Have you been looking around your office and noticing a lot of empty desks? What about unused floorspace hidden away in old conference rooms? Is there an entire floor of your office that no one uses for anything more than storage? If you answered yes to any of these questions you might be leasing too much space. It’s important to maximize the efficiency of your workplace to maximize profits. Considering that your commercial space is your second highest expense (after your employees), you’ll want to make sure you aren’t ever in a space that is too big for your company. Let’s talk about right-sizing.
When you ‘right-size’ your location, you are optimizing its size to meet the current and forseeable needs of your company. For instance, if you’re in growth-mode, you’ll want to make sure your workplace can expand to meet the numbers of your growing team. If you’re down-sizing however, you’ll want a location that gives you the right amenities at the right price and won’t become a burden to you later on. Many companies find themselves in the situation of leasing too much commercial space. This can happen for any number of reasons, but it’s best to find a solution quickly before it starts to affect your bottom line.
How do you know if you have too much space?
First, you’ll want to determine if you are using your current space efficiently. Ask yourself important questions about your team and the space they use every day. For example, are you providing private desks to sales reps that spend most of their time on the road and out of the office? Does your team hold enough meetings to require the number of conference rooms in your current office? Has your team downsized recently? Are you planning on adding a significant number of new hires to the team within the next five years?
Then, try to come up with a space-saving or optimizing solution. For example, if your sales reps only spend a few days a month in the office, you may want to consider having them share a workstation. Many companies have removed cubicles and installed long, open tables like these. These tables take up less room, provide a cleaner design, and can increase employee communication. If you don’t need conference rooms to be conference rooms anymore, you can use this as an opportunity to provide your team with a new amenity. Think about turning meeting rooms into break-out rooms for employees who want a chance to work independently. Consider transforming your unused conference space into a wellness room. Provide employees with yoga mats, towels, plant life, and soft music. Your unused space can be refreshed in a number of creative ways!
What if I can’t just fix it with furniture changes? What if my office is starting to cost my bottom line?
You have a few options when you have more space than necessary.
Your tenant representative can help you determine if your neighbors may need additional space. Be sure to read your lease to ensure that you are not restricted in subleasing the property.
Help out a start-up
Speaking of subleases, do you know any entrepreneurs that could use room for their start-up? Consider renting out excess rooms to ambitious individuals to provide them with an office environment to grow their company. You can help the entrepreneur have an office, and the entrepreneur can provide you with rent for your unused space.
Revise your lease agreement
Another option is to discuss a new lease with the landlord. If you are happy with your current building, work with the landlord to decrease your square footage and increase the time left on your lease. Even though your square footage will shrink, the landlord may prefer the increased stability of a long-term lease. This provides a win-win situation for everyone involved.
Find new space
Another option is to look for a new location. A tenant rep can help show you the savings of moving to a new location with a smaller footprint. We recently helped a company move from 9,297 SF to 5,087 SF. In this example, the company was able to save around $390,000 by right-sizing their office.
Take a proactive approach and be sure you are not wasting money with unused space. The savings from right-sizing your commerical property can be used to grow other areas of your business. If you believe you have too much space contact us for a complete, free space-planning exercise.