As a social enterprise it’s important to recognise when your work space is holding you back.
Offices that are getting too small, are too far off the beaten track or costing you a fortune not only make a significant dent in your pocket but also become counterproductive.
If you’re running out of space, or missing opportunities because your customers can’t find you, it could be time to move on. Much like moving house, or buying a new car, sometimes it’s necessary to upgrade, and these 5 signs could mean it’s time to relocate your social enterprise:
1. You’re Running Out of Space
If people are having to share desks or the filing cabinets are overflowing, you probably need to invest in bigger premises.
While it’s great that your social enterprise is performing so well, cramming everyone into a space that’s far too small will only lead to a dip in productivity in the long run.
Taking on new staff, purchasing new equipment or simply needing more space to accommodate your clients will fill up your once sparse premises quicker than you’d think.
Whether you choose to undertake an occupancy study or the cramped conditions are clear to see, you’ll know when the time is right to move on.
2. It’s Costing You a Fortune
If your social enterprise needs office space or a retail unit, rental costs and rates are unavoidable.
Unfortunately, enterprises often find that they’re spending too much of their profits on quarterly rental payments, business rates and even service charges.
If you can’t afford the premises you’re in, the message is simple: find somewhere more affordable.
You can save money on premises by sharing space with other social enterprises, choosing a less central location or only having a small office that’s boosted by the use of distance workers and ad hoc meeting rooms when you need them.
3. Your Location Simply Isn’t Working
Some social enterprises work best in the hearts of communities, while others can operate from anywhere.
Depending on your offering, your location will have a direct impact on your overall success. For instance, if you rely on footfall, you’ll need to be in a high street environment which will typically cost you more than an out of town location. If, on the other hand, you need space for lots of car parking, a workshop or a storage unit, an industrial park will probably suit you better.
4. Your Building Just Isn’t Working for You
Some office spaces will be able to adapt as your enterprise grows, but others, sadly, won’t.
Worse still, some may need repairs or work undertaking to make them safe and habitable, which the landlord may not be willing to undertake. In that scenario, you might be fighting a losing battle and it’s probably time to take your enterprise elsewhere.
5. Your Staff Keep Leaving
Finding the right location is not just important for your clients and customers, it’s also important for your staff.
If you’re so far out of town that there are no public transport options, your staff may struggle to reach you. Keep in mind that younger employers on lower wages may not have access to a car and will rely on public transport for their daily commute.
Of course, some social enterprises will only work in remote locations, and must attract staff that are willing to travel. Despite this, if enterprises of that kind find they have an unnaturally high staff turnover, it could be time to move on.
Wherever you choose to base your social enterprise, Inspire2Enterprise are on hand to offer guidance and advice to assist with every aspect of your business.