Commercial Guide: Your Office Renovation Budget

Considering improving your business or medical practice? Looking for a better office space or simply a fresh location? If yes, you need to find an experienced office renovation company. Look no further than the Rod Johnstone Group, which are one of the best commercial fitouts Townsville located company providing its professional services anywhere in North, Central, and Western Queensland.

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Include these perks in your next fitout for happy employees

People spend the majority of their time in their workplace, so it makes sense to create a welcoming environment that they can enjoy spending time in. To do this, find a way to cater to their tastes and lifestyles. You also need to be mindful about the obstacles they face on their way to work and provide a solution; they’ll be grateful for it. The below ideas are some additions you can include in your next office fitout. They’ll help with creating happier employees, which in turn boosts productivity.

 

  • Showers

It’s common for people to hit the gym early and then head to work straight afterwards. The gym showers might be occupied or have no facilities like this at all.

Having shower facilities in the office takes the extra stress off employees. They can get to work on time and feel fresh before they start their day at the office. It’s handy for those who go for a workout or a run  during their lunch as well.

italian lockers

 

  • Parking space

Another big stresser for employees is where to park their car. Street spaces are usually full or there’s none at all around the workplace. If your building has room, speak with us about installing a parking lot in the scope for the office fitout. Life happens, and people run late. Having a guaranteed parking space will take some of the anxiety away in the morning.

 

  • Big kitchen

Tiny kitchens with a single microwave and a bar fridge just won’t cut it in this day and age. Your company has grown, so it’s time to get a professional grade kitchen that’s worthy of a magazine spread.

Speak with our builder and designer about what you want the new office kitchen to look like; how much space to use, colour scheme, appliances, etc. The team is going to be happier because there’s no longer a line for the microwave, the sandwich press, or the coffee machine.

Image credit: Glassdoor UK

Image credit: Glassdoor UK

 

  • Ergonomic design

Sitting at a desk for most of the day will result in low motivation and back problems. Ergonomics has come far in the past decade, with chairs and desks designed specifically for comfort in the office. Another idea is to invest in some standing desks.

 

  • Gym access

It’s a bit on the extravagant side, but executive office fitouts will often include a gym. There’s no reason why you can’t follow suit. Employers are more conscious about promoting health and wellness and are more aware of employee’s wellbeing. Some even organise team-building events by taking employees to a local gym.

 

Your office fitout can go beyond a new paint job and power-saving appliances. Perks like office showers, comfortable seating arrangements, and a new, shiny kitchen are only a few of the options you can choose to help your employees feel happier and more comfortable at work.

 

Read more like this:

5 Horrible Mistakes You Could Make With Your Office Fitout

4 ways to make your office fitout look expensive

5 Tell-Tale Signs You Need to Get a New Commercial Renovation

Old, outdated commercial spaces aren’t pleasant to look at, or work in for that matter. After a few decades, it’s not unreasonable to think that it’s time for an upgrade. Sometimes a new coat of paint just won’t do it. You should give us a bell when the five below points start popping up.

 

  • Your workplace feels like a prison

Cubicles are not for the claustrophobic, and high-set windows don’t allow much natural light to get through. Most of the light you’re exposed to comes from the ones in the ceiling.

Confined, dark and musty workspaces don’t equal a healthy workplace or happy employees.

Your employees need room to breathe so ditch the cubicles

Your employees need room to breathe so ditch the cubicles

 

  • The lights/toilets/elevator broke…again

The amount of money spent fixing these problems can easily go towards a commercial renovation. Plus, the old fixtures are generating expensive utility bills. WELS-approved taps, toilets and other fixtures use less water and LED lights to save money on the electricity per quarter.

 

  • You’re thinking about changing locations

There’s a new space in a corporate park that’s become available. It’s about the same size as your current digs, but there’s bright colours, new carpet and incredibly fast internet connections. But then you remember the pains of packing.

Why pack up shop, in a convenient location near a coffee shop no less, when a builder can upgrade your space for you? Plus, you don’t have to change your address on emails, letters and Google My Business.

