Category Archives: Office Space

6 Office Interior Design Tips

Interior Design Tips For Your OfficeEach year, the contemporary office setting continues to evolve. The standard office interior design setting has significantly improved from the traditional desk and chair in a confined room, to the colorful open office designs, with large glass windows and ergonomic furniture. Thanks to the continuous evolution of work offices, many companies now ensure that their interiors inspire both employees and their clients. 

Your office interior design can affect how your employees perceive their work environment; many company owners consider office design to be one of the key elements for their business success. As an example, the more convenient, welcoming, and efficient your office interior design is, the more likely your clients will feel comfortable there. The same goes for employees; working in an efficient and beautiful office can help to improve their emotional and physical health, leading to improved productivity and a more positive work attitude. 

Planning your office interior design should not be taken lightly. If you’re new to office designing and you don’t know where to start, here are six interior design tips that can serve as your guide throughout the designing process:

1. Plan To Maximize Space

Planning your office space is not only about décor, but also about providing enough coverage for your employees, office supplies, furniture, and clients. The more spacious your office is, the more organized it will look; a spacious office allows you to have separate areas for your employees, management and even recreation. An organized office space can also encourage an efficient workflow. When employees have enough room to complete their tasks, it can boost their productivity. Make sure your office desks, tables, and office chairs are arranged evenly throughout the space to give each employee the space they need for themselves and their office supplies. A tight budget shouldn’t be a hindrance to provide some sort of organization to your office. For instance, you can use pallets to build wooden crates as containers. That way, you still save money without sacrificing aesthetic and function.

2. Let Natural Light In

Lighting plays an essential role in achieving an efficient and appealing interior office design. The best lighting you can use for your office is natural light, thus, it’s vital that you make smart choices for your office blinds. Some blinds tend to limit your access to natural light, while others, such as semitransparent blinds, can maximize natural light usage by letting more in. You can browse reputable interior designers such as Orla Kiely Interior Designs for more inspiration about which type of office blind is suitable for the space you’ll be working with. The more daylight exposure you can provide in your office, the more chances it will increase your employees’ productivity. Daylight has been known to boost people’s mood, helping them to have a positive work attitude, and using natural light can also enhance your office interior design, making it livelier and more welcoming.

3. Incorporate Your Company’s Identity

Now that you’ve planned out your office layout and how you’re going to maximize the natural light, it’s time to think of ideas for designing your office’s theme and decor. The first thing you need to consider before settling on a design concept is your company’s identity, ask yourself how you want people to perceive your office when they first step inside. If your company is related to the fashion industry, it may be best to plan your office interiors to include recognizable elements of this. You can use colorful walls, prints, and accented furniture to convey that this office is all about fashion and make a statement through styles and colors. Meanwhile, if your company is in line with the law, finance, or marketing industries, it may be best if your office design is more formal and used muted tones to make sure that it conveys a serious and trustworthy business image. 

4. Invest In Good Furniture

In designing your office interior, don’t forget to consider your employees’ well-being, the best way to do this is by investing in good quality furniture. Generally, people working in offices spend around eight hours per day sitting at their desks, it’s very common for office workers to complain about back and neck pains due to this, if their workstations are not designed effectively. The best way to prevent injury and strain on your employees is to provide them comfortable and ergonomic chairs and desks to support their body and reduce eye strain. Not only will the right furniture help them work comfortably, it could also have a big impact on their productivity. 

5. Choose Colors Wisely

Your chosen colors can significantly impact how people feel in the office setting, so it’s essential that you choose them wisely. One way to choose the right colors is by using color psychology. Some studies have shown that colors may have the power to affect people’s mood, for instance, if you use blue for your office walls, it can convey a calming and peaceful vibe for the employees and clients. By contrast, if you choose to use red on your walls, it can give out an energetic vibe. Do your research and make sure you pick colors that align with your brand, while projecting the kind of energy you want in your office. 

6. Create Collaborative Spaces

It’s common for offices to host corporate meetings and client collaborations, when designing your office, make sure you set aside an area intended for these types of gatherings. An office interior designer can help you create an innovative layout that can maximize the floor space available to you, without feeling cramped. Moreover, you can optimize your office space layout by creating a multipurpose area, aside from being a meeting room, you can also use this for events and other company functions. When planning the décor for a multipurpose area, consider including round meeting tables, corkboard panels, whiteboards, and other materials required for business meetings or presentations. 

Office Interior Design Takeaways

Traditional office interior design has come a long way from dim cubicles, to more flexible office spaces that cater for efficiency, convenience and design. 

Don’t forget to incorporate these tips mentioned above, to help you create an appealing and efficient interior office design that both your employees and clients will love. Be creative and start planning your layout today!

