Business is booming, and your company is growing by leaps and bounds! It’s a great problem to have, but running out of space in a current location can create some real challenges for businesses.
That’s why knowing how to answer the question, “What happens when space becomes a real problem?” is key to continued success and growth. Below are four suggestions that can help a growing business know how to handle a lack of space.
- Brainstorm Operations and Keep All Options Open
Before taking any steps to address a space shortage in a business, it is important for the management team to gather and brainstorm about the current state of affairs. In other words, take time to consider whether changes in the operating model can and/or should be made that would affect available space.
It is easy to get caught in a “because it’s always been done that way” rut and fail to look at the big picture. However, by taking time to evaluate each and every process, you may be surprised at how revamping certain operations and procedures may open up additional space.
Of course, always obtain input from those most immediately affected by lack of space—the workers who spend their days doing the jobs that keep your business running. Ask for their opinions and truly listen and you might be surprised at how effective their recommendations are.
- Move Noncritical and Non-Immediate Assets to a Storage Facility
For many businesses, space becomes consumed by noncritical and non-immediate assets such as long-term inventory, stored equipment, files and records, holiday decorations, and other items that aren’t needed on a regular basis. That is why it’s important to obtain off-site storage space for these items and keep them accessible when needed but out of your way on a daily basis.
When looking for off-site storage, it’s helpful to work with a company that understands the needs of businesses. In addition, take into consideration whether you will need climate controlled space or have other special needs, and find out if a potential storage space operator can accommodate these needs before signing an agreement.
- Reconfigure Existing Office Space
When space becomes limited, it’s helpful to take a closer look at office utilization. You may find that a lot of space is wasted by the inefficient staffing of offices. Instead of having one or two employees per office, for example, staffing with three or four workers may make better sense.
However, always be conscientious of your actions and how they affect worker productivity and morale. Doubling up workers in a given space without considering how they interact as well as how individual privacy is affected could cause problems. Simply pushing around existing furniture may not be a workable solution.
Instead, be willing to invest in new furniture that better suits a more compact office environment. Cubicles are available in all sizes and types, and you may be able to delight your staff by providing them with a modern, reconfigured layout, even if it means having more workers in a given space.
- Negotiate for Additional Space with Your Landlord
Depending on where your facility is located, you may have available space located literally next door. In most instances, your landlord will be more than pleased to lease additional space to you, but be careful you don’t spend more than necessary. A few shrewd negotiating tactics can save you a lot of money.
For example, be sure the landlord knows you are exploring additional options for expansion, and this will help ensure they provide a competitive lease for you. In addition, when looking at lease expiration options, try to line up the dates for both your existing space and any future space. That will prevent you from having to handle two separate leases when it comes time for signing a new lease or vacating.
If you’re trying to solve a storage dilemma, don’t fret. It’s a problem you can overcome with good planning and by trusting your employees to help manage the process.