 

  • You don’t bring in clients

Your office is convenient, its a place to work and get business done. But when it’s time to meet clients, the conference room, if there even is one, is passed in favour of a local cafe. You know that first impressions matter, and how would you feel if you were a customer walking through a dated office?

 

  • There’s walking tracks

Walking tracks in the floor are genuine signs of wear-and-tear, and that means it’s definitely time to upgrade. So are dripping taps, faulty lights, squeaking doors…

 

Self-education is key

7 Savvy Ways to Spend Your Leftover Commercial Renovation Budget

5 Horrible Mistakes You Could Make With Your Office Fitout

Impress Customers By Overhauling These 4 Things In Your Commercial Renovation

In retail, the customer is king. They bring you repeat business and their recommendations will bring you more customers, such as their friends and family. But if your store has stains on the ceiling, little natural light, and a lot of wear-and-tear, that’s less likely to happen. Impressions matter, and these 4 points will make a better one once the doors reopen.

 

Store layout

This is key when you are in the design stages. The floor plan needs to be laid out with these in mind:

  • Space for people to move freely between sections, both staff and customers
  • Dedicated retail space, divided into sections by product type
  • Staff only areas, including a break area

Let’s use Apple stores as an example. Their floor plan is minimalist and well spaced. There’s separate displays for iPods, iPhones, watches, headphones and computers. Behind the counter is the staff-only area that includes a repair station for quick fixes and a general staff area for workers to place their belongings.

 

Applestore1

 

Amenities

You’re a cafe. People come to your place for their three-times-daily coffee, lunch, and all-day breakfast. If you are a customer who spends a great deal of time, usually hours, at the establishment, what essentials do you need? Definitely bathrooms and power outlets. For women’s bathrooms, powder-room sections are becoming increasingly common.

powder room

Embrace trends

Like the powder room trend above, it’s important to keep up with competitors and influencers. Customers love, and expect, new things. You can take advantage of this in particular if you are rebranding your shop. Look at your social media feeds and competitor websites. Think about how you want to look in 2018 and beyond. Some retail trends on a cosmetic level include;

 

  • Scandi/minimalist influenced interior design
  • Neutral palettes with colourful furnishings
  • Oversized artwork, murals by local artists
  • Exposed, smooth concrete rendering or exposed brickwork
  • Natural elements, such as light and timber

 

Update your tech

Paper and pens normally carried by wait staff are being phased out in favour of tablets. This makes for faster workflow, with orders directly sent to the kitchen or barista. Some retail stores are doing this as well with smartphone-like devices. A simple scan of the barcode will show if a particular item is in stock, or can be found at another store.

We support self-education;

Make your speciality commercial fitout different from the rest

The Anatomy of a Hassle-Free Office Fitout

5 Horrible Mistakes You Could Make With Your Office Fitout

Mistakes happen, they just do. Commercial construction projects and your office fitout aren’t immune. To avoid some headaches, we listed five of the common hiccups we come across so that you don’t have to deal with them either.

 

Cheaper = Saving

Don’t feel like you’re saving money by purchasing the cheaper fittings. You’ll spend more on upkeep than you would like.

Quality appliances, fittings, furniture, and even internet connections do cost a pretty penny. But they will function better and last longer. You can buy high-grade items at a reduced price from resellers, just make sure you do your homework.

money-with-wings

No emergency fund

You think you budgeted and allocated every last dollar? Feel confident that you don’t need an emergency fund? Then you’re in for a rude wake-up call.

Commercial builders always do their best to make sure the project is running on time. But occasionally they hit a speedbump. You need a backup fund, usually accepted as 20% of your total build quote, to cover costs on the extra days worked.

 

Not flexible

That said, some clients are less than understanding when problems come along. Builders can always finish an office fitout but it’s better when less stress is swirling around.

Being flexible with the timeline is difficult because as a client, you’re hoping for the project to be finished on the due date. This does happen, but occasionally you need to let go of control and let the team build as best they can. Rest assured, the project manager will keep you updated.

