Deciding it’s time to move office and upgrade to something a bit more modern is a big step. And it’s not always an easy decision because your office often feels like home. Yes, it might have quirks, like the cracked toilet seat and the flickering lights, but they’re quirks that make your office unique, right?
Sure, but they’re also the quirks that’ll make clients run a mile and stop you from attracting the best talent to work for your business.
13 signs it's time to move office
If you’re ready to upgrade but still need a little persuasion, here are thirteen key signs it might be time to up sticks and move office:
1. Your lease is expiring
If your lease is ticking down, it’s the perfect time to consider if your current building and office meet your company's needs. Especially if the building is dated and your landlord only fixes problems at the fifteenth time of asking.
An expiring lease makes it easier to move to a better building where you pay a lot less, get better service, and end up in offices complete with ultra-modern equipment. Or, if your office does meet your needs, then now is the time to see if you can negotiate a better deal.
2. Your office is overcrowded
If your employees:
are packed in like sardines
struggle to hear customers on the phone due to the proximity of their colleagues
need to squeeze past each other when moving around the office
have to line up to use the toilets
And its standing room only in the lunchroom, chances are it’s time to move to a larger office. The pandemic has also made us more aware of hygiene and social distancing, which means a lack of space can lead to anxiety, stress, and poor mental health.
Having somebody breathing down your neck to meet a deadline is one thing. Feeling their breath on the back of your neck due to lack of space is another.
3. You want to expand
Overcrowding with your current staff quota means there’s little to no chance of you expanding and staying in your existing building.
If this is the case, it pays to plan ahead. Don’t just consider how many staff you plan to hire in the next twelve months. Think about how large you expect to grow over the next three to five years.
With a bit of forward-planning, you’ll save yourself the hassle of having to move officers again two years down the line when your office is bursting at the seams again.
4. There aren’t enough parking spaces
If you don’t have enough parking spaces for your current staff, what happens when you expand?
Parking will become a free-for-all, and some employees will have to park further away and pay for parking. Long-term staff will feel like they’re being mistreated because they’re no longer guaranteed free parking. And if you give long-time staff priority, new employees will feel they’re being singled out for unfair treatment.
Either way, it’ll lead to an unhappy workforce who’ll pin the blame on you.
5. There aren’t enough meeting rooms
Having thirty-five staff and one meeting room means it’s pretty tricky to find a time when it’s free. This can lead to tension between staff who never seem able to book out the room. And while taking a client out to a nearby cafe or coffee shop feels like a nice gesture, it’s not a good look.
And if they’re a prospective new client, you’re not giving yourself a chance of impressing them. All you'll do is shout in their face as you try to make yourself heard over the milk frother.
6. You need more storage
Overflowing filing cabinets, boxes piled high in every square inch of space, and shelves packed so tightly you need a crowbar to prise out the May invoices file.
And as for the archive room?
Well, you’d have to be an expert climber to successfully scale the mountain of boxes you’ve somehow managed to squeeze inside.
7. You want to add your own branding
Adding your company logo and branding to the walls and windows is a great way to showcase your business. But if your landlord won’t allow it, you’re stuck with the same dated wall colour and carpets that have been there for years.
Branded walls and windows can create a first impression that stands out and lodges you firmly in your client’s mind long after they’ve left your premises.
8. The facilities are broken, outdated, or waste energy
Toilets with broken seats and doors that don’t lock. Lifts that constantly break down, lights that need replacing, and equipment that wastes energy not only show you in a bad light it can stop you from landing contracts.
Because every business has to take sustainability seriously these days, and a green supply chain is a big part of that. If your business doesn’t have a plan to reduce energy emissions, then you’ll lose out on big contracts (to learn more about lowering your carbon footprint, visit the Inteb website).
Losing out on a contract is a massive headache in itself. And that’s before you even get to the problem of staff nicking their backsides on cracked toilet seats, poor lighting causing eye strain, and staff and clients screaming in lifts as they break down - again.
9. Your building is old
Your business premises go a long way to impressing clients. So, if yours looks tired, ugly, and dirty, imagine how off-putting that is for a client coming to meet you for the first time?
And as for marketing yourself on social media?
The last thing you’ll want to do is take a shot of the exterior if it looks like something from the 1970s. A modern building, on the other hand, you’ll plaster all over your printed marketing and social media.
You wouldn’t meet anybody in a muddy suit with holes in the knees for a first date. So why would you want to work in a building that’s harming your brand’s look, feel, and vibe?
10. You get little or poor natural daylight
Poor natural light can cause mental and physical health problems in the workplace, including depression, stress, anxiety, headaches, eye strain, and fatigue - and that's before you even consider accidents, including trips and falls.
Working in a bright office with good natural can do wonders. Just 15-minutes of natural light is enough to release endorphins that reduce stress, boost energy levels and fight off depression.
But if you're surrounded by skyscrapers or your building has few or no windows, needing all the lights on at 10 am on a sunny July morning means your energy bills will be high, and your staff’s mental health and productivity will be low.
11. You’re in a hard to reach location
Even if none of the above is an issue for your business, another reason it might be time to change offices is location. Your offices might be bright, airy, and ultra-modern, but if you’re in an out-of-town business park or trading estate that’s hard to find and has poor public transport links, you’re making it difficult for employees and clients to reach you.
Position yourself in a bright-airy and ultra-modern office that’s easy to find and is close to transport links, however, and you’ll attract the cream of the crop.
12. You’ve noticed a drop in productivity
You’ve built a strong team, so why has their productivity dropped so dramatically?
Chances are, it’s all of the above.
Cramming the room with desks and people and expecting them to work on old equipment with poor toilet and kitchen facilities affects morale and productivity. You can tell them to pull their finger out all you want, but if they hate their surroundings, your pleas will fall on deaf ears.
13. You want a fresh start
Wanting a fresh start is a massive indicator that it’s time to move office. A move can give your company a cultural shake-up, allow you to rebrand easier, improve morale and boost productivity.
Just think about the mental lift you get from moving house. It’s the same for every person in your company when you move into a new working space.
The benefits of moving to a new office
The time and logistics needed to move offices often put business owners off. But the time and effort are worth it when you consider the benefits.
improved employee productivity, morale, and well-being
reduced staff turnover
team and company growth
a lower carbon footprint
the opportunity to impress and attract new clients
A new environment brings exciting possibilities, so if you’re ready to move office, make sure you’ve got everything you compile your checklist for moving offices.