Certified OfficeFinder SpecialistWe can help you find the office with just the right design for you, whether conventional or flexible space, we can help. Contact us today for a no-obligation discussion on how one of our local tenant representatives can help.

6 Differences Between Selling Commercial Real Estate And A Home

5 Differences Between Selling Commercial Real Estate And A HomeThe main difference between selling commercial real estate and residential real estate is the type and purpose of the property. This impacts the differences in selling styles.

Residential properties include single-family homes, apartments and townhouses. The owner of the property can live in the property or can rent it out space to enjoy rental income. There is typically an emotional element involved in residential real estate since it involves renting to individuals or families as their primary place of residence.

Commercial real estate refers to properties that are used for office, retail, industrial, and special purposes. There are also commercial properties used for residential purposes known as multi-family properties. The typical tenant of commercial real estate, other than multi-family, is a business or a corporation resulting in less of an emotional element.

Selling Differences

However, there are numerous differences between selling commercial real estate and residential real estate. The following comparisons provide a better idea of these differences.

1. Time to Sell

Recently, with the dirge in inventory for residential real estate, homes are selling within days of being listed, unlike selling commercial real estate which can take months to find the right investor.  There has also been a surge of residential property owners selling their homes to home buying companies such as Element Homebuyers and similar companies that offer fast home sale and immediate cash, are commission-free and eliminate the need to upgrade the home before listing.

2. Returns-On-Investment (ROIs)

The return on investment is what helps investors determine a property’s profitability. With that said, what’s the average ROI in the US real estate market? The S&P 500 Index can answer this.

According to the Index in 2019 before the pandemic has hit the world, The US has an average return on investment of 8.6%. Of course, it depends on the type of rental property. For instance, commercial real estate’s average return is 9.5%. On the other hand, residential rental properties have an average ROI of 10.6%.

Based on the data above, investing in residential real estate properties can be more  lucrative than buying and leasing commercial properties. However, it’s essential to note that those figures don’t apply to all properties. That’s because vacancy rate, property management costs, and location are factors that also influence ROI. 

Investors trying to compare residential and commercial properties should also look at other metrics, such as cap rate and cash on cash return.

3.  Commercial Tenants Have More Money

Recently, retailers have faced increasing competition from e-commerce stores. Online stores offer products at a more affordable price and in a more convenient manner for consumers. Think about Walmart and Amazon. It’s no wonder why the retail sector hasn’t been performing at its best worldwide. Since many retail stores have shut down, the prices of commercial rentals have dropped drastically. In addition, due to the pandemic, finding qualified tenants for a commercial space can take five to six months nowadays.

However, what’s good about commercial spaces is that despite the higher vacancy rate these days, the typical tenants are businesses and corporations. When dealing with companies and large corporations, they would tend to have more financial leeway to afford higher or commercial rates of the lease. They also tend to be better tenants of the property because they maintain the property and respect its rules.

4. Triple Net Leases

The third difference is that when selling commercial real estate to potential investors is  value of triple net leases that many commercial leases include. Under a triple net lease, the tenant directly handles and pays for all property expenses. These include real estate taxes, building insurance, and maintenance expenses. These payments are on top of paying for the rental fees. In these situations, the property owner’s only concern would be mortgages payments on the property, if there are any. 

While triple net leases favor the landlord, some tenants (companies or businesses) may prefer them because they’ll have more control over maintaining the building. Not to mention that triple net leases also bring more transparency than other lease types.

5. Longer Term Lease

Commercial property leases tend to be longer term as compared to residential property leasing. Home rentals typically have a term between six to 12 months. By contrast, it’s a common practice to lease commercial properties between five to 10 years.

This is an advantage and benefit that you can point out when selling commercial properties to real estate investors. Long-term leases would mean they don’t have frequent turnover costs. They don’t have to make those repainting and repair works too frequently each time a tenant leaves and a new one comes in. It also means lower vacancy rates, which means that there wouldn’t be too many months that their property isn’t earning money for them.

An added advantage and benefit of longer-term leases is that it goes into the cash flow performance of the property. Having long-term leases means there’s money coming in more regularly from month to month. 

Take note that the fair market value of commercial properties doesn’t depend on the next-door neighbor or adjacent property pricing followed in residential properties. The value of commercial real estate is determined by the amount of money that it generates. This is discussed next.

6. How Property Values Increase

The fifth difference that you can point out when selling commercial real estate is that the value of commercial properties isn’t primarily influenced by comparable neighboring properties. The fair market value of commercial real estate is primarily determined by its revenue generation. 

The cash flow earnings of commercial property have a direct impact and tend to increase the fair market value of the property. If a commercial property is leased out to a high income-generating business, then the property will increase in value much faster than a home.

