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Selecting an Office Location

A Guide to Help You Decide

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You have decided to setup your business outside of your home. The first step is to select a location for your office. There are several factors that go into selecting an office location. Unfortunately, there is not a one-size-fits-all solution to selecting a location. Evaluate each of the following criteria and decide which one is the most important to your business. This will be the driving force in your decision.

Cost Considerations

As they say in real estate, there are three things that determine price: location, location, and location. The same holds true for office space. For most young companies money is an issue and cost will end up being a trade off with one of the other considerations below. Most commonly, the most expensive office space is located in downtown metropolitan areas. If a majority of your customers are downtown (for example clients for a law firm), then your only choice may be to locate your office downtown. A medical office may be cheaper (all other costs considered) in a medical park or complex. Lower cost options usually abound in buildings with high vacancy rates.

Close to Suppliers

If your business handles a physical product, you may want to locate your office near your supplier or warehouse. This becomes even more important if the product is time sensitive. For example, if your business fulfills customer requests for product samples, taking an additional day while you wait for the samples to arrive from the warehouse could allow your competitor to slip-in.

Close to Customers

As mentioned above, your only option may be to locate near your customers. Other businesses that require being located near customers are:

  • Retail oriented businesses that need to be located with other retail establishments.
  • Industrial dependent business such as logistics and distribution services will have to be located near industrial centers.
  • Service businesses that target a particular niche market will have to locate near the customers that they service.

Close to the Work Force

As your office grows you will have to hire employees. If any of the above factors are not major considerations for your business, then access to the workforce that your business requires should be your driving factor. If your business requires highly skilled and professional employees, a location near the more successful suburbs would be best. If low skilled or clerical workers are a bigger concern, then a location near an urban area or at least a major mass transit line will be best.

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