Underutilized Office Space Can Cost You In More Ways Than One

Scott Price | August 31, 2016

underutilized_space_costsThe importance of a strategically-planned workplace is significant, both in revealing hidden costs and discovering untapped potential. As important as it is, many business owners have anything but a strategy. At any given time, most commercial lessees have at least one or two areas gathering dust and costing them money, which is why it’s important to make every square foot count.

Ultimately you want your office to optimize space, which will reduce property costs while maximizing productivity. Crammed co-working spaces and unused dark corners not only impact the financial costs of your office space, they can also negatively impact your employees. The workplace environment accounts for up to 25% of job satisfaction, and it can affect employee performance by as much as 5% for individuals and 11% for teams. Keep in mind a 2-5% increase in staff performance can cover the total cost of providing for their workplace accommodation.


Your People, Your Brand, Your Needs

Missteps in planning do more than constrain capital. A poorly designed workplace damages your brand as well, makes it hard to recruit top talent, impedes innovation and causes good people to leave. One component to successfully attracting and retaining top talent is to consider the office environment as more than just a set of desks and chairs. Use the physical workplace as an integral tool that will help you recruit and retain the best talent and create spaces that will appeal to the multiple generations in today’s workforce.

There is no “one-size-fits-all” approach, which is why it is important to look at the big picture. Determine what your business needs from your workers and what your workers need from you. A newsroom may need open spaces, to be open to allow for quick communication. An ad agency may do better with a series of breakout rooms where groups of workers can concentrate on specific projects. Even within a single company, individual departments have different needs. Companies thinking about how to structure their offices should research what best fits their employees’ needs by department and create an adaptable space that can easily be reconfigured in the future.


Consider Your Investment

Creating a high-performance, adaptable workplace is not like buying a house. Families can grow into the house over the years, but the workplace must deliver a positive return on investment from the start. Businesses don’t invest in new people, processes or technology without having a clear expectation of how the investment will be recouped. The same should be true of the workplace.

At PlaceValue, we understand strategic workplace plans. Our surveys, on-site observation and evidence-based strategic workplace modeling tools create results that improve worker engagement, enable workplace innovation and advance organizational productivity, all while reducing monthly expenses.

We bring our clients:

  • Comprehensive workplace surveys & observations by qualified consultants
  • Alignment of the environment to the support the business objectives
  • Identified pre- and post-occupancy metrics
  • Integrated 4-D modeling of the finished (and furnished) space
  • Complete budget and cost estimate
  • Leveraged procurement strategy
  • Strategic tax and financial structuring
  • Multiple what-if scenarios, recommendations and budgets
  • Detailed (guaranteed, with fees at risk) outcome, delivery date and price


Bring In An Expert

Maximizing space usage is only part of the financial consideration when it comes to your next commercial lease. It makes sense to have someone working with you, and for you as you reexamine your workplace needs. As a leading independent planning, procurement and project management firm, PlaceValue helps our clients realize today’s high performance, adaptable work place, objectively and without bias. By aligning business workplace design with business strategy, managing the supply chain for maximum value, integrating project delivery, and leveraging our buying clout, we bring our clients immediate cost savings and long-term return on workplace investment. Our independence, world class process and pricing transparency, ensure the best possible outcome for your new workspace. And, our fees usually come from the demonstrated savings! Call us to schedule your free consultation today.

If you’d like to read more about how to maximize space and pitfalls to look out for, download our free report, 3 Insider Secrets for Creating a Great Workplace.