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5 things to consider when planning an office fit out

The interior of any commercial environment is much more than just a physical space for your employees and clients to work in. The design has to be carefully created so it complements a variety of important corporate aspects. Making your commercial interior design work for your business isn't so difficult after all.

Is the price estimate comprehensive?
As a savvy business owner, it's important to ensure that all decisions fit in with your company budget. This is especially true for extensive projects such as conducting a new commercial fit out. You will have to make sure that the initial quote received from the interior design company includes everything and eliminates the possibility of additional charges. When receiving this first estimate, read everything carefully and make sure it covers all of the following:-

- Design brief
- Building assessment
- Technical plans
- Project management
- Material delivery
- Construction

The more the initial quote covers, the lower the chance that unexpected costs can arise in the future. This means you can effectively budget for the fit out, allocating your company finances in the right manner with confidence you won't be caught unawares by sudden increases in the final amount. The top fit out companies will offer a comprehensive price estimate anyway to give their clients' an accurate idea of how much the final interior planning, management and construction will cost.

Does the design match your branding?
Its also good practice to ensure your new commercial interiors are consistent with any corporate brand campaigns you are currently promoting. Make sure your office is an extension of your other advertising materials, offering clients the very same impression they would get when reading your brochures, browsing your website or watching a television commercial. When designing your corporate space, ensure the final appearance fits in with the following:-

- Brand colours
- Company vision and mottos
- Company values
- Desired appearance

While working with the top fit out specialists, you will have to discuss your branding initiatives so the final designs match these perfectly. In this way, new and existing clients can visit your workspace and gain the right impression. By choosing the correct colours and patterns, visitors will immediately recognise your business when they arrive and will know exactly what to expect when dealing with you and your friendly team of employees.

Are the System Designs Efficient?
The physical space inside your office will also have to take care of your staff's needs. This means you will have to think carefully about the different systems found in your workplace and design the fit out so that these operate in an optimal manner. When arranging the final interior design, it will therefore be important to think about the following systems and integrate them properly within the new premises:-

- Lights and windows
- Power plugs and switches
- Heating vents and thermostats
- Ventilation, ducts and fans
- Air-conditioning units

Not only will there need to be adequate lights and sockets for your staff to use on a daily basis but the general HVAC systems will need to control the climate and keep your interiors completely comfortable. You will have to work with the region's best commercial designers and finalise a layout that takes care of your staff while they perform their day-to-day tasks and push forward to reach your various corporate goals.

How will IT and telecoms be migrated?
If you are moving from one workplace to another, it is also essential you consider how to make the move as seamless as possible especially with regards to communication necessities such as telephone and internet. This is know as 'migration' which plays a vital role in retaining your current clients. After all, you don't want to inconvenience them even when relocating to another work setting.

The top fit out specialists will know precisely how to migrate technology such as IT and telecoms to your new workplace without disrupting communications. In this way, your clients can call or email you, as normal, despite your company being in-between two offices. Careful planning ensures you supply the right level of professionalism and service and treat your clients well throughout the design and construction phases.

Avoid potential disruptions and inconvenience by creating a solid migration plan for all your in-office technology. Seamless business continuity will retain your high levels of quality despite the complete workplace overhaul.

Are your new interiors legally compliant?
One final consideration to make for any office fit out is whether your new design follows all required governmental laws. These guidelines cover a range of areas including:-

- Safe electrical setups
- Fire alarms & extinguishers
- Ergonomic environments
- Ample working space
- Health and hygiene

By taking all of these matters into account when planning your new office layout, you will avoid pointless lawsuits and other legal issues in the future. You will also take care of your employees, ensuring they continue to work without any risk of accidents, injuries or illnesses. By spending a little time following these H&S guidelines, you will then avoid the potential damage of excessive sick days, incapacitated employees, etc.

This is the sign of a smart business owner who is willing to invest a little time and effort in the beginning to make their new workplace safer and healthier for their staff. Talk to your fit out professional about how to comply with all government regulations and look after your workers.

By taking the time to consider these important aspects, you will be able to then plan your next office fit out in the right manner. This means the resulting interiors will promote your business by complementing your branding strategies, fitting in with your desired budgetary requirements, complying with all government laws, and supplying your employees with the various systems they require to do their jobs and stay comfortable at the same time.

Saracen are experts in workplace consultancy offering full tailor-made solutions to all of their clients. For further details of our office fit out solutions please visit http://www.saraceninteriors.com/what-we-do/office-fit-out/


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