5 Questions To Ask Before You Move Office - Birchills Blog
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5 CRUCIAL QUESTIONS TO ASK BEFORE YOU MOVE OFFICE

Carttoon Shows 5 Crucial Questions To Ask Before You Move Offices About Your Phone Systems

If you are thinking about moving offices there is a lot to think about. In fact when I set out to write this checklist, based on my own experiences, I was quite amazed at how much there is to consider.

 
THE CHECKLIST

You need to ask yourself:

1)            Is new office location OK
2)            Is the building OK – Is it big enough - what work will need to be done
3)            How much will it really cost
4)            Are your people going to be happy
5)            Are there any tax breaks?

1. LOCATION

Is the location prestigious enough?
Can you drive to it and park?
Are there good public transport links?
Is it easy for clients to visit?
Is it easy for you to visit clients?
Are there local amenities (shops, restaurants, pharmacies, etc.)?
Is there good access to major roadways – no permanent traffic jams?
Is there access to major airports?
Is it easy to access to a ‘talent pool’ of potential employees?
Is the area scheduled for major changes?
Is there noise or air pollution?
Is flooding a problem?
 
2. BUILDING

Is it prestigious enough?
Are there any safety risks and are they adequately controlled (there should be a building safety plan)?
Who are your neighbours – are you happy with what they do?
Is it big enough – allowing for future growth?
Can you gain access when you want?
Can you use it during the hours you want?
Is it structurally sound  - are  there any leaks?
Is there enough electrical power for your needs?
Are the toilets and hygiene facilities adequate - especially disabled access?
Is the plumbing OK?
Are there enough kitchens/coffee making facilities?
Is the heating/air conditioning OK?
Are there sufficient blinds/sunshields?
Is there adequate lighting  (Health and Safety Executive in HSG 38: Lighting at Work)?
Is there adequate first aid facilities?
Is security sufficient?
Are there good data and phone connections available?
Is the emergency lighting and safety signage adequate?
Is disabled access OK?
Are there adequate lifts and other loading equipment?
Is the waste disposal good enough with adequate recycling facilities
Is there a premises risk assessment in place including asbestos consideration?
Are there an adequate fire plan and adequate drills being carried out?
 
If you want enivironmentally friendly offices then:

Consider a BREEAM®4 rating or some other environmental rating system
Energy efficiency needs to be great
Recycling points must be extensive
Maximise use of natural light
Choose furniture, fixtures, fittings, carpets, equipment with a high proportion of recycled content which can be recycled at their end of life
Use paints with low amounts of toxins
Only use timber that has been certified by the FSC

3. HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?

Consider:
Lease costs, lease terms (any unusual clauses?)
Landlord incentives (any extras on offer?)
Can you negotiate a rent-free period?
Legal and solicitor costs
Service charges
Business rates
Stamp duty
Power costs
Cleaning costs
Hygiene costs
Data costs - maybe new computers and servers
Phone costs - a new phone service
Parking
Depreciation
Extra salaries/expenses for employees
Fire plan cost
Insurance
Moving costs
New stationery and leaflets, notifying customer and supplier costs, updating websites.

4. ARE YOUR PEOPLE GOING TO BE HAPPY?

Your people are your most valuable asset and whilst some senior staff are happy to move across continents for the right position more junior staff may have a problem with moving across town. You should always talk to your people as soon as possible and listen to their concerns. It is crucial that you consider them in your plans.
 
5. ARE THERE ANY TAX BREAKS OR GRANTS?

You need to consider:
You should be able to offset moving expenses against corporation tax
Capital allowances and enhanced capital allowances
Business rates (there are breaks for small companies and charities)
EU grants
LEP funding
Local Councils also provide their own public sector grant assistance programmes.

CONCLUSION

Nobody moves offices without a great deal of thought. I hope that this list covers all of the crucial areas you need to consider.  Good luck!
 
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