Whether you are a private enterprise or a non-profit organisation, choosing the right office space matters and in many cases, it can be the difference between success and failure thanks to a myriad of reasons, including infrastructure, connectivity and even accessibility.
For a non-profit organisation, choosing the right space must reflect the mission you are on. That space will help you both attract the right people, and get you access to the right areas.
We are going to take a closer look at how to find the right workspace for nonprofits organisations and provide you with some tips on the things you need to consider.
Step 1 – Working out what you need from your office space
Try to figure out as quickly as you can what it is you need from your office space. Is it a case of a low-cost meeting place where work can be undertaken a few days of the week and then people can work remotely on the days they’re not working? Is it that you need a full-time set-up where you can hold many meetings, have good infrastructure set up in and around your office areas? Do you need something that is easily accessible from attracting the top talent to partners who may be visiting your office complex regularly – easy to get to from airports or railway stations? Do you need good internet access and so on…
Step 2 – Budgeting
You need to look beyond just the occupancy costs. Other costs — such as the variety of taxes that need to be paid as well as something as simple but often forgotten like, the cost of parking — should also be reviewed. There is a significant difference in these costs (parking) from city to city and can amount to a lot over a period of time.
Think about the budget your organisation is setting for refitting as well. From desks to machinery and even something like a coffee/tea station. What are you spending the money on and what can be maximised for other avenues.
Step 3 – Owning vs renting space
Thanks to a global pandemic, many office spaces have been vacated… which for want of a better description in today’s current market is; organisations can operate remotely saving money. That’s great for some industries but not for others.
What this also means is that the volume of available space has seen many landlords selling rather than renting – and therefore prices are coming down. It may not be on the cards for a non-profit organisation to buy, and instead choose to rent but thanks to the market and how it has changed, this provides opportunities for your non-profit organisation.
Some landlords may even sell entire floors rather than the building itself which, if your cash flow is good – or you have saved cash this could be a good compromise. Remember, buildings, especially in attractive areas, gain value. In the future, this could be a good source of income.
Step 4 – How to find suitable offices in your area
There are a few different ways to find a suitable office in your area. Firstly, you can work with brokers that have specialist knowledge in this area. They can advise on the best areas and even give you insights into things such as infrastructure as mentioned in the first part of this guide.
Another way to find a suitable office is to reach out to the local council and ask for help and advice. In many cases, there will be someone in these institutions who can provide information and advice to better serve your requests.
Step 5 – Finding affordable office equipment
One of the big overspends that occurs with fitting out an office is in the equipment that is bought and used. Luckily there are lots of solutions to this element including going to charities for desks and furniture to having a small budget allocated and used in stores where bulk buying can be used to reduce the cost of furniture.
Things such as Google NonProfit program can help save lots of money on technology costs with access to many pro business features. IKEA has a foundation which donates furniture to non profit organisations. There are many different solutions out there which must be tried before you spend any money.
When building your non profit organisation finding the right office space is essential. Starting with an initial search and understanding what is important to the space needs to be known quickly. Is it that you need good infrastructure links or will it be a place for 50:50 office/remote working.
Another key element in choosing the right office space for a non profit organisation is to understand your budget requirements and spending wisely in this area. From office equipment to knowing what kind of taxes you are paying, be it local or national.