Office Renovations – Planning is Key to Successfully Pulling it Off!
As a business professional, your appearance is important and says a lot about you to clients and potential clients. As a lawyer, you can’t meet with a client in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt and expect them to take you seriously. Doctors can’t walk into their office in a tank top and flip flops and expect to keep their patient’s attention for too long. It doesn’t end with your personal appearance, however.
Your office says plenty about your work, how you’re going to handle clients/patients, and what they can expect from you in terms of professionalism. Therefore, when the time for professional office renovations approach, it’s important you choose the right office renovation company to work with. Furthermore, you need to plan accordingly for the office remodeling to ensure it goes off seamlessly. Where do you begin?
It Starts with the Budget
Okay, you have to set aside the budget when the time comes to begin the office renovation project. Whether it’s a newly built law office, your dental space where you meet new patients and soon-to-be patients, or your accounting firm, the cost of redesigning the space has to be considered.
What is it going to cost you to complete the office remodeling? Some of the costs you’ll have to account for include:
- Cost of hiring your contractor, designers, and specialists.
- Cost of new lighting and windows.
- Storage solutions or custom shelving.
- Desks, chairs, and other office equipment.
- Building an elegant entry way which sets the right tone and ambiance for your office space.
Then, there are the costs most professionals don’t think about. What if you have to update the plumbing in the building? Or, what if there are issues with the foundation that requires leveling? Small decor, plants, chandeliers, and other custom pieces, are going to increase the cost of your office renovation.
It’s important to note only set a budget and discuss the major renovation costs with the contractors, but also to ensure you are aware of additional costs, and unexpected costs which might pop up at different phases of the professional office renovations.
You Need To Compare The Contractors Estimates
So, you have your $50,000 budget in place. You have allocated one-month to complete the project, and you are ready to open up the doors to your new offices at that time. If you don’t have the right contractor in place, this deadline might not happen, and that’s a big problem for a business!
Choosing the right contractor to complete your office renovation is just as important as having enough money set aside, and time to complete the project. If you hire a company that doesn’t order materials and supplies on time, or always has staff missing on major construction jobs, how can you rely on them to finish the work they guaranteed on time? It’s likely that you can’t.
When choosing the contractor to hire, yes, the budget is important. And, if one contractor that claims to be the best is charging double, or triple the price others are charging, you should have your reservations about hiring them. Generally most professionals with experience are going to have estimates that will be fairly close. With this being said, you also can’t simply hire a contractor and design professionals because they are the cheapest. Hiring the cheapest contractor could (and has for many business owners) end up in a disaster.
Some things to consider when hiring contractors for the professional office renovations include:
- Hiring a contractor who is reliable and great at communicating.
- Finding a commercial contractor with specialists on staff or who they work with closely and trust. (designers, architects, plumbers, painters, etc.)
- Choosing a commercial contracting company with a solid reputation.
- Considering the guarantees a company offers (delivery dates, material ordering, milestones in the project, etc.).
When your business is on the line you need to hire contractors who are reliable and are going to deliver what they guarantee they are going to deliver. Yes, you need to allocate some time for setbacks. Even the most responsible companies in the contracting industry deal with unexpected setbacks caused by delays in custom supplies or materials. But, the contractors you choose to hire should have a solid reputation in meeting their deadlines, even delivering early, and providing fair pricing, given the industry standards for professional office remodeling services offered in the Suncoast area.
Timing Of Your Office Remodeling Project Is Everything
As a business professional, clients are going to rely upon you to get things done on time and as promised. For example, if you’re an accountant who can’t meet tax filing deadlines, you’re going to cost your clients and get them in trouble with the IRS (or other federal/state agencies). Lawyers who aren’t on time for trial run the risk of having their client’s case dismissed or otherwise having fines levied on their clients.
For these reasons, you need to guarantee the quality of your work, your professionalism, and your timeliness in providing professional services to your customers. It’s imperative that you can open your offices on time.
Planning for your office renovation also means understanding how long the job is going to take. Making sure you can open your doors and provide services to your clients by a certain date. And, if you plan on staying open during renovation, making sure that the contractors are working accordingly, to ensure you can operate in a specific space of the office, to provide the best services to your clients at all times.
