Instant offices are a great way to get into an office space or a new business started quickly. Instant offices (sometimes called ‘serviced offices’ or ‘flexi offices’) offer flexibility and options that you just don’t get from leasing or renting office space.
You may be in the process of setting up a new business and are looking for office space in the Brisbane area, or your lease may be running out in your current location and you’re looking for some more flexible options for office space.
"An instant office should be comfortable, flexible and enable every business to be more productive. It should be a space where great things happen and work gets done!"
Carol Bailey, Managing Director
Whatever the reason you’re looking into an instant office, there’s no doubt going to be a list of questions you will have and possibly many things you haven’t thought of. That’s why we’ve put together this article about everything you need to know about setting up an instant office!
If there’s something we haven’t covered in this article or you have questions about our services, please feel free to call us on 1800 629 143 or contact us.
Location, Location, Location
When setting up an instant office you will really want to take into consideration the location and how convenient this is – not only for you, but for potential clients and customers also. Many serviced offices will be conveniently located close to a central CBD area but you may want it to be close to public transport or a particular facility.
Keep in mind that you will be travelling to this office every day and spending a majority of your time here throughout the week, so ensuring that your instant office is in a convenient location is a must.
Think about your technology requirements
There are many common things that you will need to run a successful office – email, phones, internet, etc. Most instant office services will offer these, but what about other IT requirements you may need, for example your own personal voicemail, hands free phones, conference call facilities, flip charts, white boards, smart TV’s and even something as simple as air conditioning?
It’s worth finding out about all the services that are offered and make sure these meet your needs before making a decision. Here at the Milton Business Centre we offer a wide range of technology options – call us on 1800 629 143 to find out more.
Tech support when it’s needed
Following on from your IT requirements it’s also a good idea to find out what type of IT support an instant office provider offers. It’s no good getting into your new shiny office and not being able to connect to the Wifi or the printer. Having IT support on hand means that you will always have someone to help when you invariably hit a roadblock or experience problems with your setup.
If you find yourself in a position where you can’t access emails or print out that report for the meeting you have scheduled in 10 minutes time, IT support is worth it’s weight in gold and will have you up and running quickly.
What type of support facilities do you need?
When you move into your new office are you going to be answering your own phone or getting someone else to do it, or perhaps you want the flexibility of answering the phone when you’re in and having an answering service when you’re out for meetings or lunch, etc? Do you want your mail collected and sorted? Will you post your own letters or would you like the serviced office provider to take care of that for you?
Think about how you want to run your business and ask yourself these questions to get a better understanding of the requirements you need and what your serviced office provider offers.
Do you need a bare bones instant office or furnishings?
You will need to think about the type of office you want to work in and if you’re going to be bringing in some of your own furniture (favourite chair, plants, etc) or if you’re looking at having your serviced office space provide all of this for you.
At Milton Business Centre we provide high quality executive style furniture.
Find out what’s included and what’s extra
This is really important if you’re a startup or new business as any hidden costs or extra expenses are going to hurt your already small bottom line. It’s important you have a thorough understanding of everything that’s included in your weekly, monthly or yearly fees and what’s going to be extra.
For example, is there a limit on the amount of internet you can use or the amount of phone calls you can make? Is there a limit to the messages or phone calls you receive if you’re opting for a front desk package or does using a co-shared boardroom cost extra?
These are all questions you will want to ask before you sign on the dotted line.
What are the payment terms?
Will you need to pay for your instant office weekly, monthly, or yearly? Do you get any discounts or deals if you pay up front, in a lump sum or sign for an extended period?
What type of shops or facilities are close by?
Do you enjoy a good coffee from a local cafe or perhaps a walk in a park to clear your mind? Perhaps you want to be close to bars and nightlife so after work you can wind down with a drink? Find out about the area and locality of your potential instant offices so you can research the facilities, shops, parks and venues close by to make sure they fit in with your lifestyle.
What are the access hours of an instant office?
Some instant offices offer 24 hour access (like us) and others have limited hours or days where they’re not accessible. Find out when you can get into your office and what hours or days there are limits as there’s nothing worse than getting into the office only to find out you can’t get into your office!
What are the public transport and parking facilities like?
This can be a make-or-break option as if you rely on public transport to get into work and a business centre that offers serviced offices isn’t anywhere near a train station, this won’t work for you. You will also want to enquire about parking for client meetings and how many parks are available with your package (in case you have a large number of guests for a meeting or training session, etc). You may need to know if the centre provides secure bike racks and shower facilities.
All in all your experience with setting up an instant office should be a smooth and hassle free transition into the business world. If you figure out what you need as a business, ask these questions and find out as much info as you can from the instant office provider you contact, you should be much more informed so there are no surprises.