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Taking Inspiration From Google For Your Business Premises

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | Taking Inspiration From Google For Your Business Premises

Renowned for creating incredible workspaces that aim to increase productivity in their staff, Google has 70 offices in 40 countries, each of them carefully designed to be an appealing and inspirational place to work. Here are just a few of the most exciting and design-led Google offices around the world.

Google Zurich, Switzerland

Step inside Google’s European engineering HQ, and you’d be forgiven for assuming you were atop an Alpine ski resort. In fact, you’re in one of the company’s many zoned conference areas, which encompass a snowy “North Pole”, complete with penguins, an aquarium chill-out zone, and swing chairs for (literally!) hanging out while you work.

Google Tel Aviv, Israel

Another innovative Camenzind Evolution design that can inspire your business, this sales and engineering hub sits in a prime spot in Israel’s coolest city, focusing on Google’s EMEA activities. The office has themed designs across its seven floors. Each reflects an authentic Israeli scene; hence an in-house orange grove tipping a wink to one of Israel’s most famous exports, corridors mocked-up to look like heritage cobbled streets (complete with window-boxes bursting with colourful blooms) and even a tractor-turned-lounge to complete the weird and wonderful décor.

Google London, United Kingdom

The Central St. Giles Building in Covent Garden is situated in the heart of London’s theatreland, playing host to Google’s London “Super HQ” within an unmistakably British space. Designed by British firm Penson, the patriotic theme starts from the Union Jack-swathed reception and continues on throughout the building with Chesterfield-buttoned velour lounge seating in British Racing Green, reminiscent of a vintage town hall, and kitschy chintz wallpaper and wing-back armchairs suggestive of a retro “Granny Flat”. This quirky style of interior design celebrates all things London with tongue firmly in cheek.

Google Amsterdam, Netherlands

Finally, engaging local design firm D/DOCK to refurbish its Amsterdam offices, Google’s newly refreshed reopened in January 2014. With eco credentials just as impressive as the design focus, this makeover adhered strictly to an approved materials list that minimised toxins, while maximising efficiency in power and water consumption. You can easily take inspiration from this, creating an industrial environment by engaging a pallet supply company and re-using materials and equipment in order to create an office space that inspires and amazes all at once. The wellbeing of the staff was also a major driver, with all employees afforded a 180° view across Amsterdam from the multitude of windows that line the offices. Thoughtful decorative touches appear everywhere, with bikes featuring heavily in the design (a nod to Amsterdam’s pedal-power transport culture), plus cute and comfortable 1960s caravans, complete with deckchairs and faux grass, repurposed as enticing meeting rooms for staff to enjoy.

As you can see, Google has gone a long way to ensure their office spaces are inspirational and truly incredible. You can take this approach with your business premises, irrespective of whether you have a number of offices or you own a warehouse. You can still make the place exciting while productive and adhering to safety regulations.

Is It Time to Upgrade Your Office Setup?

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | Is It Time to Upgrade Your Office Setup?

Whether it’s a home office or the top floor of the tallest building downtown, upgrading your office space can transform your business’ productivity more than you might expect. While you might have a sleek and stylish office already, it can always be better. Upgrading your office could spark increased creativity, satisfaction, and a feeling that you and your employees can get this done, whatever this might be.

But where do you fall behind when trying to upgrade your office? There are so many things to consider, from the equipment you use to your surroundings. Here are some tips on what to consider upgrading your office setup and reaping the benefits.

The Equipment

Whether it’s your computer, office chair, desk, printer, or even desk toys, upgrading the equipment in your office can make everything run smoothly. If you’re looking for increased comfort, investing in better ergonomic chairs for you and your employees will prevent the back stains and complaints. Likewise, company-provided laptops will make it easier for everyone to complete work from home.

There are too many businesses that rely on old equipment because they don’t feel it’s worth upgrading it. But outdated equipment can ruin productivity and lead to nothing but frustration for your staff. If you’re looking for a happy office with top morale, the best place to start by investing in shiny new toys for them to play with.

The Systems

Network systems are something you must keep up to date, as this ensures that you can keep your data and information safe from hackers and similar security threats. Investing in robust Network Cabling Services will make this a reality and also mean that you have a system you can rely on.

It might also be worth thinking about upgrading the operating systems that your company uses. While most people will use Windows 10 or macOS 10.15, company computers seem, curiously, stuck in the past, with some machines still running Vista. While this could be considered more secure than others, it also cannot handle the programs that could be beneficial for your business, so even jumping up to the next generation would make a huge difference.

The Energy

Being energy efficient is a significant thing in the modern business world, and it doesn’t matter if you work from home or run a large office, you want to do everything you can to save money on your energy bills.

Upgrading from your existing, migraine-inducing fluorescent lights for something more comfortable on the eyes is the first step. Still, you can also consider looking for a way to bring more natural light into the office. It is, however, unlikely that you’ll be able to replace windows outright. Even so, you can think about rearranging the office layout to make the most of the light and space available.

The Surroundings

No one wants to sit in a dull and study office, but while you don’t want to fill it with too many distractions, such as a ping pong table or something similar, it doesn’t mean you can’t still have fun with the overall design of the office.

