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9 Steps To Choosing The Best Location For Your London Office
London is growing and expanding at an alarming rate. Places like Bloomsbury, Mayfair, Wembley and Whitechapel are all named after the small villages that were absorbed into the city over its vast history.
The Greater London region is contained by the M25, a 117 mile stretch of road that is the second largest bypass in Europe. It would take an hour and 40 minutes to drive around it at 70 mph. Not that anyone would EVER attempt this.
The size of London and the vast speed of new developments can make choosing your office location a nightmare. London is home to over 1 million businesses, and those with a physical presence in the city need a place to call home. If you’re running a business in London and you’re wondering how exactly you’re supposed to go about choosing a location for your office, read on to discover our top tips.
We’ve helped countless companies move offices over the years, so we’ve seen what goes into the decision making process. Here’s what we’ve learned over the years.
1. Consider your current location
First up, why are you moving? If you’ve simply outgrown your existing office, could you stay put in your current postcode? Moving offices is stressful enough, but moving to a whole new part of town can offer additional challenges. It will be far less disruptive for your staff if you can find a suitable space close to your existing office.
2. Office lease or co-working?
The growth of co-working spaces is changing the way we think about office space. Rather than taking on all of the overhead costs, you could share these with the other residents of a large shared office. This can allow a small company to offer their staff the perks of a much larger company, such as on-site health clubs and cycle storage. Co-working doesn’t have to mean your workers are bouncing around a large shared office with people from other companies. Many co-working spaces will offer private offices that can scale as your business grows.
3. What will your budget allow?
There’s not much sense looking at Kensington offices if you’re a Kennington budget. Be realistic about what you can afford and then narrow down your search based on the areas you can realistically afford. If being in a high-end area is important for your company and image, then you may need to make come compromises.
4. Access for staff
Before making a final decision about where you will move to, you have to consider your existing staff. Do you know how they commute to work and how long it takes them? If you’re currently located in a trading estate and your employees drive to work, you may want to think about the implications of moving to an office in the heart of the city.
5. Easy to find for customers
Aside from staff, who else needs to be able to visit your office? If customers are able to visit your office, then transport links will be essential. If customers are accustomed to being able to take the underground to your office, you could lose some customers if you moved to an office only accessible by road.
6. Access for suppliers
Another thing you will need to consider is suppliers. Will they still have easy access to your office, or will there be limits imposed on when they can make deliveries. Emission zones, ultra low emissions zones and parking restrictions could make it difficult for some suppliers to reach you.
7. Check out the competition
Where are your main competitors based? There are two different ways of thinking about how your competitors location should influence your decision making. Some companies like to keep a lot of distance between them and their competitors. Others like to cluster together, creating a hub of similar companies. A great example of this would be media companies congregating in Soho. There is some sense of putting yourself alongside competing companies.
8. Think about your image
It isn’t shallow to make your image a key part of your considerations. Customers and clients have expectations of certain businesses and industries. High end companies are commonly associated with Chelsea and Kensington. Law firms traditionally set up shop in Temple. Fleet Street and Bloomsbury are commonly associated with publishing and newspapers. Think about the image you are trying to project and then figure out which district is most suited to your needs.
9. Check legal implications
Before moving offices, make sure you consult with a solicitor. We recently shared a post on the legal side of office moves and how to manage your employees. Your employees have a right to choose between making the move or voluntary redundancy, so it’s important to consider what impact this could have on your business.
Once you’ve chosen your new office space, you’re going to need a hand moving. We’re experts in office moves and can help you to plan and execute your move with ease. Get your quote today.