One of my favorite questions to ask during meetings with companies, both domestic and international, is: How do you determine whether you need 25 or 50 meeting rooms in your new office space? Or better yet, how do you accurately gauge the required square footage for your company? Have you considered the preferred video conferencing equipment or room types for your users? And what about the ratio of meeting rooms to quiet spaces?
It might seem like a bit of a puzzle. The truth is, most companies have very limited data to guide their investment decisions for new offices. Often, consultants and advisors offer insights (which is beneficial, but what is the basis of their advice?).
Sometimes, physical counts are conducted to gain a glimpse into what needs to be done. In fact, there are companies that resort to manually counting individuals two to three times a day for three to six months.
However, when you have 1500 employees spread across seven floors, this task becomes incredibly time-consuming and costly. Moreover, the person responsible for the counts must compile the data into some form of report (usually Excel) and then analyze it. But does this data truly provide an accurate picture? Then comes the internal surveys to determine technology needs. Do you ask all 1500 employees, or just a handful? Think investing in technology is expensive? Have you considered the cost of underutilized space?
Let me provide an example. A company in the outskirts of Oslo decides to lease new, modern office spaces, aiming to attract top talent and enhance its profile. (They're going for 2500 sqm.) In the Oslo outskirts, the rental rate is, let's say, NOK 3000 per sqm per year. Then come common expenses, electricity, furnishings, etc. But let's work with NOK 3000 per sqm per year.
2500 sqm x NOK 3000 = NOK 7.5 million per year. (750.000euro)
he company has minimal data prior to the move, but chooses to implement a platform like Neowit's along with sensor data post-move to optimize the office, eliminate ghost meetings, facilitate activity-based workspaces, and streamline meeting room and desk reservations. The leadership then compiles a report showing an average workspace utilization of 60% over the past three months!
What if the company had this data earlier? What if they could make do with 2000 sqm and still achieve a utilization rate of 70% (with some room for growth)?
By saving 500 sqm, the company would have saved NOK 1.5 million annually, which could be redirected towards employee team-building or other beneficial investments! (You'd be amazed at the technology you can get for that amount.)
Are you concerned about sustainability? That's another factor to consider.
t's said that 40% of global CO2 emissions come from real estate, tied to square footage. So, feel free to do the math yourself—I won't elaborate further on this topic for now!
"Action speaks louder than words!"