By contrast, the fair market value of a home is largely dependent on the selling price of the neighboring home that was most recently sold in the vicinity. This gives the commercial real estate investor a more active role in increasing the value of the property by choosing a tenant with higher cash flow and returns, rather than just waiting for how much the neighbor’s property would be sold.

Selling Money Makers

In selling commercial real estate, you’re really selling to the prospective investor is a future flow of income, hopefully a potential money maker. More likely than not, it’s also the primary reason why they are looking into buying such property. So, paint a clear picture about income flow in the past and how much more money it can make in the future. In short, show them the money.

If you are interested in either buying or selling commercial real estate, we can help. Contact us to find out more.

4 Ways To Create A More Productive Work Space

After hiring a couple of employees and renting an office, it seems that you’ve done your part, but that’s not entirely true. Although you’ve done what’s necessary, it doesn’t hurt to go the extra mile by helping your employees settle in on their jobs and create a productive work space. After all, once they adapt to the business, their productivity will soar.

More productivity means more work done, and more work done means more money for the company. 

The best part is that you don’t necessarily have to guide them each step of the way. Creating favorable working conditions would be more than enough to help them become more comfortable, and that’s what this guide is all about. Below are four ways to breed productive employees through improving their workspace: 

1. Incorporate Natural Sceneries

You may have heard from somewhere or someone before that greeneries and natural light can improve your mood, and yes, it’s true. Humans have a desire to connect to nature, which is why a study has found that even just a minute with nature can lead to a feeling of relaxation, which may increase productivity. 

While it’s true that nature itself can lead to relaxation, there are other ways to make the workspace much closer to nature, and that’s by getting air filters that eliminate pollution. Of course, you can buy some plants and place them in your employees’ desks, but if you find a custom filter that pretty much does the job, there’s no need to bother with buying greeneries.

2. Provide Proper Equipment 

Surely it must be evident that one of the best ways to improve productivity is by providing the proper equipment. Employees may feel disheartened knowing that the business they’re working for cannot provide them with the necessary tools for the job, resulting in less productivity. 

The pieces of equipment you’ll need to prepare to differ according to what business you run. For most office jobs, employees must have their own desks and gadgets such as computers or laptops. Other than working equipment, you also have to consider buying equipment that brings comfort such as ergonomic chairs. 

3. Mind the Temperature 

Electrolytes, a compound that serves as energy for the body, deplete much faster in hot conditions. On the other hand, excessive coldness can lead to discomfort and even vulnerability to diseases. In other words, the temperature must be perfect. You can either use air conditioners during hot climates or heaters during the cold weather. 

4. Introduce Colors to the Office 

Is there a feeling of relaxation when you see the color blue all around you? Do you feel a sense of excitement when you’re surrounded by red walls? That’s probably because colors can affect a person’s mood, just like nature. 

For that reason, it’s a good idea to paint your office walls with a color that improves productivity, but which color? You may have already guessed it, but red is an excellent color since it keeps the heart pumping, which might be necessary to employees if they somehow feel bored during work hours. Blue is also a great alternative as it exudes a calming atmosphere, which can help your employees focus on their tasks.

Wrapping Up 

No matter how high the pay is or how nice you are to your employees, you can’t guarantee that they’ll become much more productive. What they need is a good productive work place, one that suits their needs and provides them with comfort. While it’s not an easy task, this guide should make it less complicated. However, remember that great things aren’t free, so don’t be afraid to invest in your business and your workforce. 

Certified OfficeFinder SpecialistAnd if you are looking for office space wher you can creat a productive work space, we can help with our network of local tenant reps. Contact us today to find out more. Our services are free to you! No obligation either.

Handling Workers Compensation and Injured Employees

Accidents happen, whether deliberate or by chance, and they are a serious issue in many workplaces. When sustaining work-related injuries care must be taken that workers are fairly compensated and no further harm comes to any side. That is where Workers Compensation plays a part.

Legal trouble concerning these issues can come in the form of employees exaggerating their injuries in order to be compensated much more or the employers trying to minimize the damage to avoid any compensation whatsoever. Both cases have been regularly encountered in the US judicial system.

The best solution is in the middle ground, where both parties are following their legal obligations and rights, but if needed you should be aware of how you can fight for your rights in case of injury.

Finding an Attorney

Even before anything bad happens you could consult a legal expert. From the start, when reviewing your contract with the employer you could ask a legal professional for an opinion if the terms for any injury compensation are agreeable. But in the worst-case scenario, where an injury has occurred, finding a good workers compensation attorney, like the ones at Arizona workers compensation attorney, can literally be a lifesaver. Having someone with experience fight to get your medical expenses covered is a huge deal in the US.

