Using Office Design to Reflect Office Value
What makes a great office space? If you own or manage a commercial office building, you’ll understand the need to clearly reflect the office value when advertising for new tenants. Naturally, it’s a dollars and cents game, and you want to earn as much income as possible for leasing your office. It’s difficult to do that if the office design is shabby, outdated and generally unfit for modern workplaces.
The same applies if you’re an interior designer working on behalf of property owners. You’ll have budgets, time constraints and a mandate to show the office in its best light. By understanding your target market’s needs, using space effectively and modernising your office design, you can increase the leasing potential of commercial office space.
The link between office design and office value
As a commercial property owner or office designer, it’s important to take a step back and view things through the eyes of potential tenants. They want value when choosing a new office space, and value doesn’t always mean cheap.
To the modern business, value means the office design is such that they don’t need to do much when they move in. They can also make adjustments easily. The rooms are all equipped with appropriate networking and telephony. Most of all, the office looks professional for their clients.
So, there is an intrinsic link between office design and office value. In very simple terms, a great office design is more desirable to tenants, creates competition when leasing, and ultimately earns the owners more income. As a flow-on effect, tenants are likely to stay longer, meaning less advertising, legal and fit-out costs in the future.
How to use office design effectively
To successfully show an office’s value, you need to provide expert design services. Whether you’re a designer yourself or you consult with office fit-out professionals, it’s important that you get it right. Using professional office fit-out experts is always advised, and the reason will become clearer as we discuss the things you need to consider below.
There are two key things to remember, however. Firstly, it’s not about what you value as the owner or even as the designer, but rather what potential tenants value. You may want everything installed as cheaply as possible, or you may want the finest designer tables. However, both extremes can be problematic.
Secondly, it’s about finding a balance between cutting edge design and office functionality. This is where you really see the importance of office layoutl. Here are some of the things you should consider when redesigning an office space.
What does your target market need?
Firstly, you need to be realistic about who your target audience is and what they need. This shouldn’t be too difficult if there’s a clear history of the types of businesses that have leased the space in the past. This target market may change, however, if the owner decides to pursue a different type of tenant.
Ideally, if you can identify the traits of businesses likely to lease the space, you can design accordingly. Is it a smaller space that appeals to start-ups? If so, you’ll want to consider a co-working environment with lots of open space, modern (possibly soft) furniture, and an overall sleek, trendy design. For businesses such as legal firms of accountants, you may look towards a more sophisticated design, with an emphasis on professionalism and even luxury. For many, it’s all about what your office says about you.
Every target audience is different, but you can provide much more value by tailoring office space branding to the individual client’s needs.
Find ways to use space more effectively
Maximising the space available is always a bit of a balancing act. On one hand, you want to cram as much working space in there as possible, but on the other hand, you don’t want everything so close that people can’t work comfortably.
If you’re working in a large area, you may choose some room dividers to break up the space and create separate work areas without blocking people in. A little open space in an office goes a long way towards creating a welcoming environment that people want to work in.
Additionally, you may want to consider some innovative storage solutions that also add to the overall aesthetic of the office.
First impressions matter
The front-of-house reception area is of major importance to most businesses. This is where clients get their first glimpse into a business, and therefore, a professional image is paramount. Not only does this first impression count for clients who visit the tenant, but also the tenants themselves. If they’re visiting to check that the company office layout is right for them, you also want them to be impressed.
Consider making this area elegant, functional and suited to the persona of the target market. If you’re going to choose customised furniture fit-outs anywhere, this is the place to do it.
Modernise for current business needs
What do businesses look for today? As an office designer, you’re likely up to date with recent trends in office fit-outs, and this should be of major consideration. Even if you have budget constraints, it pays to search high and low for cost-effective office design solutions that can modernise any space.
Customised or soft furniture is always popular for modern offices, but again, consider the trends according to the target audience. Most modern offices are moving away from a very cubicle-based desk setup, however, for some office types this is very necessary.
Don’t forget meeting spaces
When designing an office space, it’s easy to get caught up in the overall look and feel of the largest office area, but the meeting rooms are important too. Meeting rooms aren’t just for staff meetings, but also for client showcases and meetings. So, a business client is likely to take great interest in seeing the meeting rooms blend well with the rest of the office, maintaining comfortable office space products that create a good impression on their clients. Meeting rooms are also a great place to find creative ways to display company values.
Choose flexible office solutions
Finally, the best way to ensure the success of any office redesign is to make sure your furniture choices are versatile. From an owner’s point of view, if they can make a few simple changes between tenants, their costs go down considerably. From a potential tenant’s point of view, it’s much the same. If they have very few fit-out costs and can imagine themselves in the office space from day one, the office becomes more valuable for them.
The benefits of using great office design
If you’re designing an office fit-out on behalf of a commercial property owner, you probably already have a vision for how the space should look. Let’s take a look at the key benefits of office design, as this will show how you can deliver more value to your commercial clients.
Fewer fit-out costs
All commercial properties are different when it comes to fit-out. Some owners are happy to pay for the fit-out, while others put the onus back on the tenant. This is all agreed when drawing up a contract, but in many cases, the owners are happy to foot the bill because it’s in their long-term interest.
This is where they often hire a designer to take care of the fit-out, and naturally, they want it done in a cost-effective way. By doing it properly the first time, the property owner is hoping that when the current tenants move out, they may not have many fit-out costs next time around.
Appeal to a wider range of tenants
By using professional office design services, you can create a modern and consistent look throughout the office. This allows the property owners to appeal to a larger target market without making many adjustments. Most tenants want some sort of customisation, but if the overall space is well designed, the owners should be able to generate plenty of interest in the property.
Professionalism is a valuable commodity
When tenants are looking for their new office space, they know the value of professionalism. It’s exactly why we mentioned focussing on the reception area, because they want to create a great impression on their clients. For a property owner, advertising a professional office space is a terrific way to attract higher-paying tenants, because businesses know that appearances are everything.
The property owner wants to describe your office space as professional, modern and elegant because it’s simply far more appealing to clients. As a designer, you can provide that value with modern, functional office solutions.
Potential to charge higher rent
Ultimately, the end goal for commercial property owners is to make as much money as possible. That usually comes from providing a sophisticated, appealing office space that attracts higher rent. Naturally, advertising a run-down office with old furniture and mismatched chairs isn’t going to attract the quality of clients they really want.
So, as a designer, it’s your job to create an environment that appeals to tenants who are willing to pay a premium for beautiful office spaces.
Less time without tenants
Finally, perhaps the most important thing for a commercial property owner is ensuring their building is tenanted for as long as possible. This is why as a designer, you often have strict time constraints in between tenants. But the overall goal is for owners to have the property leased more regularly, with less time between tenants.
By designing functional, modern and appealing office spaces, you give the owner the best chance of filling a vacancy quickly, which means less time without income. However, as you know, this means strict deadlines for you and a need to have quality suppliers of your own.
If you’re a designer looking for reliable office furniture suppliers in Perth, we’d love to hear from you. Not only do we stock a great range of office equipment at affordable prices, but we can give you the confidence to meet any deadline. Contact our friendly team today for more information.