Businesses do not need to invest large chunks of their spare capital on commercial property – they have a range of other options when setting up an office.
While property may turn out to be a sound investment for a business in the long-term, company bosses should consider whether the deposit could be put to better use elsewhere in the business.
One of the reasons for this is that growing businesses need as much flexibility as possible.
Employee headcounts can grow quickly, meaning additional floor space, furnishings and office equipment may be needed at short notice.
If more room is not available at the current premises, the firm’s growth may be constrained.
Smart working practices such as hot desking can help companies build their headcounts without having more people physically ‘in the office’.
But in many businesses, there is still a genuine need to have everyone in work on certain days, and this can highlight any overcrowding issues which may exist.
At some point, every growing business reaches a point where it needs a larger office to support the progress being made.
However, where the business has purchased property outright, it is likely to be much more difficult to move.
The company either has to arrange for the sale of its existing site – and there are never any guarantees about finding a buyer – or pay rent on another property in addition to their existing repayments, adding to overall costs.
Bosses will understand the potential benefits of expanding and moving into bigger offices, but with such upheaval, there may be a temptation to simply try and make do.
However, where companies are simply renting office space – perhaps using serviced offices – they have much more flexibility.
Should growth occur rapidly, the company may simply be able to add extra floor space, move into another room at the same address or upgrade its contract to secure a larger working area.
Either way, employees will have enough room to operate in, allowing them to work to the best of their ability and maximise productivity.
According to Richard Kauntze, chief executive of the British Council for Offices, office flexibility can help businesses progress and make an important contribution to the UK economy.
He claimed that “well designed, flexible office space, let on flexible terms will help drive growth now and in the future”.