Workers compensation is usually seen only as a net loss in the employer’s books (and not as a human and worker right, as they should be), and as they are often unwilling to make such an expense they need to be threatened with a lawsuit sometimes, so as to make them respect the contract.

Educating and Preventing

Preventing injuries is the first step that needs to be thought out when organizing any job. Considering that blue-collar workers are at an inherent risk of sustaining serious injuries while operating machinery they need to be properly educated about the tools and materials they will be encountering. Though the number of fatal work injuries is relatively low, a much larger number of non-fatal injuries is present or even goes unrecorded if the worker is in the “exempt” category.

Education of employees and employers goes two ways – one is the education about their rights and obligations, as both parties have them defined by law and contract, and the other about safe working practices. The employer is supposed to know the workers’ limitations and not ask them to work beyond them, while the workers are supposed to be fully capable of safely working within their limitations and job description.

Immediate Response

In case of injury, the first response is the most critical in the long run. Reacting quickly and correctly to mitigate any serious or life-threatening injury is beneficial to every party involved and should therefore have top priority in such situations.

If, for example, a worker is badly hurt from a machine malfunction they should be administered first aid immediately, after which 911 should be called. If anyone present doesn’t know how to give proper first aid, 911 should be called first and they will give further instructions.

Filing Appropriate Paperwork

It is the injured employee’s responsibility to file a claim within one year of the injury. This can be done by filling a form at the doctor’s office or by obtaining a Worker’s Report of Injury. If no claim of injury is reported in one year since the accident happened the employer is exempt from providing compensation to the worker.

The employer is also required to submit an Employer’s Report of Injury, though that doesn’t count as a claim, only as a report. Employees should therefore be aware that, even though they do not need to submit a claim as soon as possible it must be done in a timeline manner as there is a limit on how long you can wait. All such claims and reports must be submitted to the ICA.

What to Do After Compensation and Recovery?

Waiting to be compensated can be a tricky period. A serious injury may put a worker out of line for a while and with less income but higher spendings due to medical bills compensation from insurance come as much-needed relief.

When returning to work afterwards there should be a period of adaptation so as to not make another mistake while operating a machine, for example. If all is well both the employer and employee will continue to have a professional relationship and will work out what caused the injury so that it doesn’t happen again.

Compensations for work-related injuries are a basic human right and should be available to everyone in the workforce. Even though nobody wants to get hurt it can still happen even to the best of us and knowing how to handle the injuries and compensation paperwork is a big part of being a responsible worker.

We can help you find the office space that meets all the safety requirements for your employees, whether conventional or flexible space, we can help. Contact us today for a no-obligation discussion on how one of our local tenant representatives can help.

Top 6 Fascinating Ideas on Renovating Your Office Space

Working in the same office space layout for many years is not refreshing, and sometimes a renovation is required. While the idea of renovating an office space is very exciting, the process may have several challenges. It is important to ensure that you have the right strategy when you are thinking of renovating your office space. For starters, it is important to have a flexible budget that will allow for any overheads to ensure that unavoidable overheads will not slow down your renovation process. There are services you can use like CostCertified to help you with your financial planning for the project. It is also essential to ensure that you already have a renovation idea before contacting your contractor ahead of the renovation. In most cases, it is not always easy to decide on the type of office layout you would like to have in your office. Fortunately, we have listed the top 6 ideas for renovating your office space in this piece.

1. Create a Collaborative Working Space

Creating a collaborative office space is one of the unique ways that you can design your office. In the recent past, most companies are incorporating this form of office design because it boosts teamwork in their organizations. Moreover, a collaborative layout is more spacious and more comfortable.

2. Break Out The Office Spaces

Break out space is essential in this modern era. Ideally, it is an office space that is not part of the normal working space. This space is helpful when someone needs some alone time to think about something. This is somewhere that someone can go and relax while at the same time thinking about major firm issues. In the long run, a breakout office space will enhance the productivity of your firm.

3. Create Private Workplaces

Adding a private workplace in your office plan is also an exceptional idea. It will create an additional space where the workers can go work from, for them to be more productive. Ideally, there is minimal noise in private workplaces, which would ensure that the worker concentrates on what they are doing. The private office space will enhance your firm’s productivity because your workers will have an ideal work area.

4. Invest in Desks

Generally, you and your employees spend a lot of time at the office, meaning that you should invest in things that will make you more comfortable in the office. For starters, you should ensure that you get modern desks when you are redesigning your office. Don’t fear to invest in quality desks that will enhance your comfort and that of your employees at the office because they will enable you to become more productive. Moreover, quality desks will help in preventing backaches.

