Archive for the ‘Business Advice’ Category

Creating a Healthy and Productive Working Environment

December 2nd, 2021

Eight hours per day, 4 or 5 days per week: the average office worker spends tens of thousands of hours at work over the course of their career.

In our last blog post, we covered 5 ways to create a great office culture. Today, we’re building on these ideas and exploring some of the important steps that businesses can take to create a healthy and productive working environment for this culture to thrive in.

Because of the significant amount of time that people spend at work, employers have a duty of care towards their staff. Among other things, this entails going the extra mile to create the healthiest possible workplace environment. Here are some tips to help employers build a more productive work environment.

Adopt a holistic approach to workplace health

Health isn’t just physical; it has psychological components too. A holistic approach to health in the workplace means paying attention to:

  •  Physical health: Health and safety, ergonomic furniture, wellness amenities, etc.
  •  Psychosocial health: Relationships between co-workers, management style, communication, positive values, flexible hours.
  •  Development: Providing professional development opportunities and incentives to be productive and set new goals.

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5 Ways to Create a Great Office Culture

November 4th, 2021

There’s no doubt that a healthy organizational culture is one of the greatest assets any company could have. Employee engagement, motivation, retention, and talent attraction are greatly influenced by company culture.

But culture can be an abstract concept. How exactly can a healthy corporate culture be cultivated in an office environment? In this article we’ll look into five ways you can do so.

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Cost of an Office Fit-Out or Renovation in the USA

July 21st, 2021

Office renovations can help create a more productive workplace and support a business’s branding strategy. However, these projects can have a significant impact on capital expenditure. Calculated per rentable square foot (RSF), fit-out and renovation costs went ranged from $90 to $220/RSF in 2019-20, depending on location, office size, cost of labor, and industry sector – since some businesses (such as tech companies) require fit-outs to higher and more costly specifications.

What follows is a breakdown of the costs involved in renovating an office in the United States. *

Construction Costs

These costs involve the removal, addition or alteration of physical elements in a building, office floor or office unit. Construction costs include materials and labor, as well as fees charged by contractors, and they serve as the biggest expense in fit-out projects – accounting for 50% to 70% of the total cost.

Average costs are $90/RSF. Depending on location, they can be as high as $139/RSF or as low as $54/RSF.

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Office Features to Look Out for in the Second Half of 2021

June 23rd, 2021

The US office market has been dramatically transformed by the changes to work practices and mobility restrictions implemented throughout the course of 2020 and early 2021. Whilst it was predicted that the market would slowly rebound starting in recent months, the demands of office occupiers will have changed substantially since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Below is a brief overview of the main things to look for in an office space during the second half of 2021.

Office Layout

Flexible spaces

Flexibility remains a key consideration when choosing an office, not only in terms of lease terms, but also office layouts. Many office-based companies are still unsure about their ability to retain staff in the face of reduced revenue, combating this uncertainty by implementing rotating shifts or flexible work hours, two factors which have ultimately led to businesses struggling to identify the total headcount in the office at any given time.

This uncertainty will lead to an increase in demand for modular spaces that can be adjusted depending on the number of people present in the workplace. These kinds of dynamic layouts have been an option for several years, often going hand in hand with trends towards multi-functional office spaces. Some of the main elements that typify flexible workspaces include:

  •  Blurred indoor to outdoor transitions.
  •  Movable walls and room dividers.
  •  Lightweight or mobile office furniture.
  •  Adjustable or movable lighting.

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A Guide to Subleasing in The United States

April 22nd, 2021

A sublease is an agreement between a party who already hold a lease to a property and a separate party looking to rent the property in question, whether that be partly or wholly. For example, a business who leases five floors of office space in a building may look to sublease one of those floors, in the event that they downsize their workforce prior to the end of the initial lease. The party who holds in initial lease is known as the sublessor, whilst the third party looking to occupy a part of the leased space is the sublessee.

How to Sublease

The first step is to check whether you need your landlord’s written permission to sublease a property. This should be outlined in your lease agreement. If subleasing is permitted, the agreement may also specify whether you’re required to give notice to your landlord.

Next, make sure you’re familiar with the legal aspects of subletting in your area, since every state has its own sublet laws that take precedence over lease agreements. You can check state-by-state details here.

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Introducing Pets into the Workplace, a Smart Idea or Barking up the Wrong Tree?

January 11th, 2021

The office can be a stressful place at times, particularly when deadlines are looming and clients are expecting results fast. These stresses can result in negativity, tension, anxiety, and an overwhelming sense of dread, feelings which can ultimately impact productivity and mental wellbeing. Companies across the globe have worked tirelessly to combat these workplace stresses, introducing comprehensive strategies to improve the wellbeing of their employees and cultivate a healthy working environment. Introducing pets into the workplace is one such plan that can, if implemented correctly, positively impact employees by improving morale, reducing stress, easing anxiety, and increasing job satisfaction.

Amazon is a prime example of a global company that has successfully introduced pets through their long-standing tradition of bringing dogs into their Seattle headquarters, a space which is now home to as many as 7,000 dogs on any given workday! The example set by large companies such as Amazon has inspired countless other businesses to adopt similar initiatives, resulting in pets becoming increasingly common in the workplace, particularly in millennial-driven organizations and  creative offices that encourage collaboration.

But what exactly do you need to know before introducing your furry friend to the workplace and what benefits or downsides can come from bringing your pet to work?

