What's YOUR approach to property?
Sir Phillip "Top Shop" Green recently completed a review of the government's property costs. In his report there is one theme which is repeated time and again: the need to have a clear property strategy, and to have it written down.
For all businesses (and indeed government, whether local or national), there are two pillars to any property strategy: cost and particularly the proportionality of cost to turnover; and fitness for purpose. Some of the examples in Sir Phillip's report show just how badly things can go wrong and how much money is wasted where these two principles have not been applied transparently and consistently. (Click here to see the summary findings)
Here at asb we have managed strategic changes in our business in recent years. When the firm was created in 1999, we occupied a total of 12 offices in locations sprawled across the south east. Ten years later, our resources are concentrated into two regional centres (in Maidstone and Crawley). The result has been a considerable saving in our costs, both in terms of hard property costs (rent, rates, maintenance), and also in the size and shape of the facilities team we need to operate effectively. More importantly however, we have a property portfolio which reflects where the business is now, and its needs going forward.
Do you as a business regularly review your premises requirement? Do you have an idea about how the size, shape and dynamics of your business will change over the next few years? Having undertaken this exercise, I can assure you it makes for interesting reading.
Property, unfortunately, can be one of the trickiest costs to manage as most property holding structures are pretty inflexible. That's why we thought it might be useful to build on our own experience and that of the many clients for whom we regularly undertake work, to help you and your business plan your property strategy and how to make it work for you. There are opportunities in the current market (such as re-gearing a lease) that can help you achieve your business goals.
There are never going to be any easy answers, but the combination of the skills of our property service partners, their connections in the market and a better understanding of your business could be a help answer some questions about what your business needs from its property and how to make it happen. Which is why, if property is a big part of your business, we’re offering a free property strategy review.
To take us up on this offer – you have nothing to lose and everything to gain - please contact Jonathan Cavell, head of the Property Services team, on 01622 650500 or by email at email@example.com.
Published: 19 Nov 2010