5. Enhance Lighting

When redesigning your office, ensure that you create more space to allow your office space to get more sunlight. Sunlight will brighten up your office, and it will also make it look bigger.

6. Add Some More Bright Colors

This will serve the same purpose as allowing more sunlight to the office space. It will also boost the mood of your workers.

While renovating an office space may not be a smooth process, you should follow the tips we have outlined in this piece to make this process a no-brainer.

Certified OfficeFinder SpecialistAnd if you’d rather make a move, we can help you find the office with just the right renovations for you, whether conventional or flexible space, we can help. Contact us today for a no-obligation discussion on how one of our local tenant representatives can help.

Why Interior Design Matters When Looking For A New Office Space

As your business grows to scale, you may need a new office space to accommodate your staff and employees or to hold meetings with your increasing clients. In searching for new office space, however, you need to ensure that you carefully consider the design of its interiors. This article lists down some of the reasons why interior design matters when looking for a new office space.

Brand Identity

One of the primary reasons why interior design matters when looking for new office space is that it signifies your brand identity. In this case, a great helping hands in providing creative solutions for the office space are those companies that offer custom office signs. With these creative signs, you will be able to establish your brand in the space that you are interested in. In doing so, your clients, as well as the market that you are targeting will immediately recognize your brand as soon as they enter your office space.

Reflection of Values

The interiors of your office space also reflect the values that your brand is supporting. For instance, if you are a company that advocates caring for the environment or conserving energy, then your office space should be designed to reflect this value. In this case, you can consider an office space with large windows that allow natural light to enter. You can also view office space with a provision for creating a deck that you can decorate with plants and a calming landscape where your staff can lounge when they take a break.

Cohesive Branding

When it comes to the interior design of your office space, you need to keep your branding in mind. As much as possible, you need to be cohesive when designing it. For example, if your clients already recognize your brand because of the green color, which also represents nature, then make sure that your office space also features hues of green, accentuated by other colors that best complement it. This means that you need to choose an office space that is quite effortless to design for cohesive branding, already bearing the hues that you need.

Impact on Employees

Another reason why interior design matters when looking for new office space is that it can have a significant impact on your employees. Remember that your staff and employees are considered as one of the key factors essential in running a successful business venture. Without them, you may not be able to deliver quality products or services that your clients expect from your brand. Thus, they need to be comfortable and safe in the office space that you provide for them to carry out their tasks.

Boost Productivity

How the interiors of your office space are designed can either boost the productivity of your employees or lower their morale. For sure, as a business owner, you will prefer the former. Statistics show that when employees are comfortable in their office or when their office space supports light and positive environment, they are more likely to be productive and deliver the tasks expected of them. For this reason, check whether the office space you are interested in has provision for proper lighting.

Foster Health

Apart from boosting the productivity of your staff or employees, the office space that you choose can also either foster their health or be a risk. For instance, without proper ventilation, viruses can easily spread in the office, which means that as soon as one of your staff gets under the weather, expect that another one will follow suit. Thus, you need to ensure that the interiors of the office space you are considering has provisions for proper ventilation that you need to implement accordingly.

Increase in Revenue

When looking for new office space, interior design matters because it can increase your revenue significantly. This proves to be beneficial for any business venture because an increase in earnings doesn’t only mean more profit, but stability and growth as well. In this case, consider whether the office space you are interested in can be designed in a manner that will pique the interest of your clients or foster more efficient processes.

Attract Clients

How your office space is designed can either attract new clients or push them away. More often than not, before you can close a deal, you need to present to a prospect why they should go for your products or services. Since these presentations are usually done in the office, you need to invite your target clients accordingly. As soon as they set foot in your office, they should already have a good feeling because of how your office space is designed. They should not feel cramped or restrained in any way. In this manner, you are increasing your chances of closing a deal with every prospective client or whenever you conduct presentations.

Efficient Processes

Aside from being able to attract the attention of potential clients and keeping them engaged, how your office space is designed can also foster more efficient processes. For instance, it can be a waste of time if your employees need to travel to a different floor to conduct a meeting. Conversely, if the desks of your employees are arranged in a manner that will allow them to easily collaborate, then ideas can be transformed into fruitful actions in no time. In this case, you get to enjoy a more efficient process in conducting meetings leading to great ideas that can eventually turn into a profitable outcome.

You should significantly consider the interior design of an office area when you are looking for a new space for your business or company. The reason behind this is that your office space will reflect your values, as well as your brand identity. It also has an immense impact on your staff and employees when it comes to their productivity and health. The design of your office space can also contribute to the revenue of your business. For all these reasons, you should heavily consider interior design when looking for a new office space.

