Traditional Offices

Is a traditional office the right office for you? The answer is less about the size of your business and more about the pace of growth, and your attitude towards flexibility, control, and identity. Find out everything you need to know about traditional offices in this simple guide.

What is a “traditional” office?

By traditional, we don’t necessarily mean traditional in terms of design – all oak panelling and leather inlaid desks. We mean traditional in the way you rent your office, and traditional in terms of the way you work.

Is a traditional office right for my business?

A traditional way to rent

Once, if you didn’t want to buy, virtually the only arrangement available for securing office space for your business was through a lease. It’s still a wise option for many businesses, but it’s far from the only option.

So, which types of business are most suited to a traditional office lease?

  • Established businesses: A business that is well-established and has a clear understanding of its needs is unlikely to be surprised by sudden growth or contraction. As a result, flexibility of office space and the desire to avoid being tied to long term agreements may be less important than security and certainty (of location and contract). That makes a lease a better bet.
  • Businesses that don’t plan on another move soon: As a general rule of thumb, a serviced office will be a good option if you’re planning on staying in your new premises for no longer than three years (although other factors may make a serviced option the right option for you). After three years, the savings of a traditional leased office make it the more cost-effective option.
  • Businesses for whom long-term savings matter more than short-term costs: A traditional leased office requires a greater initial outlay than a serviced office would (see below). But once you’ve invested in making the space your own, the overheads are typically far less than you’re likely to pay with other office types.

A traditional way to work

An office to call your own, big enough to house your entire team with some additional room to grow: that may be the classic vision of an office, but it’s not the only one. Shared offices (or coworking spaces) are increasingly popular with freelancers or small businesses. In return for sharing the workspace with other workers and businesses, you get a typically modern, welcoming space, a relatively low rent and bookable meeting rooms that enable you to deliver a professional service should clients come calling.

So given the flexible, communal alternatives, why do companies prefer traditional office spaces?

  • Privacy & security: Communal can be wonderful, but if you’re working on projects of a sensitive nature, or you’re the sort of business for whom non-disclosure agreements are commonplace, sitting in a room of relative strangers isn’t ideal.
  • Comfort: Not everyone is a social butterfly. When you’re considering which office type is right for you, look at the makeup of your team. If it’s a largely introverted group, pick a traditional office space that will play to their strengths.
  • Productivity: On the other hand, a team of extroverts and social animals might find so much inspiration in a coworking space that it’s hard to get them to focus on the day job. If knowing where your people are and keeping them task-focused is tricky, a traditional office might help.

  • Focus: Coworking spaces can present challenges in terms of noise. After all, everyone is entitled to use the phone, and some office cultures see music as essential to creating a productive atmosphere. If you need control over your own environment, choose a traditional office.
  • Welcoming visitors: If yours is the sort of business where visiting clients and customers is an everyday fact of life, you’ll find it considerably easier to control the environment they walk into when you choose a traditional lease rather than a coworking space.
  • Identity & culture: It’s far more of a challenge to create a distinct office culture or identity when you’re part of a larger communal office. With a traditional office, the space is your own, which means it’s much easier to mould it into something that carries your DNA.

What’s included in a traditional office?

Traditional lease

It does depend on the terms of the lease (not every office arrives at market in exactly the same way) but traditional leased office space is typically delivered in ‘Grade A’ condition. This means you’ll need to add the fixtures and fittings, although the price you pay for the lease will reflect that.

Things to think about at setup might therefore include:

  • Partitions for creating meeting rooms, individual offices, kitchen areas, etc.
  • IT cabling and internet connections
  • Office furniture
  • AV equipment
  • Kitchen equipment
  • Telecoms

Types of traditional office

Where the traditional applies to the way you work rather than the way you rent (i.e. a non-communal space) what’s supplied with the office will depend on the type of office you choose:

A serviced office will include almost everything you need to start working from day one. It’s the ‘plug and play option’ that includes furniture, electrics, kitchen equipment and, depending on the individual office, reception facilities.

A managed office gives you all the benefits of a serviced office with the additional ability to choose the specifications of the space, giving you an office that’s precisely tailored to your requirements.

A leased office typically cuts costs by leaving the fixtures and fittings to you. As we’ve seen, that can increase overheads initially, but payoff significantly in the mid-long term.

How much does a traditional office cost?

As noted elsewhere in this guide, ‘traditional’ can be a very broad term incorporating a wide variety of office space. To help you narrow the field and find traditional office space that meets your specifications and budget, try our office space calculator.

Where can I find traditional office space?

Hubble searches the whole market in real time, giving you the pick of available leased, managed and serviced traditional offices. Filter by up-to-date pricing, live availability, location, amenities, exclusive offers and more.

We’ve made finding your next office as easy as booking a hotel room, and we’re trusted by the likes of Trustpilot, Accenture, and Citymapper.

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