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Not your father’s office space.

millennial office spaceOffice space planning for the millennial generation.

In today’s office environment, bigger isn’t always better. Gone are the days when each employee was treated to his or her own private office, racing up the corporate ladder to larger, more coveted offices.

According to a report by Property Portfolio Research, the size of the average American office has decreased by 21 percent over the past decade. And real estate data provider, CoreNet Global, estimates that American offices now average 151 square feet per worker. Put together, it provides fertile ground for workspaces that are more collaborative, more open, occupy fewer square feet and, yes, cost less. So just how much office space does your small business need?

The rule of thumb for office space planning is this: Think smart. Plan well. If you’re moving into a new office, reorganizing your current space, downsizing or “smart-sizing,” keep these three tips in mind when determining how much space you need.

  1. Make a List. Check it Twice.

Any good planning project begins with a list. If you’re planning office space, start early by defining your space. with a list of employees and their office space requirements. Maybe the boss needs an office, but Becky, George and Lisa need cubicles in a shared, open area. If you need a conference room, reception area, break room or storage space, you’ll want to add that in, too.

  1. Plan for Growth

Why spend time and money planning and outfitting your office space, only to outgrow it and do it all over again? If you plan for growth now (think three to five years out), you can avoid growing pains later. A good rule of thumb is to carve out 125 to 225 square feet of office space per employee. But if you plan to grow your company, don’t forget to add in those future employees.

  1. Get Technical

When planning your office space, don’t forget to include your technology needs, such as access to and wiring and cabling for computers, servers, fax machines, telephones, copiers and video conferencing equipment. It even includes break room appliances, such as a refrigerator and coffee machine. Think about where these items will live so your contractor can plan for them before you move in.

Search the internet for companies that specialize in it or property management companies that offer space-planning services. You’ll get an expert assessment of your current office space and future needs, including office workflow, space usage, amenities, energy efficiency, leasing costs and technology requirements. You could even save as much as 20% on your current occupancy costs and eliminate office space that doesn’t fit your needs.


For more information about space planning or to sign up for The Anderson Group’s Smart Office Audit, contact Susan Touhey at 518-458-7726 or stouhey@tagny.com.

 

 

 

 

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An Office Space of Their Own

Office Space

John Graziano, president of Capitol Hill Management Services, Inc.

Capitol Hill Management Services Finds the Perfect Fit with The Anderson Group

After seven years at his company’s Western Avenue, Albany, NY location, John Graziano, president of Capitol Hill Management Services, Inc., decided it was time for his firm to spread its wings.

“We had about 5,000 square feet of office space, and I was looking for more. I also wanted the ability to design our office space to meet our needs,” he says.

He spent a few years searching for a building he could buy, but he was unable to find one that checked off all the boxes. So, he turned to The Anderson Group.

Now settled into his new 10,500-square-foot office space at 230 Washington Avenue Extension in Albany, NY, Graziano says his company has found its home. The office currently houses 32 employees with plenty of room to grow.

“The Anderson Group redid our office space to our specifications and their staff worked seamlessly with our staff and contractors to make sure it’s exactly what we need,” Graziano says.

He and his employees are also pleased with the new office’s location, providing an easy commute to the airport and downtown Albany. In addition, he says the office is now centrally located for his employees.

“The whole process was great,” he says. “There were no problems.”

Susan Touhey, managing partner at The Anderson Group, says they work hard to ensure just that.

“We want our tenants’ office space to meet their needs over the entirety of their lease,” Touhey says, “It’s about building positive working relationships from Day One.”


Capitol Hill Management Services, Inc., an association management and government affairs firm, provides an array of professional services for more than 50 state, national and international organizations.

To learn more about The Anderson Group’s portfolio of available commercial properties, contact Susan Touhey at 518-458-7726 or stouhey@tagny.com.

 

 

 

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OFFICE SPACE PLANNING 101

Your Office Space Planning Questions Answered

It’s no secret that your office layout can make or break office productivity. Studies show that workplace design impacts employee performance, engagement and innovation.

office space planning 101

In a recent Gensler U.S. Workplace Survey, a nationwide study of 2,035 professionals, researchers found that “only one in four U.S. workers are in optimal workplace environments. The rest are struggling to work effectively, resulting in lost productivity, innovation and worker engagement.” According to Gallup, “employee disengagement in the U.S. is a serious issue that costs U.S. companies $450 billion to $550 billion every year.”

Based upon these statistics alone, it’s clear that space planning entails much more than finding a sunny spot for your potted plants. But you don’t have to hire a costly interior design company to handle your office space planning needs. Instead, look for a commercial realtor or property management company that offers free space planning services as part of your lease agreement. Many have in-house professional designers who will help you determine circulation patterns and provide scaled floor plans for open space, furniture and equipment.

But where do you start? Use these questions to lead your discussion with a commercial space planning professional:

How much space will I need?

Start by asking yourself how many people will be working in your new space – and on what kinds of tasks. Office designers typically plan for anywhere between 150-200 square feet per employee. If you expect to add employees, you’ll want to incorporate some flexibility into your space planning process. To accommodate future growth, it’s smart to add 10% to 20% to the total square footage.

What do I want my office space to communicate about my company?

Your office design and layout says a great deal to internal and external audiences. A functional, efficient and aesthetically pleasing office layout will give your space an identity and help your employees promote and live your brand. Whether you express your brand through use of colors and logos or communicate your brand via furniture, décor and lighting, your office layout and design influence the way the public and your employees view – and experience – your company.

