An office refurbishment in London isn’t like an episode of Grand Designs; you can’t just move your employees into a caravan for Christmas and wait for Kevin McCloud to ask awkward questions about your budget.
Sure, when your clients see the shiny new office you’ve created, they’re going to be so impressed by your creative flair they’ll make it rain. But this depends on your employees still having a job to go back to at the end of the works. Refurbs can be expensive, and you’re going to need a plan of action to keep your business ticking over when we’re on site, knocking down walls and creating your version of office utopia.
Lucky for you, we can guarantee your new office handover party doesn’t also come packaged with the presentation of P45s. Here’s how…
Timing is Everything
We get it. You’re a 24/7 business, and the last thing you need is someone taking down the boardroom wall as you’re launching your new product range, (“Now with Extra Plaster Dust!”)
Yet, every company has their downtimes, and it’s worth syncing up everyone’s calendars to see when it’s best to move the builders in. If half the office is taking their summer holidays at the same time (and the other half is daydreaming about Instagramming their beach legs), then take advantage of the downturn in productivity. Same with Christmas shutdowns and school holidays.
After all, this refurb is already costing you money. Don’t compound the pain by making your accounts team do the end of year financial reports while balancing their laptop on a contractor’s hard hat (we’re a little too helpful sometimes).
Working evenings and weekends?
Speaking of helpful, we’re the self-sacrificing sort. As experts in office refurbishment in London, we know what it takes to work around our clients and putting together a project programme that includes works outside of business hours.
Those client areas such as receptions and meeting rooms? We know they can’t suffer any downtime. We’ll, therefore, sneak in after everyone has gone home, spruce them up, clean up after ourselves and leave no trace that anyone was ever there, except for a kick-ass new office and the lingering scent of Fancy New Desk.
We’re basically like refurb fairies or fit-out Father Christmas. So, make sure to leave some strong coffee in a saucer before you go home for the day (we like Brandy too). Sure, the programme might take a little longer to complete, but it might mean you don’t have to kick staff out of the office for a few weeks.
What About Phased Works?
If you have a small office, we’re not going to lie – this is a bold decision. However, if you’re Billy Big Jobs, your office space may be big enough to remain in occupancy while the works are taking place. We have shed loads of experience in this type of job – plus, we get to partake in the office birthday cake when it’s being handed out.
If you’re sticking around, our team will put together a handy guide to exactly what we’re doing, when we’re doing it, what facilities will still be available, and if any staff will have to move to a different desk.
If you have a multi-floor office, well then we’re cooking on gas. We’ll occupy each floor one by one, and produce individual plans detailing where everyone in the building is moving, and when. This logistical masterpiece will be as seamless as possible so that your staff aren’t playing a game of musical chairs every week.
However, if the works are fairly dramatic, you may find it better to…
Plan for Swing Space
Put away the car keys: we mean the other type of swing space. It’s significantly less fun (we hear), but it does ensure staff can continue working without too much disruption.
For your more drastic office refurbishments in London, moving to a temporary workspace is the quick and dirty method of continuing business as usual. It means your fit-out company can move in, rip everything out at once, and put it all back together in double-quick time. It also means we don’t have to worry about Janet from marketing choosing to disregard the signs and climb inside the exposed ceiling void like a racoon.
If you decide moving to swing space is right for you, make sure you talk to your staff about logistics. There’s nothing more alienating than finding out your employer has decided to temporarily relocate from Zone 1 to deepest darkest Zone 5, and forgotten to provide you with a sleeping bag, a firelighter and a pack full of Pret survival rations.
Of course, you can also encourage staff to work from home, if you have the right IT support. Now might be the time to try out that new Skype thing everyone has been going on about.
But don’t worry about staff getting too comfortable working at home in their pyjamas. By the time the office has been completed, they’ll be fighting to come back.
We’re used to working around our clients so they can keep the lights on while we’re creating them a kick-ass new workspace. Call us to find out more about office refurbishment in London and how you can keep the lights on, while we get down to the hard work of creating your luxurious / retro / punk / upcycled / corporate / biophilic / scandi* new office space.
*delete as appropriate