Selecting a headquarters for your business is not a task to be taken lightly. Company owners must consider a range of factors when choosing the right office space, from the need to accommodate staff growth, to aesthetics, to location.
Surveys carried out by business address providers ava have confirmed that the quality and location of a company’s premises still greatly affect how consumers and their own employees perceive them, with 78 per cent of respondents saying they do judge a business based on its premises to some degree.
One in three people (32 per cent) add that the location of an organisation’s base is either ‘very important’ or ‘crucially important’ from a reputational point of view.
Brooke Williams, CEO of Koherent, says that getting the right kind of office space was essential for the company’s recruitment strategy. ‘The Cardiff software developer employment scene is highly competitive, and we felt that as an employer we had to offer prospective staff more than just a decent salary; we had to offer the right environment, in the right area of the city, in the right kind of community to match our brand identity,’ he says.
A central location for office space
The decision was made to move into an office right in the centre of the city, above one of its iconic shopping arcades. ‘It was important to us to find offices that were aspirational, cool and creative. As soon as you walk through the doorway, which is hidden among the shop fronts of this Victorian arcade, you are taken up to the first floor, to a converted modern office space with period features and an industrial backdrop. It is the perfect fit for Koherent and all of our visitors and staff love it too.’
Designer shoewear company Yull has had the same office in Battersea for two years now. Founder Sarah Watkinson-Yull picked it due to factors based on price, location (near her house), and security.
‘We would have rather had a studio in East London as it would have been more fitting to the brand but the price doesn’t justify it. Our office is fresh, modern, secure, quiet,’ she adds.
In terms of decoration Watkinson-Yull is a firm believer that an office space has to infuse creativity. ‘We have one large white desk that seven people can sit around in the middle. We are surrounded by shoes and picture of shoes/shoot/inspiring spaces and place and colour. We also play lots of music.’
Lucie Greenwood, sales manager at ava, says that businesses might regret cutting corners when finding a new HQ, as the findings show that many consumers and employers still judge businesses based on their location.
‘Finding the right place to base your business can be tricky if you have a limited budget. Naturally, prime real estate in popular towns and cities comes at a cost, and it’s understandable that many business owners will look for cheaper alternatives elsewhere.
‘However, as our findings show, consumers and employees still put a lot of store in an organisation’s location. The money that you save on your rent could well be offset by the reputational damage that you suffer because you’ve chosen one town over another. Also, you could find it harder to attract the best talent if you’re in an unfashionable location.’
Further reading on office premises