How do I arrange my office for maximum productivity?

If you determine the location of your copier based upon available electrical outlets, you’re probably not giving full consideration to office workflow. It’s well worth taking the time to meet with a design professional to figure out the most efficient and productive layout for your office. A good property management company or commercial landlord will help you tailor your space to fit your needs, not force fit your needs into a predetermined space.

How do I want my employees to work and interact?

Gensler reports that the most effective office layouts allow for employee focus and collaboration. That means providing spaces that allow employees to concentrate on their individual responsibilities, as well as creating meeting spaces that facilitate employee interaction, collaboration and idea generation.

The bottom line is, there’s no such thing as one-size-fits-all office space. Before you make your next office move or embark on your next office reconfiguration, invest time in thinking about your business goals, employees, and desired office culture. The time you spend can positively impact both employee satisfaction and productivity.

 


Need help with office planning to better fits your needs?

Take advantage of The Anderson Group’s Smart Office Audit. The Smart Office Audit is a free, expert assessment of your current office environment and future needs, including workflow, space usage, amenities, energy efficiency, leasing costs, and technology requirements. The Anderson Group has helped companies save thousands of dollars a month by making changes to their current office space, as well as recommending what to look for in a new location, if it’s time to move.

To learn more, or to schedule your own complimentary Smart Office Audit, call The Anderson Group at 518-458-7726.Smart Office Audit logo

 

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Understanding Tenant Improvements

Anderson Group Design and constructionWhen leasing a new office space, virtually every business owner requires at least some customization. From the quantity and placement of electrical outlets and telecommunications ports to the layout, décor, and fixtures for offices, conference rooms, server rooms and common areas, each tenant’s office space needs are uniquely their own.

Building owners traditionally carry the responsibility for making tenant improvements to customize an office space to the tenant’s needs, with the details negotiated as part of the lease process. 

Determining Requirements

The obligations and responsibilities of both parties are ultimately defined in a document called the “Tenant Work Letter,” which specifies the work to be done, who will complete it, and the amount of money to be expended by both parties.

Many improvements are done through what’s called a “turnkey build out,” in which both parties agree to all of the details of the tenant improvements prior to executing the lease.

At The Anderson Group, a thorough audit process helps the prospective tenant determine all of their needs, including space utilization and layout, technical needs, design, and décor. We help them understand tradeoffs between their ideal requirements and the most cost-effective design decisions. We also offer an in-house design center where tenants can view the latest design finishes and select the most cost-effective choices for carpeting, wall and window treatments, counter and fixtures, lighting, and more.

Optimizing for Maximum Productivity

We then generate CAD drawings to present to the tenant along with a detailed cost estimate for the improvements. Once design and layout is approved, the itemized Work Letter is finalized and the agreed improvements are incorporated into the lease agreement.

At the Anderson Group you work with a top notch professional team lead by construction manager Randy Lloyd and design manager Amanda Watkinson. They work closely together to come up with the optimal layout, furnishings, equipment, and finishing specifications to fit the tenant’s desired budget.

Amanda Watkinson and Randy Lloyd

Design Manager Amanda Watkinson and
Construction Manager Randy Lloyd

“Most tenants have to make tradeoffs between having everything they want and coming in at a budget they can afford,” said Watkinson. “Our job is to help them get the most they can for the investment available. We can show them carpeting, wall treatments, counters and fixtures right here in the office. We put together the best possible layout for their needs.”

Larger, experienced tenants may present their own drawing of their proposed space and a detailed specification list of everything from electrical, telecommunications, and plumbing requirements to decorating, furnishings, and equipment. We go through the same due diligence process with them to ensure that they have considered every possible productivity and design saving. We then price out the proposed construction work.

Build out: Quality and Maintainability

At The Anderson Group, even substantial space improvements are handled quickly and cost-effectively. In fact, our turnkey solutions generally save both Anderson and our tenants time and money. The advantages of the turnkey approach also extend into the build out process.  Having The Anderson Group manage the build out ensures standardized quality, completion on time for the tenant’s rent commencement date, and the ongoing ability to manage ongoing repairs in-house.

“We have 30 years of experience working with tenants of every size,” said construction manager Randy Lloyd. “We are experts in managing build outs effectively. And when we handle the build out, we know exactly how the electrical, plumbing, and other construction is done. So if any changes are required down the line, the tenant just calls us and we can handle them promptly.”

Lloyd has been overseeing construction of tenant spaces for Anderson since 1985, and is also the building inspector for the nearby town of Ballston Spa. His knowledge of the latest American Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements and New York State building codes is also invaluable to prospective tenants.

“We are very skilled at figuring out the most cost-effective improvements, developing detailed specification lists,” he noted. “We work with trusted contractors who we know will provide the quality required. They have worked with us for many years and know our buildings and its requirements.”

Watkinson and Lloyd coordinate access and construction schedules to minimize impact on neighboring tenants and ensure timely performance of all obligations. Simple cosmetic improvements to a small space may be completed in a matter of days. Even the major gutting and renovation of the 11,000 square foot Chamber of Commerce space at 5 Computer Drive South was completed in only four months.

Concluded Lloyd, “We do everything we can to streamline the process for our tenants.”

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Anderson on WGY Radio: Improve Layout and Efficiency

Smart Office Audit LogoYou can update your current workspace to reduce costs and improve productivity. The Anderson Group’s efficiency experts will help you improve the layout and efficiency of your office with a free Smart Office Audit. Request your audit today online or by calling 518-458-7726.

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