A few years ago, an acquaintance lamented about the size and configuration of his brand new building. Not that it was too small; rather it was too large. It was costly to maintain, not set up well for his office function and was difficult, and time consuming, to modify. While he had the facility built from the ground up, the bulk of his effort was directed to the exterior design, lobby aesthetics, and mechanical systems with only a general assumption on per person square footage considered for the interior. By his own admission, they did little more than cursory analysis to how his company would work within the office including allocation of individual space, collaborative areas and storage. There was no up-front planning for departmental adjacencies, access to daylight views and future flexibility.
His comments come to mind each time I work with a firm contemplating an updated facility. For example, not long ago, we were retained by a new client to help with site selection, interior build out and furniture specification. The company had outgrown its existing office and was interested in moving to a new space that could be configured and furnished, to better reflect its brand, image and function.
ISCG was engaged to initially budget the process, review multiple sites, complete space planning for each option and determine whether or not the various choices had the necessary square footage, build out allowances and configuration, to meet the client’s needs.
After negotiating tenant finish requirements, and designing functional needs within each specific configuration, the client was able to select the best option and secure an outstanding space. The new office exceeded all the client’s expectations; but the design required less real estate than originally planned. The savings on up front build out, and future rent, was significant. The client was ecstatic with this unexpected windfall.
Taking the extra step to fully design from “the inside out” ahead of signing a lease resulted in the anticipated productivity improvements at a lower than expected cost.