Certified OfficeFinder SpecialistWe can help you find the office with just the right design for you,whether conventional or flexible space, we can help. Contact us today for a no-obligation discussion on how one of our local tenant representatives can help.

4 Ways To Make Sure Your Business Has Plenty Of Working Space While Coworking

A new workstation setup can affect a employees’s performance and mood. That is why when choosing workspaces for your employees, you need to ensure that they feel comfortable in the area. The working environment needs to create a positive ambience, influencing the work performed by the employees in a good way. Having plenty of working space in the office to move freely and comfortably can also help boost the productivity of employees.  

Many businesses choose to build or rent small offices for their employees. Some companies also take advantage of using coworking space to optimize the cost of operating their businesses. Jeremy Ellis from Launchpad says that the prices of coworking space is around $600 per month since the start of 2020 despite the rise of many companies adapting to new normal and remote working practices.

Individual’s and team space within a coworking space tend to be small, so how can you ensure that the small space is maximized for your employees? Here are four ways you can increase the working space of your business: 

1. Choose The Right Furniture 

Some coworking spaces aren’t fully furnished, and you need to buy furniture for your workforce. This is an excellent opportunity for you to choose furniture pieces that are compact yet functional. It’s important that you know the total office area before buying any furniture to maximize the space.  

Aside from that, it would be best if you considered the needs of your employees when buying furniture. Do they need a desk with drawers? How much storage space does each employee need? Are you planning to have a common area for meetings? Choosing the right furniture will not only complete the working spaces for you and your employees, but these will also be critical in making the room look more significant, professional, and functional.  

2. Go Paperless 

Documents and other different papers fill up storage spaces in any office quickly. If you want to clear up significant space to store other items or convert it to an additional workspace, you should consider going paperless.  

By going paperless for business, you won’t have any more problems with consuming resources and money on documents. Not only will you be able to cut down on paper costs, but you will also eliminate the clutter in your office. That means no more filing folders and files everywhere! There will also be no need for mailing the papers or hardcopy files. The time you save by going paperless for business can give you more time to do more important things like running your business, improving your marketing strategies through an online system, and cultivating a desirable work culture. 

Aside from that, uploading to the cloud is also one of the effective ways to store private information. This is also essential to protect the confidentiality of these materials. Make sure that the passwords are given to people who are allowed to access the documents.

3. Choose The Right Layout 

The first factor that you need to consider when thinking about maximizing office space is the layout. You need to think about your office design and make sure that all of the furniture pieces that you will be using will fit into the allotted area.  

One of the best tips to use when arranging your office layout to maximize the space is to place furniture on the edges of the walls. It would be best if you aim to have an open space concentrated in one area to make the small office space look less confining. You can add an area rug in the middle area to avoid a cluttered view. 

4. Provide Enough Storage Space 

Having enough storage space is one of the best ways to keep everything in the office organized and to avoid clutter. When choosing an office storage space, you should consider the needs of your business and your employees. You must provide your employees with lockers so they can place their personal items on these cabinets. It’s also a good idea to give locks so they can keep private things safe.  

You should also choose the appropriate storage space for every item that needs to be kept. There are file cabinets for documents, and there are also cabinets or boxes to store some office supplies. To keep everything organized and reduce the clutter, it would be helpful to use labels to keep everything in the right place.  

Summary 

There are plenty of ways to maximize office space without breaking the bank. By staying organized and providing the right furniture and storage space, you create a lot of working space for your employees even when you have a small office. Aside from that, it would be best if you consider going paperless so you won’t have to stack and store paperwork that uses a large amount of space in the office. Maintaining a small office space and maximizing the area will help you reduce business costs while increasing your employees’ productivity

And if you are looking for office space, coworking or traditional, we can help. Contact us today to find out about our no cost service.

 

 

10 Security Tips to Protect Your Company’s Data

Hackers and online criminals are working day and night to access our data. They look for vulnerabilities in our software, and also in us. People have had their identities stolen and sensitive information accessed. Even the US government is vulnerable as demonstrated with the most recent series of attacks on sensitive servers. When this happens to a company it can be disastrous on a larger scale. Many small companies end up closing due to the financial implications of what has happened.

The term ‘paperless office’ has meant that more and more business information is being moved online. That increases the pickings for cybercriminals. When hackers are getting more and more clever, what can be done to protect company data? Let’s find out right now with these 10 security tips.

Consider Third-Party Hosting

When this option is chosen, the responsibility for data storage, updating software, and maintaining security is moved to the host company. If someone chose to use QuickBooks cloud hosting their data would be stored on a dedicated server. The advantage can be that a business is not sharing the host site with another company. With shared servers, both companies need to maintain their IT security. If one is hacked, the other company will also be hacked.

