The right office space can be a game changer for your business, but finding it in London can be a nightmare. With so many different factors to consider – size, location, commute distance, facilities – it’s tough to find the perfect space, and that’s before you even start to think about cost.
Whether you’re a manager looking for a shared space for your team or an individual trying to find a comfortable desk in central London, it’s weighing up where to start looking. Here are the most important things to consider.
What do you need?
It’s vital to have a clear view of what you need from an office before you start looking. Ideally, you’ll want to find an office that fits your current requirements while offering the flexibility to adapt and adjust as your business evolves.
The level of service is an important consideration. A serviced office typically offers a range of attractive, fully fitted work spaces and on-site support staff, allowing your team to simply plug in and get to work. Most serviced offices allow you to rent desks or rooms on a monthly basis – meaning you can easily relocate or upgrade as your business grows.
Managed offices are another option…offering the same fully furnished work space and modern equipment but without the oversight of facility staff. These are typically more cost-efficient than serviced offices, so if you think you’ll be fine without on-site support then a managed office could be a good choice.
How much space?
Space is, of course, something you’ll need to think about carefully. You don’t want to be paying for real estate you don’t need – but your team won’t appreciate being crammed like sardines into one corner of a shared office.
Some properties are rented by the square foot, so think about how many desks you’ll need and whether you want private offices, breakout spaces or conference rooms. Most guides recommend at least 100 square feet per person, but this can vary depending on the layout of the office and your exact needs. If in doubt, head down to a potential office yourself to get a feel.
Some other factors to consider when picking the perfect space include:
- Accessibility: in London this means a central location with good tube and rail links, although some of your team may appreciate parking or bus links too.
- Price: desk space can range from a few hundred to multiple thousands of pounds per month depending on location and level of service, so make sure you shop around for the best deal.
- Additional facilities: a kitchen and tea-making facilities are a must, but many spaces offer extras like function rooms, childcare and gym access, so ask your team what would make their lives easier.
The space you work in can shape the culture of your company – not to mention having a huge impact on the productivity of your people. Renting for the first time can be daunting, but think carefully about what you need and you’ll find a space that fits you and your team perfectly.