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How to Keep Your Business Running During an Office Renovation

May 3, 2020

Undergoing a renovation project for your office spaces is a huge, sometimes unwieldy project task. You not only have to manage the budget but also look at other elements such as choosing a service platform and hiring the contractors for the project. But having an office under renovation can negatively impact the company's productivity and cause operation downtime

You can avoid these with the following tips.

Office Renovation: Some Things to Consider

  1. Consider why you need to renovate and what the alternatives are

Before you decide to start a renovation, think about whether it's really needed or if there are alternatives. Is the office space in its current condition not serving the business goals anymore? Has employee satisfaction and productivity visibility decreased?

Also consider that instead of a renovation project, a new office space would produce the same results. When choosing between a renovation and its alternatives, you not only have to consider the budget for the project but also the cost in terms of workplace downtime. This is especially important if your planned renovation project involves a total office makeover, as opposed to a project done in small parts.

In this case, consider relocating. Looking for a new location might seem difficult and time-consuming, but it would also improve on the factors that made a renovation necessary in the first place.

The best way to figure out which path to take is to conduct a cost-benefit analysis, not only analyzing the overall costs of the project, but also quantifying the costs of downtime, and the labor costs of space searching and project management.

2. Take stakeholders and regulations into account

Even though you may feel a burning desire to change the looks of your office space, it's best to review occupancy certificates, leases, building requirements, and building surroundings (such as the presence of landmarks). These would indicate whether a renovation is even possible.


Work together with all the relevant stakeholders, such as the building owner, designers, engineers, and contractors to get the best results. At the same time, double-check and assess all the work that is involved in the plan to avoid surprise construction and other miscellaneous expenses.


Renovations do not only involve changing the physical structure of the unit. You should ideally be considering how the improvements will best serve the occupants - the employees of your business in this case. For example, when consulting an office renovation service in Singapore, you can specify what kind of amenities you would like for your office space, such as layout, lighting, and strategic placements of workstations, so you can work with the service provider to achieve the goals you want for the space.

3. Determine project scale and roll-out strategy

A renovation is guaranteed to disrupt work processes, but you can mitigate these effects with a good roll-out strategy. You can consult an expert to help you think through renovation goals, budget estimation, and the specific projects to be undertaken. This is so you can determine if the scale of the project and how best to stagger the process. When estimating your scale and budget, you should consider the cost of construction, new furniture, materials, labor, and have a buffer for unexpected costs.


You should also think of where your employees would be working from during the renovation process. Do you have a vacant space within your current commercial unit that will still allow them to work productively? It's very likely that you would have to consider using different office space for the time being. Working next to a renovation project in progress may be disruptive, and you might be moving workstations around frequently depending on which part of the office is being renovated.


When securing a short-term workspace for your employees, make sure that the space fits the requirements they would need to start working upon move-in, such as necessary equipment and number of workstations, in order to minimize downtime.

4. Keep your employees' well-being top-of-mind

Generally, the end result of a renovation project should be to make the space as close to ideal working conditions as possible - a space where employees feel they can feel positive and work well. It's important to keep this in mind even while preparing for and undergoing the renovation process. Consider all the additional stress and any potential health risks from dust and debris.


While it's possible for them to keep working from the same office space, while keeping them away from the renovation area, ideally, you should choose a location for them that would be far from any disruption to their work. The best case would be opting for a temporary office space or implementing a "work from home" policy.

5. Regularly keep track of the renovation's progress

Don't underestimate the need for communication. It is better to regularly check-in with everyone involved in the renovation project, including your employees, contractors, designers, building owner, and even your legal team if necessary.


Set up a dedicated communication channel so that news and updates don't fall through the cracks. This ensures that the project follows the agreed-upon schedule, contingencies are dealt with immediately, and feedback is communicated directly so that the intended results can be achieved.

6. Re-orient your employees to the improved office space

A renovation project does not solely involve construction materials and upgraded amenities and equipment. The human element is as essential as any of the structural ones.

You should communicate with your employees what the intended goals and expectations would be for the project - before, during, and after the renovation. This is the best practice for making sure the main occupants of the office space are comfortable with the project, and so no one feels left out. After the project is completed, conduct a re-orientation to the space so that they can make the best use out of it.

Conclusion

In summary, consider these when undertaking a renovation project - whether the project is actually needed or even possible, and whether moving to a new office or upgrading the current one is a better decision. A good roll-out strategy can ensure that disruptions to your business operations can be minimized.

At the same time, keep your employees regularly informed about how the project is progressing, and involve their input in the decision-making process as much as possible so that they can be happy with the office space improvement after it's completed.

Rent a Short-Term Office

You may need to rent a temporary office space during an office renovation. BOOQED can help you find the right short-term workspace for exactly the amount of time you would need it for so that business operations can keep going as usual.