When should your small business move into an office space?
Many entrepreneurs start their business out of their homes or even their garages.
While working from home is a great way to keep overhead low while your business is still growing, there may come a time when working from home is no longer an option.
Outlined below are three signs it might be time to rethink your workspace.
You’re hiring employees (and want to retain them)
Having a remote team can and does work for many organizations. Telecommuting is growing in popularity as well. Since 2005, the population of workers that aren’t self-employed regularly working from home has grown by 140% according to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com. It’s a benefit that many workers cite as desirable in their jobs.
However, there are many benefits to having an office where employees can all be under one roof including:
- Accountability: Though you should trust your employees to do what they need to do, when they say they’re going to do it, being in an office environment can certainly help with keeping everyone on task – even the boss.
- Hiring: Attracting talent is an important part of building your business. Having an office that is comfortable, collaborative and conducive to employee success can help you attract employees that want to work more closely with others.
- Team-building: Even though many of us meet friends and even romantic partners online, it’s difficult to build and maintain strong relationships without some facetime. Having a physical workspace will facilitate stronger bonds between employees.
- Professional development: Professional development is incredibly important for retaining workers, especially millennials. It’s much easier to offer professional development opportunities equally when everyone is under one roof for group training.
Even though remote work is becoming more popular, having a place for employees to gather at least part of the time can help you build a successful company culture.
You need to meet with clients
If your business relies on a lot of client and customer interaction, the same rules of relationship-building apply: it’s hard to build a strong bond over Skype or email. Especially for new clients, face to face meetings are essential for building trust with your business.
In fact, research shows that face-to-face meetings resulted in 40% of prospects becoming customers, while virtual meetings only lead to 16% converting into clients.
If you are still working out of your home, you’re probably relying on conference calls and virtual meetings even with local clients. A workspace can help you get the benefits of a face-to-face meeting without coming across as unprofessional.
You need a business address
Sometimes, just having a business address that isn’t a P.O. box can go a long way to giving your business more trust and legitimacy.
Also, a physical address may be legally necessary. If your business is an LLC, LLP, limited partnership or corporation, you will need a registered agent address. Because these addresses are public information, using your home address is ill-advised.
Altogether these are compelling reasons to look into finding a workspace or office for your business. There are a lot of options, including coworking spaces, leasing and even buying an office. Do your research and find the option that works best for you, your business and your employees.