Other benefits of such hosting are that passwords and usernames are kept private, and there is automatically encrypted data backup.

Draft An IT Security Policy

One of the biggest security vulnerabilities that companies have is their staff. Employees should be advised not to leave their computer screens unlocked when unattended. USB sticks and hard drives should be securely locked away.

Businesses should incorporate their IT policy into staff employment documentation. This should include an outline of the responsibilities, accountability, and consequences of security breaches. Training sessions should be conducted as part of the staff induction process, and also on a rolling basis.

Training should also be given on creating and maintaining effective passwords, identifying phishing emails, and not downloading files for personal use. Staff should also be warned about using public wifi or reading private company information in public places.

Use A Virtual Private Network (VPN)

VPN software puts an encrypted (coded) layer around the person’s online activities. End to end encryption is where a message sent by one person is encoded, and it can only be unencrypted by the valid recipient. Website access and data exchange become secure as a result.

Without a VPN, staff may be vulnerable when working remotely. The wifi hotspots found in coffee houses, airports, or hotels frequently connect to insecure networks. This means it’s easier for hackers to access the data.

Install A Firewall

Companies have these as external hardware devices or internal software. They are built into Apple and Windows. Firewalls act as security guards day and night, observing all incoming and outgoing activities. They instantly report issues and block them.

There are a host of unwelcome visitors that firewalls are designed to stop, ranging from spyware, adware, viruses, and worms.

Use Antivirus Software

This is designed to supplement the effectiveness of the firewall. Defender software is installed within Windows 8 and 10. This can do the job effectively in most cases, but there is always the risk that such things as ransomware may be able to bypass it.

Warnings can also be provided by antivirus software that sites are insecure or have known risks.

Have A Strong Password System

A study found that from January to March 2019, 74% of security breaches related to passwords getting into the hands of the public.

Employees should never keep written passwords on their desks or share them with others; neither should they use the same one for different applications. Obvious passwords should be avoided too, including passwords, 12345 or previously used ones. They should be at least eight characters long and include letters, numbers, and special characters such as $£*&.

Password management software is well worth considering as it creates the passwords for you, stores them all in one place, and even logs in to programs for you.

Securely Dispose Of Data

If a computer, memory stick, external drive or laptop are thrown in the rubbish there is the chance that someone could take it. Even deleted files or reformatted drives are unable to stop criminals from gaining access to the data.

Fortunately, there are external companies that can securely dispose of computer equipment. When one looks at the financial risks involved, this could be well worth the money.

Perform Updates And Allow Patches

It may not be hard to imagine that a small item of software may have security vulnerabilities that need regularly addressing. More alarmingly, there are similar issues with big players such as Windows, Adobe PDF readers, Microsoft Office, Google Chrome, or Firefox.

Cybercriminals are constantly searching for blind spots and loopholes, so when they have discovered it’s necessary for an update or patch to be installed to keep them out.

Set Up Two Factor Authentication

This can be created for use when people log in to such applications as Facebook, Gmail, or Evernote. It can also be utilized when making online payments.

It acts as a ‘prove who you are’ question. Someone may receive a code by text that they need to enter into the computer before they can proceed. Alternatively, they will receive a phone call requiring a secure code.

Create Data Backups

USB sticks and external drives can be stolen or lost. Computers can break and websites can be hacked. When data is stored online there is an extra layer of protection.

Companies frequently create disaster recovery plans. They should include what to do when IT equipment is destroyed or a cyber attack has been effective. It’s no good waiting until it happens before such things are considered.

There are a host of actions and policies that can be put in place to protect a company’s data. When it is all adopted, a secure wall can be created to keep the villains out. Whilst many of these suggestions will cost money, the alternative can be unthinkable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buying, Renting, or Leasing Office Space?

deciding to buy, rent, or lease office space?Setting up an office is quite a task. From deciding the location to furnishing the office, it is time-consuming and requires a lot of effort. In addition to this, moving your office to a new area is labor-intensive.

This task is best left to the experts. If you are moving to a new office, consider this office moving checklist pdf to prepare you for the move.

When setting up an office, you have the option to buy, rent, or lease office space. If you are considering these options, it is always best to get a professional on your team to make sure you avoid any costly mistakes. Each of these choices has advantages as well as disadvantages.

Buying Office Space

Buying a property requires capital. Most small to medium sized businesses lack the resources to purchase office space or they choose to use their capital to grow thier businesses. However, for larger companies and corporations, buying an office space is an investment many choose to make.

Pros

  • Mortgage payments that will not increase.
  • Mortgage payments add to equity.
  • Appreciation over the long term.
  • You can rent it out excess office space and benefit from an additional source of income.

