Does your current office space resemble a tin of sardines? Do people stop and stare come 5pm, wondering just how you manage to cram all those people into a tiny studio? With a few of these tips you may be able to make better use of your office space, no matter how cosy it may be.
Could you be paperless?
Increasing numbers of businesses are storing their documents and data digitally in ‘the cloud’ on online apps into which you can save documents that you can still access offline in a folder on your computer. Citrix found some 24% of business do so at the moment; a figure that is expected to dramatically rise to 83% by 2014! One of the many factors behind this surge is how apps such as Google Drive allow you to cut down on physical storage as you keep more documents digitally in the cloud. The best thing about an app like Google Drive is that it’s free to use, you only have to pay for upgrades if you run out of the initial 5 Gb of space.
If you have huge, ugly filing cabinets wasting floor space, then storing more digital data and cutting down the amount of physical storage you use to house all that paper can be a positive step (although it is still advisable to back up your data on an external hard-drive). Furthermore, removing unsightly furniture can only improve the working environment, who really wants to spend all day staring at the back of a filing cabinet?
Make your desk space more flexible
With all your data and documents (securely) floating around in the cloud, your employees can access it from all manner of different locations: their house, a co-working space, the gym, wherever (as long as you can find an internet connection). What this means is it is easier than ever to go to work without actually going into the office
Combine this with implementing a ‘hot-desking’ policy, where no-one has a set desk space but those who are in the office on any given day just grab a desk where they can, and you can effectively have more staff sharing a smaller, neater area.
In addition why not consider paying a little more for a virtual office? These often-affordable virtual workspaces provide you with things such as a professional address, phone and post receptions and meeting rooms, without any expensive permanent floor space.
If your business is at a stage when you find yourself having to have more and more meetings with clients, then this could be a great option. If you were to pay for a virtual office you could also avoid having to upgrade to a larger space with space for meeting rooms. Also remember a lot of the best business is often done in the pub!
Alternatively you could actually consider, rather than renting a tiny box-like office, looking for a slightly bigger space. Not only will this give you a workspace with plenty of room to expand, but you can cover the extra costs by renting out your spare desks on a site such as Office Genie.
This is me cheating a bit. It’s not strictly a way to maximise the space you currently have but it is a really viable option for a business struggling with small office space, and is well worth considering!
Peter Ames writes this on behalf of Office Genie, a UK site where you can find a huge variety of desk and office space equipment.