If you’re considering moving your company into a new office, you’ve probably realized it can be a significant undertaking. This process can be incredibly labour-intensive, not to mention expensive, stressful, and time-consuming—sometimes requiring weeks or even months to execute.
But this doesn’t have to be the case.
With the rise of flexible office spaces, finding a new headquarters for your organization can be a simple turnkey process. In fact, you can have your team in your new workspace within a matter of days.
Here’s what you need to know.
The challenges of moving into a traditional office space
When you’re shopping for a traditional office lease, the process probably looks something like this:
- You designate a member of your team to spearhead the process
- Your team connects with a commercial real estate broker who learns what you’re looking for and goes out to source options for you
- Once you’ve found an office you like, you enter into negotiations on a binding letter of intent with the building owner to lock down rent costs, term lengths (usually between three and five years), tenant improvement allowances, and additional costs and fees
- From there, you’ll need to review a lengthy lease agreement with your broker and a lawyer
- You sign on the dotted line and take possession of your space
This process in itself takes time, energy, and a shockingly large legal bill. It also comes with the opportunity cost of your C-Suite diverting its attention away from core business priorities.
And this is only the beginning.
From here, there’s a lot you’ll need to plan for, including:
- Time for the physical move
- Time for space planning, renovations, branding, and furnishing
- Downtime and disruptions to business operations
- Time for dealing with logistical issues
- Time for managing technology and utility transfers
From the moment you start your office search, it will take months—of stress and hassle before your workspace is operational and your team is relocated and settled in.
7 ways flexible office spaces make this process simple
There are no two ways about it: moving into a new office is always going to be a significant endeavour—exponentially as the number of employees and space needs increase.
But flexible office space helps make this process simpler, quicker, less stressful, and more cost-efficient in a multitude of ways.
1. Less planning required
While you have the option to work with a real estate broker to find a flexible office space, it’s not essential.
Since these workspaces are staffed by knowledgeable in-house teams, you can simply book a tour, see the space for yourself, and ask any questions you’d like to have answered.
This effectively removes one factor from the equation, giving you faster and more direct access to the operators offering you the space.
And, given the nature of the flexible office space model, there’s significantly less planning required for setting up and moving into your new workspace—there’s more to come on that topic.
2. Simple agreements and flexible terms
Unlike traditional leases, flexible office space agreements are relatively simple and do not dictate the need for a lengthy review by a lawyer.
Your agreement will include your payment structure as well as any deposits and fees you can expect to incur.
By eliminating, or at very least significantly reducing, the need for third-party reviews, the process of finalizing your agreement can happen much more quickly and efficiently than it does when you need to review a complex lease that’s exhaustive and entirely slanted in the landlord’s favour.
Flexible office agreements, by contrast, are drafted to be usually beneficial.
Because flexible office providers are in the business of filling offices on short-term commitments.
When an operator receives two months’ notice from an existing member, they need to find and secure a new member for that space within two months. A long, argus lease agreement would stand in the way of transacting quickly.
As a result, the agreements are short, easy to understand, and much more favorable to members.
3. Turnkey solutions
When you lease a traditional office, you typically decide upon a set volume of square footage for a predetermined length of time.
Today, many landlords are offering fully built and sometimes furnished spaces called “show suites” or “turnkey suites.” The challenge is that these offices may appear move-in ready, but the reality is that they still come with significant upfront monthly costs in addition to the rent.
So, you need to allow time to finish the space, whether that’s renovating and adapting the floor plan and design or furnishing the suite to your needs.
Flexible workspaces are designed to be completely work–ready—they come equipped with things like:
- Breakout areas
- Phone booths
- Wellness rooms
This means you can have your team move in immediately.
Unlike a show suite, flexible offices are fully operational, fully serviced, and running prior to moving in. That means no lead times, no bugs to sort out, and no surprises when move-in day comes.
And, as a result, you can have your team at work in your new space immediately.
But, if you just want a quick, simple move-in, private offices within a coworking space typically include everything you need.
4. Shared amenities
Rather than having to spend time planning how to appoint your amenities, like kitchens, meeting rooms, and lounges, and moving in the essentials you need for them, these spaces are shared and fully serviced—and, as a result, they’re already well-appointed and ready for you to use.
5. Built-in business equipment and services
Just like your amenities, flexible office spaces offer built-in business professional equipment and services.
From printers to scanners, copiers, ultra-secure WiFi networks and servers, and beyond, having these assets already available and at your disposal can cut back on the amount of expense and time your team needs to spend going back and forth with service providers and moving cumbersome equipment.
While you still have the option to keep your own hardware, there’s a good chance you’ll find you won’t need to bother.
Looking toward the future, growth is the main priority for virtually every single business.
So, what happens if you’ve signed a multi-year traditional office lease, and then your team grows and you run out of office space with which to accommodate them?
Ultimately, you’d be forced to either:
- Go through the whole process of finding a newer, bigger office or
Go through the whole process of finding yet another office that meets your needs so you can provide a secondary location for your team
The same applies to a scenario where your business contracts or you decide to embrace a hybrid work schedule.
Since they offer flexible terms, coworking spaces allow you to grow or contract your workspace as your business needs dictate—and it can generally be done in the same building.
And, in the instance where you simply outgrow the available spaces in the building, coworking space operators like iQ Offices can find you a new workspace rather than sending you out to source one on your own.
7. Professional support
One of the most fundamental differences between traditional offices and coworking spaces is that the latter is a hospitality-driven business model.
This means that, instead of simply providing you with an empty space, coworking space operators have in-house support teams dedicated to making your workday more productive.
These teams can help coordinate moving logistics and even help out with IT setup, in turn streamlining the entire process of getting your team into your new space.
The reality is that moving into a new office is a big, time-consuming process. But with a flexible office, you can have your team up and running in your new workspace in a matter of days—not weeks or months.
Are you in search of a new and more flexible headquarters for your company? If so, book a tour of your local iQ Offices location today. We’d be happy to answer any of these questions for you.
Kane Willmott is the co-founder and CEO of iQ Offices, the largest independent Canadian-owned co-working operator with offices in Ottawa, Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. iQ Offices provides beautiful office spaces with safety, service, privacy and design at the forefront.