It’s important to communicate with contractors at all phases of the professional office renovations they’re performing. Ask questions about deadlines, if the job is going to plan, if they’ve had any setbacks, and so forth. The more communication you maintain with the contractors throughout the design and renovation process, the easier it is going to be for you to plan accordingly when the time comes to open your doors for business.
You don’t want an office that’s only halfway complete by your inauguration date to open your office. Therefore, you must understand what’s going on throughout all phases of the office renovation, what’s completed, and how much work is yet to be completed, in order to ensure everything goes off as planned.
Allocate Time for Setbacks – They Do Happen!
Planning the timing for the office renovation to be completed, also includes allocating some additional time for setbacks. As highlighted above, issues and setbacks can occur even with the best contractors and the best planning. For example, if you ordered custom lighting and storage solutions, the manufacturers of those items might delay in the shipment to the contractor.
Therefore, the contractor can’t move forward with the office remodeling until they receive those supplies. This is just one of many setbacks that can occur. Issues with permits, licensing, or emergency plumbing or electrical jobs might arise. Any and all of these issues can cause setbacks in the completion date of your office renovations.
As a professional, you have to plan for these accordingly. So, talk to the contractor before they are hired to do the job, and ask what setbacks might occur. Ask them how much additional time they can take. And, find out what contingency plans they have, in case issues do arise. From there, you can appropriately decide if you need an additional week or two, before opening your office doors, to ensure everything is done properly, and to guarantee your office opening is going to serve your clients well.
Although you don’t want them to occur, it’s best to prepare for possible setbacks before the remodeling and construction phases begin. This allows you to remain ahead of schedule, and possibly even open a little earlier than anticipated, in the event nothing goes wrong once the remodeling begins.
Understand Your Clientele, Employees, And Their Needs
What good is it to design a modern office, with the most expensive finishing touches, if your clients aren’t really looking for that or don’t expect it? Or, if you’re a professional trying to promote the greatest technologies and advancements in your practice, but your office looks dated, potential customers might not be inclined to believe your practice is what you claim it is.
It’s important to understand who your clients are and what your employees need in order to do their job.
Some things to consider as you’re planning the design phase of the office includes:
- Having an office that functions well (open vs. closed office, sufficient lighting, optimize workflow and space, etc.).
- Choosing furniture, lighting, storage, custom doors or windows, and design elements, that lend themselves well to the space.
- Understanding your clients. For example, if your clients are retirees who need financial planning services, do they really need to see the latest technologies or do they prefer something simple when they walk into the office?
Discuss the plans and ideas with the contractor and their design team. Speak to your employees to find out what they need, in order to do their jobs properly (or better). And, understand your clients, your industry, and what potential clients will be looking for, when they step foot into your offices. Doing these things will allow you to properly design a space that not only looks good and is functional, but one that attracts the clientele you’re trying to attract as a business professional.
Bringing your office into the current decade and presenting an elegant and inviting space to clients, is of utmost importance in any professional service industry. When the time comes to plan for your office renovation, these are some of the most important factors to consider, to guarantee everything goes as planned. Materials can be discussed with your contractor but these fundamentals of planning mentioned above shouldn’t be overlooked.
When you know what to expect with the office remodeling process, it will make the remodeling process seamless and allow you to stay under budget. Furthermore, your design contractors will deliver the perfect finishes throughout the office, that every client will appreciate, and every employee will love walking into each workday.
Are You Looking For An Office Remodeling Contractor Serving The Suncoast Area?
CBJ Builders Group Inc. is a Florida state licensed and insured general contractor serving the Suncoast. We are members of the Florida Builders Association, The Sarasota Chamber of Commerce, The Manatee-Sarasota Building Industry Association, and The North Port Chamber of Commerce. We take our reputation in the community seriously and take great pride in our completed projects.
Whether you’re looking to remodel your law office, a medical or dental practice office, your accounting office, or some other type of professional office our design/build team is ready to help you transform your office into a more modern, inviting and professional space.
If you’d like to schedule an appointment or consultation for your office remodeling or renovation please give us a call (941) 223-6888 or fill out our online contact form and we’ll get right back to you.