Your small business may have had to settle for less-than-luxurious office space when you were first starting out, but success has brought you to the point where you can consider upgrading your office space with remodeling. Regardless of whether you’re looking at remodeling your office to advance your business, or purely out of necessity, take the time to consider how you can gain the best advantage from your remodeling project. Remodeling your office space lets you make your office more comfortable or more efficient operationally, or you can even totally rebrand your company image. Since remodeling probably represents a major expenditure for your firm, it’s best to think about all the possible aspects and do it carefully.
Reasons to Remodel
There are a variety of reasons you may be considering a remodel. Sometimes an office remodeling is prompted by safety concerns. A remodel can remove potential safety or health hazards that are common in older buildings, such as asbestos insulation, dangerous paint, or old bacteria-ridden carpet. Your remodeling effort may be motivated by a desire to upgrade your office to make it more comfortable, more conducive to productivity, or more attractive to clients to enhance your brand image. If you’ve substantially expanded your staff since acquiring your office space, you may be looking at a remodel as part of expanding your space to accommodate a larger workforce, in which case you might want to think about shifting some personnel to place groups of employees who frequently interact close to each other.
Planning Your Remodel
You can obtain a lot of benefits through careful planning. While elements such as the office kitchen or bathrooms may not be the main object of your remodeling, as long as you’re upgrading, you might as well consider how you could make such areas nicer for your employees. Office kitchens tend to be cramped and unattractive. You can make your business look more attractive to both clients and potential new employees by having a pleasant, spacious kitchen or cafeteria area. You can also use a remodel to improve your infrastructure. It might be possible to eliminate a lot of extra wiring and cabling by taking steps such as relocating computer servers or telephone hubs. Think about some energy-efficiency upgrades that can be combined with improving the appearance of your office and making it more comfortable for your employees, for example, adding some large, thermal-efficient windows. Take the opportunity to just do some general sprucing up, like new paint and possibly some new office furniture. Adding some bright colors that match your company logo and providing your staff with more comfortable desk chairs can help you attract and retain top talent, and they’re also part of upgrading or enhancing your brand image with clients. Carefully plan out your remodel with a focus on its primary purpose while considering aspects, such as adding more open space or more private offices. This will help you spend the money efficiently and get the most out of your effort. Financing your remodel should be a key consideration in your planning. You don’t want to get halfway through the process and suddenly realize you don’t have the funds to complete it.
The Remodeling Process
The actual process of remodeling will necessarily involve at least some temporary inconveniences. Notify both the public especially clients and your employees as much in advance as possible about your office, or at least parts of it, being closed for a time while renovations are being made. Consider ways to keep office shutdown time to a minimum, such as doing the work in stages so that you can have just one area at a time closed while keeping the rest of the office open, having work done on weekends, or temporarily renting some nearby space so that your employees can keep working. If the entire office will have to be closed for some period of time, work out a plan for either using alternate space or for having your employees work remotely as telecommuters during the period. If your business requires regular meetings with clients, make sure to reserve the necessary space for meetings and make sure your clients know where your temporary conference room is located. If your company is located in a large office building, ask your fellow tenants to see if they have meeting space they’ll let you use for a short time. Keeping people informed, through your social media accounts, about the progress of your renovations is a great way to get information out in a way that engages your clients and strengthens customer relationships.
Capitalizing on a Remodel
Make the money you spend on remodeling an investment in your small business that pays a good return. Hopefully you’ve upgraded the look and feel of your office in a way that elevates your company image and that can help you attract top-flight employees. Issue a press release announcing the completion of your office renovation, and contact local media directly to see if they’d be interested in doing a story on, for example, the success of your small business that has led to a significant office expansion. A local TV news story or a photo of your new offices in a newspaper or trade magazine is great free publicity that shows your business’s success and growth. Invite existing and potential new clients to a grand re-opening party at your newly redesigned office. This can be an opportunity to reach out to new clients, and engage and impress existing ones. Publish photos of your renovated office on your company website and liberally across social media, accenting the most important changes. A well-planned office remodel can be a very worthwhile investment that propels your business forward. Take advantage of the opportunities it presents to improve your office layout, make your employees happier and more productive, garner free publicity, and enhance your company image with clients.