Everything from employee artwork to house plants dotted around will create an atmosphere that you and your employees will be glad to work in. It will provide a sense of personality to the office’s overall style and design, and make it a place where you and your staff will feel comfortable, relaxed, and ready to get on with the day.

The Policies

If you’ve not already noticed, the professional world is changing. Companies are embracing the opportunities of working remotely, allowing flexible hours, as well as outsourcing tasks that will help others free up their time so they can perform better.

It could be that it’s time for your office to update its policies and see the benefits that doing so can bring. Studies show that flexible working can increase employee productivity, despite some believing the contrary. This will only prove beneficial to your business and the morale of everyone in the office.

Space to Breathe

Not every office needs to be a painfully minimalist adventure in subtlety. You can use it to reflect your company and your employees. The days of the stuffy office are long, long gone, now it’s all about personality and oomph to motivate and drive employees, even if the only employee is yourself. Whether you are upgrading your office systems or its surroundings, there is always something that you can explore to boost your satisfaction, security, and quality of service.

How to Create a Front Office that Everyone will Love

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article | OfficeThe reception of the office is one place that the management should never ignore. It should be a combination of form and function. The reception area must be able to create a positive first impression and make guests satisfied when they leave. How is this possible? Keep on reading the rest of this post as we briefly tackle some of the best ways to create the best front office.

Use a Digital Receptionist

These days, you no longer need to employ a human receptionist to be at the front desk. To cut down the costs, consider using a digital receptionist in the front office. This makes visitor registration more innovative, which can be completed through a tablet or a computer instead of manually logging in with a pen and a paper. The digital receptionist will also capture the photo and signature of the guests.

If you are looking for the best check in apps for business, take a look at Greetly and see how this digital receptionist can revolutionize the front office.

Choose the Right Furniture

When choosing furniture to be used in the front office, make sure that you go beyond the aesthetics. While it is undeniable that style is important, you should also emphasize ergonomics. Make sure that it will promote the highest level of comfort to the guests so that they won’t mind the time they have to spend waiting.

Offer a Branded Experience

In one article from Forbes, the author reiterates that brand identity is not enough. The business needs to offer a total brand experience. While this can be done in many ways, one of the best would be in the front office. From the moment a visitor steps in, the front office should already be reflective of the personality that the business would want to establish. A good way to do this is to choose colors and designs that are associated with the company.

Provide Refreshments

The management does not need to spend a fortune to provide refreshments in the front office. Water, coffee, and tea will be great to have. A jar of candies, chocolates, and cookies will also be good. This way, visitors will have something to fill their stomach while they wait. It does not need to be anything too heavy!

Create Reports

Front office management can be improved through analytics. If the office has a digital receptionist, it will have the data that can be analyzed to perform an analysis of visitor data. It can help in the identification of trends and areas for improvement. To add, there should also be a system in place to ask visitors for feedback when they leave. It will make it easier for the management to determine what can be done to be better.

Take note of the things that have been mentioned above to create a great front office, making sure that your guests will feel welcomed once they step in and will be highly satisfied with the experience when they leave.

Finding the Best Business Property for You

A new business property can be one of the biggest commitments that you can make as a business owner. It is also, at its heart, a difficult thing to make a decision on as there are a lot of different elements involved. Especially if you have never owned a business property or rented one before.

Of course, some of your initial considerations will include a number of important factors, such as:

  • What’s your budget?
  • What size premises do you want?
  • Do you need a lease or a licence?
  • Where and when do you need to start looking?

Outside of this, there are also a lot of other considerations that you need to make in order to set your business off to a flying start. Including:

Transport Links

One of the most important considerations for any business – new or old – is the problem of transport. Can people, clients and employees alike, get to your location easily enough without it being a hassle? Buses, trains, parking for cars and just a generally easy to find entrance are a big part of ensuring transport is as easy as possible for everyone. If you choose to base your business in an office in the middle of nowhere, then you may find that very few people want to work for you. Nor will you have an easy accessibility that clients prefer. So, always factor transport into your property calculations.

Location, Location, Location

There are lots of places to look when it comes to finding the right property to base your business at, as many people say on the property hunt, it’s all about location, location, location. You need the right amenities, footfall and lots of other factors that come into play when choosing a property to be just right before you settle on a location absolutely.

Usually, your biggest concern should be being in the right area for your business. So, if you are a thriving digital agency then you will obviously want to be situated in a city centre. Or if you need foot traffic in order to generate enough sales then you need to be situated on a busy high street or at least somewhere a little more visible to the public.

Upgrades

Another important thing to consider is whether or not you plan to expand your business any time soon. If you do, settling on an office or storefront that is too small for your future business pursuits is not a good idea in the long run. Find a property which will be level up alongside your enterprise.

Getting advice from a commercial property agent could be the best solution for you when it comes to actually finding a good property, as it gives you more insight and knowledge to the sector that you might not necessarily have on your own.

At the end of the day, finding the right property for you may not be the easiest process to go through from start to finish. But, in the end, it will be worth it when you find yourself in your brand new business office.