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From the Field
4 Rules of Thumb to Remember When Downsizing an Office

Historically, most businesses approached relocation because they needed more space. However, with all the changes in the workplace brought on by COVID-19, many are now choosing to downsize or decommission a portion of their offices. Our years of experience in this arena have shown that when you transition from a larger floor plan to a smaller one, managing configuration, clutter, and simply having enough space for everyone can be challenging. Take a look at some general rules of thumb we suggest our clients keep in mind when they prepare for downsizing.

1. Transition Hard Data to the Cloud and Go Paperless Where Possible

In the digital age, the need for paper documentation and data is growing more obsolete. You can convert paper to digital files and back up those files to servers in the cloud. Therefore, you can eliminate the space necessary for storing paper documents, but you may also eliminate the in-house data storage systems. In cases where the hard-copy documents need to be retained, outsource the storage to a professional records management company.

2. Update Your Remote Working Policies

Remote working models have become more of a norm in the last few years. More than four million workers spend their days working remotely in the United States, and 16 percent of businesses now only hire remote workers. So, if you need to downsize, it may be worth considering if you can transition part of your workforce to remote positions or utilize some aspect of a hybrid model. This makes it possible to have fewer in-office employees, which means less space consumed daily and fewer workstations needed.

3. Take a Minimalist Approach to Furnishings

While minimalism is often associated with residential spaces, you can apply the same techniques to office space. According to Elle Decor magazine, minimalism is about form, focus, and functionality. This is important to remember as you pick furniture pieces for the new, smaller office space. Look at:

  • How pieces are formed—do they take up more space than necessary?
  • How pieces are focused—do they attract too much visual interest?
  • How pieces function—do they serve a specific purpose?

By being more mindful of the types of furnishings you bring into the new office space, you can cut down on wasted space.

4. Check Out Storage Solutions in Place of Commercial Space

In some cases, like storing hardcopy records offsite, it can be financially advantageous to seek commercial storage for additional items or inventory rather than to rent a larger space than necessary. For example, if you have extra furniture that you have to keep on hand, you can place those items in storage cheaper than renting an office with a storage area. Likewise, if your office keeps flexible furniture inventory on hand for moves, adds and changes, you might consider storing it in off-site locations, as well.

Find Help with Relocating Your Office

Whether downsizing or upgrading, moving a commercial office can be a challenge. Be sure to enlist the help of our workplace solutions experts or professional office movers who can make the process much easier along the way. Reach out to get an up-front moving quote to get started.

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