Cons

  • Buying requires a large amount of capital investment.
  • Opportunity cost of that capital investment.
  • Difficult to scale up in case of an expanding business.
  • You are responsible for repairs and maintenance, taxes and insurance.

Renting Office Space

In renting office space, it is usually a shorter-term period. You have the option to rent the space on a month-to-month basis or for a year or two. As with any contract for space, make sure to review the agreement thoroughly.

Pros

  • Allows for more flexibility in length of term.
  • Businesses have the option to relocate according to their needs.
  • Renting does not require a large investment.
  • The money is not tied up in the real estate and can be invested in the business in another way.

Cons

  • Monthly payments will increase over time with renewals.
  • Landlord may choose not to renew forcing you to move.

Leasing Office Space

Leasing office space is for a longer term period. Usually 2 – 10 years.

According to Statista.com, tech companies prefer leasing instead of buying a commercial property. Despite COVID-19 hampering business growth, tech companies were able to lease about 1.2 million square feet in the United States alone.

Pros

  • Monthly rental payments will be consistant for a longer period than renting office space.
  • Less capital is needed to lease office space than if you were to buy it.
  • The landlord is typically responsible for repair and maintenance of your office.
  • Leasing a property offers tax deductions.
  • At the end of the leasing period, you have the option to leave or renew the contract. So it offers some growth flexibility.

Cons

  • If you renew a lease, the terms of the contract may change, and rent may increase.
  • You have to comply with the requirements of the landlord.

Conclusion

Deciding on buying, renting, or leasing a property, is a big decision. A company’s business goals and growth prospects should be cinsidereed in making a suitable choice. In addition to this, the location of the office, the terms of a contract, the duration of renting/leasing, requirements of your employee, facilities, and other factors must be considered. Hence, you should take your time in deciding.

it is always best to get a commercial real estate professional on your team when making the buy, rent, or lease office space decsion to make sure you avoid any costly mistakes. This is the type of work they do day in and day out. They know what they are doing and represent you. The biggest mistake you can make is not having a professional on your team! Find one here.

 

4 Questions to Ask When Looking for Small Business Insurance

 

Protect Bookkeeping Office

Do you have a small business? If so, you will quickly come to realize that business insurance is essential to safeguard your investments and your enterprise as a whole. Here are a few vital questions to ask when looking for quotes.

What type of cover do I need?

This is the most critical question to ask when searching for the right small business coverage. The reality is that business insurance requirements vary dramatically from enterprise to enterprise and are usually based on the size of your business, where it is located, and the nature of what it does. Most organizations operating within the same industry will have similar needs when it comes to commercial coverage.

It is recommended that all small businesses consider signing up for General Liability insurance which protects against any unexpected accidents or property damage that may occur on the company’s premises.

If you are uncertain in terms of what you need and you are looking for some expert advice, it can help to approach experts such as those at Next Insurance online. They are able to guide you in terms of how to ensure maximum coverage and peace of mind.

Should I get General Liability insurance or Professional Liability insurance?

You should consider getting both, as they are quite different. Professional Liability insurance protects against negligence claims and any mistakes made by you or your employees when on the job. In contrast, General Liability insurance protects against accidents and damage to property.

If you have both working in your favor, you can be sure that your business will be sufficiently protected against most threats. Luckily, several reputable insurance providers will offer business owners package deals that include both General and Professional Liability insurance at a lower cost.

Do I need Workers’ Compensation Insurance?

If you have any employees, the chances are good that you will need Workers’ Compensation. However, the requirements surrounding this type of commercial insurance vary somewhat from state to state. Texas is currently the only state in the United States that does not require a business to take out Workers’ Compensation by law.

Workers’ Compensation insurance provides protection for both a business and its employees relating to situations revolving around accidents in the workplace, employee illness, etc. It covers costs such as loss of income if an employee suffers an injury that renders them unable to work for a specific time, as well as medical expenses brought about as a result of a workplace accident.

How do I Obtain a Certificate of Insurance (COI)?

In the past, it was extremely challenging to get hold of a Certificate of Insurance. Now, a few insurance providers have streamlined the process so that you can get your proof of insurance quickly, affordably, and online for maximum convenience. Remember – you will need a COI when approaching financial institutions for funding, leasing a property, or partnering with another business. Plus, it also plays a significant role in building trust among your employees and clients, so be sure to display it proudly where it can be seen and acknowledged.

You will also most likely need to provide your COI to your landlord. Most leases require a certain amount of liability insurance with the landlord co-insured. Others may even require casualty insurance. A good tenant rep, like the ones we have at OfficeFinder can help you negotiate the insurance clauses in a new lease.

Hope this helps in finding the perfect insurance fit for your business!