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The Differences Between Class A, B, & C Office Space in the USA

January 5th, 2021

There are several types of office space in the USA. These properties are classified according to their quality standards and amenities, using the classification system developed by the Building Owners and Managers Association. This system establishes three main types of office space: Class A, Class B, and Class C. Here are the defining features of each Class:

Class A Office Space

These properties are characterized as having the highest quality standards, amenities, and fixtures. Common features include top-tier HVAC and lighting systems, the latest telecommunications infrastructure, and often have unique design or architectural traits. Because of their high standards, Class A offices are typically (but not always) in new or trophy buildings with high-quality road and mass transit connections. Location also plays a role in Class A offices, as they are often located in sought-after areas such as Capitol Hill, Downtown Los Angeles, and The Loop in Chicago.

Class B Office Space

Class B properties are a middle-of-the-road option for office-based businesses. They are a step below Class A properties in terms of design, systems, and infrastructure, but they are still functional spaces that can accommodate a wide range of office operations. Depending on their location and potential, some Class B buildings are acquired by property management or investment firms and refurbished to Class A standards. Many of these offices are located in buildings that are between 10 and 20 years old.

Class C Office Space

Class C offices are typically located in older buildings (20 years+) outside of the CBD or other highly sought-after business areas. These properties may have outdated infrastructure, fixtures, and amenities, with some requiring partial renovation.

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How To Help Your Business Survive COVID-19

March 25th, 2020

The Coronavirus pandemic is a serious threat to our country and the rest of the world, and the US government and the CDC (Center for Disease Control) are working to slow down the spread of the disease. It is also a threat to the US economy with businesses of all shapes and sizes already feeling the impact.

So what can you do to increase your business’ chances of surviving throughout this difficult time?

Check Your Cash Flow – One of the first things businesses need to look at is their cash flow forecasts. Include details like supplier payments, employee wages, taxes, property rents etc. The Coronavirus pandemic is like nothing we have ever seen before, so factoring in as many variables as possible can help prepare for the worst. To be forewarned is to be forearmed.

Shore up Supplier Relationships – Another essential thing to do is to speak to your suppliers. If you have a good relationship with your regular suppliers this will help a lot, as it is in their interest as well that your business survives so you can continue to be a loyal customer.

Create Special Offers – On the same note, speak to your own customers and clients. Come up with ideas to offer discounts, upgrades and freebies. Is there a way you can adjust your pricing and terms? Retaining your loyal client base is essential to the on-going survival of your business.

Other Things You Can Do – Speak to the bank, call the tax office, and ask for extended payment plans and timings if necessary. Take a look through your current terms and conditions and update and adapt where necessary. You may need to update your cancellation clauses, and service or delivery lead times. It is essential to ensure that you and your business are not overly exposed at this current time.

The CDC (Center for Disease Control has provided this Business Pandemic Influenza Planning Checklist with specific actions businesses are advised to take and includes the following steps:

  • Plan for the impact of a pandemic on your business
  • Plan for the impact of a pandemic on your employees and customers
  • Establish policies to be implemented during a pandemic
  • Allocate resources to protect your employees and customers during a pandemic
  • Communicate to and educate your employees
  • Coordinate with external organizations and help your community

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Growing your business in Las Vegas

March 17th, 2020

Las Vegas is one of the most visited cities in the United States and has managed to grow as a distinct economic hub despite its location on the Mojave Desert. The city was originally established as a stopping point for important trade routes between the Midwest and the Pacific Coast, and eventually grew to become one of the 30 most populated cities in the nation.

Las Vegas Business Environment

The local industry is clearly dominated by tourism, hospitality, leisure, and entertainment. There is also a large number of government and healthcare agencies, along with professional and business services firms, that support tourism-related activities.

Las Vegas is an internationally renowned hub for business conferences, meetings, and conventions, and the business events industry supports more than 66,000 jobs in the city. Since 2012, efforts and investment have been put into building a strong technology sector in Las Vegas, offering financial support and real estate discounts to tech companies. However, the tech talent pool is still small relative to other cities where similar initiatives have been implemented. A similar trend is evident across the state of Nevada, where the tech sector barely accounts for 2.5 percent of all economic activity. Read the rest of this entry »

Setting Up A Business In Venice, Florida

October 1st, 2019

The city of Venice is located on Florida’s west coast, approximately 20 miles south of Sarasota and 60 miles away from Fort Myers. Administratively, Venice is part of Sarasota County and has a permanent population of over 22,000 people, although this figure increases during the winter months, when many snowbirds move to the city temporarily.

Key Industries and Employers in Venice, Florida

In its origins, the city’s economy relied on agriculture, fishing, and trade, but currently Venice has a diverse economy that has so far been able to weather the global economic downturn. The largest industries are healthcare and educational services, followed by retail, trade, accommodation and food services, finance, insurance, and manufacturing. Tourism and recreation are also essential to Venice’s economy due to the city’s seaside location and proximity to several natural reserves.

Key employers in Venice include manufacturing firms PGT Industries, which was named one of Florida’s best employers by Forbes (with over 2,800 employees) and Tervis Tumbler, Venice Regional Bayfront Health, Bon Secours Venice Healthcare, and Publix Supermarkets.

Venice has seen a marked increase in the job market over this last year (2019) of 2.6%, with only a slightly lower unemployment rate (3.3%) than in the rest of the US (3.9%). Predictions show future job growth over the next decade to be just over 42%. Venice resident’s average income comes in at just under $40,000 a year, which is higher than the average income across the US and currently stands at just under $30,000 annually. Read the rest of this entry »