Alternatively, Aura provides real estate advisory services to help guide your relocation efforts, from picking out the best neighbourhood to helping you understand your new office lease. Just contact us today for a consultation!

Creative Ways To Maximize Office Space

It is always important to maximize office space and to make the most of what you have. As a business, your office space and office design say a lot about your status as an employer. The goal as you go through the space planning process should be to make your office somewhere employees want to visit, and a spot where folks would like to see themselves working. At Aura Office Environments, we have seen companies benefit from a quality design that encapsulates their vision and drives forth employee engagement.

 

Maximize Office Space With a Discovery-Centric Design Journey

You want space planning to be a journey, not something someone draws on a sketch pad. You probably have a slew of ideas about what you want your office design to look like, but it is hard to take those ideas and actually draw them out, explain them in detail for the building.

Companies like Aura take a discovery-centric design journey approach. The goal is to meet with you and your company, to get a full understanding of the needs of employees. Talking through things such as office needs, the number of workspaces, all can help get a sense of what the design must entail. By doing this type of discovery work, the idea is to include every need, every ask, and company goal so we are able to consider all demands.

 

The Importance of Maximizing Office Space

It is important to maximize office space at every opportunity. When you make the most of the office space, you bring out the best in your company daily. Think about every employee that walks in your doors. When they enter for the first time, or for the 200th time, do they smile as they cross into space? Is it welcoming? Is the space going to engage them and help them bring their best every single day? If the answer is no, then you are not making the most of the office space available. There are always things going on in companies that should challenge you to revisit your office space.

  1. New Company Initiatives – Are there new company initiatives rolling out? Perhaps the company is making a move towards a more casual dress code than before? Maybe the company is starting to push collaboration more than ever? All these types of initiatives can couple with new office design, making the most of office space with adequate space planning. Every new company initiative is a change, is something you want to push forward. There is no better way to do that than for your place of business to speak it from every square foot of the location.
  2. Expanding Departments – Companies are always going through reorganizations. There are departments that are being built for the first time and others that may no longer exist. You need office space that works as these changes continue to happen. If you have a new department expanding, the space they reside in may no longer work. An adequate office design may allow you to expand what they have for square footage, to give them more collaborate space to grow, prosper.
  3. Adapting to Talent – The talent pool of every company is unique, different. You need an office space which will work with your talent pool. Look at the Millennials generation, for example. That particular generation enjoys big open spaces, having the ability to collaborate day to day. The office design which will work for Millennials may seem more like a college campus. Understanding the needs of these individuals can allow for a design to execute in such a way each need get met.
  4. Storage Needs – Storage is always a problem in every single office. You can never have enough storage, right? There are creative ways to create storage, such as using vertical storage options that do not take up space on the ground level. Think outside the box with your needs, but also make sure you are not creating storage for storage sake. You need to have a business justification for it!

 

Benefits of Maximizing Office Space

You gain a lot of benefits from really maximizing office space. Some of these benefits include employee engagement, attracting and retaining talent, as well as positivity.

  1. Employee Engagement – You want every employee to have engagement, to really enjoy coming to work daily. The surroundings where folks work has a big impact on their engagement. Are they happy with their cubicle or would they like a more open and free space to operate daily? Does the noise level of the office let them hone in and focus? All of this sparks from the design planning of the office.
  2. Attracting and Retaining Talent – You want your company to attract and also retain the very best talent. One way to do this is with great office space, one that is inviting and enjoyable! Design your office with the goal of making it a real destination for current and future employees.
  3. Positivity of Employees – You want employees to be happy. When you have a design that encompasses employee needs, chances are their positivity level about the space will be that much higher. The goal is to give employees a reason to smile, and the combination of the office space and their day to day work achieves the goal.

 

Conclusion

Having a tremendous office design can help any business grow in terms of profit, engagement, and creativity. When you go through space planning with the team at Aura Office Environments, you know you will end up with a space that caters to each employee’s needs. Every company is different and there is no template approach that works for everyone. As you look to maximize office space, you want to do so thinking about your workforce, not what the latest trend is in office design. By giving your employees what they want, they will reward you with engagement, creativity, and bringing their whole self to work daily.