Finally. You have outgrown your home office, and it’s time to move your business to its very own premise. You’ve hired someone – two people, in fact – to work for you, and an office of two would be the best route for your journey moving forward.
You live in Wolverhampton, West Midlands, UK, and you’ve ‘spied’ on several vacant office spaces – and had your eyes fixed on a particular office space just across the street. You’ve finally decided to lease that space.
The food served in the eateries nearby is fantastic; the bookstore on your left is quite fancy, and the interior design company on your right has a bed of flowers that greet you at the entrance. It was magical, and you knew that you’ve made the right decision.
Now, it’s time to get down to work. You have secured enough capital to get things rolling, and your next step is how to fill the empty premise with fixtures, furniture and everything else that matters to your business (hmm – perhaps the interior design company can help you out?)
The big question is: How to get started when there are so many things to take care?
If you are still pondering what you should do for your office, let us suggest you these five things you should do before your business can be fully operational in the new location:
1. Lay it out better
When turning an empty office to a fully-operational one, you have decisions to make when it comes to layout. Your office layout is important because the right thing at the right spot means that your office flow is at its best, and in the end, this help boosting productivity.
You need to consider these things: Will you meet your clients in your office? How many employees do you plan to hire? Where is the best spot for your IT cabling needs and power outlets?
You can try answering those questions yourself; indeed, DIY is tempting. However, if you don’t have that artistic tendency, you’d better hire an interior designer (remember the interior designer next door?)
2. Opt for cost-effective fixtures, furniture, and equipment
First impression matters, but you don’t have to splash out too many of your budget to create the vibe you want. Again, try asking for help from an interior designer.
You can play around with colours, fancy-looking furniture but affordable (such as IKEA’s – my favourite!) and focus on creating functional spaces for your office activities.
You don’t need that 32” flat TV – just your work laptop will do. There is one thing you should invest heavily on, though: Ergonomic chairs. It’s important to keep yourself and your employees comfortable and healthy while at work.
3. Coffee machines! Foods!
…if you like coffee, that is. The idea is to invest in a coffee corner for you and your employees. Want to keep yourself refreshed? One of the ways to do it is by providing coffee, tea and healthy snacks to keep you well-nurtured during the work days.
There are even companies that offer coffee service and will deliver and maintain high quality coffee machines and supplies in your office for you.
4. Take a good care of your IT systems
Perhaps the most important thing of all is your office’s IT systems. Be sure you focus on your communication cables and network: Lousy IT systems mean loss of productivity.
Partner with trusted local communication providers, such as Midland Telecom bespoke phone systems, to properly setup your communication systems: Your Internet connection, mobile-enabled communication, and VOIPs. Moreover, the guys over at the company can help you troubleshoot your network problems and any other IT-related issues.
5. Maximise lighting
Don’t underestimate the lighting of your premise! You can have all the fancy office neighbourhood you want, but if your office is dark and gloomy, just forget about getting things done in timely manner.
With that said, always opt for natural lighting from the good sun, as it’s, well, natural and cost you nothing. If your office location is a bit tricky to get plenty of sunlight, try using creative ways to reflect sunlight into your office. Again, ask your interior designer for this.
If natural lighting is not sufficient, it’s obvious that you should use electricity-powered lighting. As usual, focus on low-energy-consumption lighting.
There are so many things to consider when setting up your first office. However, those five mentioned above is sufficient to get you started.
One last tip: Don’t overspend your budget. Set up your office to sustain decent growth – e.g. Adding more employees in the near future – but don’t overdo it.
Be as effective and efficient as you can be. It’s your job as a business owner :)