 

Not friendly

To have a stress-free build, it’s preferable the team and the client get along with each other. Compassion, understanding, and respect from both sides equals a harmonious project. If problems do arise and the relationship is rocky, the head builder won’t look forward to calling the client, it’s an unpleasant situation in the first place.

 

No questions asked

With an office fitout, it’s absolutely important to ask questions. Don’t worry about appearing ‘too picky’ or wanting all the answers straight away. It’s our job to answer them and create a workspace that you love. Some good questions to ask include;

  • What are the inclusions?
  • Can I see your portfolio?
  • Are variations and associated costs covered in the contract?
  • How long is the building maintenance period?

 

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6 top tips to make your speciality medical fitout above board

Few people like going to the doctor, dentist, vet etc. As a business owner and a medical professional, you want to create a space that puts people (or their pets) at ease and not only in the emotional sense. We’re experienced in medical fitouts around Townsville and Mt Isa, and we have some tips to share with you.

 

Location

Prime real estate is important. Patients look for specialists that live close to them for treatment whether you’re a GP, x-ray practice, or veterinarian.

It’s common for medical fitouts, like doctor’s surgeries and vets, to have their offices in the suburbs. This is where families call home. They’re more likely to visit a practice in the next suburb over where it’s quiet, compared to battling for a park at the shopping centre.

Cavendish Road Clinic in Brisbane is an example of a commercial practice in a residential zone

Cavendish Road Clinic in Brisbane is an example of a commercial practice in a residential zone

Tone

The presentation is key. Do you want to look commercial or family friendly? In a medical fitout, the latter is preferred. Snapping up an old home and renovating it into a commercial business makes this easier.

This is where interior design comes in handy. Colour palette is important, you don’t want the whole colour of the rainbow painted through the office. That will only send people’s minds into overdrive. Certain colours evoke emotional responses. Blue evokes calmness. Green represents health.

The Psychological Properties of Colours

Be wise with your colours and choose wood finishes to create a welcoming medical environment. People are more relaxed in natural environments not surrounded by sterile white walls. As a doctor/veterinary practice, most visitors will come with small children. Catering to their needs with a small play area or books will make waiting in reception easier for them.

 

Security

It’s not only patients who need peace of mind. Business owners need it to. Ordering and installing a security system is a recommended first step. Medical practices hold sensitive information and it’s important to safeguard it. Other considerations for your medical fitout include tinted windows. You can order a shrink-wrapped design instead to add some character.

 

Functionality

This is more than having a space that ‘flows’ and makes visitors comfortable. When you think functionality, make sure you don’t forget about:

  • Security
  • Privacy
  • Parking/accessibility for clients
  • Storage
  • Sound-proofing

 

Codes and regulations

You can’t open your practice, let alone get it off the ground, without following codes and regulations laid out by the government. Each practice needs a dedicated consultation room for each practitioner in the business. Other standards listed include:

  • Patients must be able to access the premises without passing through clinical areas
  • Equipment and furnishings must meet Queensland Health Capital Works Guidelines
  • Curtains and bed sheets are fire retardant

 

Physical Environment Standard (version 5)

Make your speciality commercial fitout different from the rest

Doctors offices, dentists, and even gyms aren’t the most exciting places to walk into. Neutral tones and furniture are universal in these spaces. But there’s some touches you can make to your speciality commercial fitout different from all the others out there, whether you’re a dentist, doctor, or  physio.

 

 

  • For the kids

Dentists, doctors, and even gyms cater to clients with children. Parents mightn’t be able to drop their children off and have no choice to bring them to appointments or a workout. This creates a level of stress they don’t need.

One way to set yourself apart from others in your field is to create a dedicated childcare space. Have a nicely decorated room with appropriately sized furniture, a few boxes of toys, and a shelf full of books. This will get the appreciation of the parents and maybe some five-star-reviews on Facebook. This in turn leads to you getting more clients.

crayons-1445057_1280

 

  • Play with colour

White can be seen as fresh…or sterile. It’s an important factor during the planning stage of your speciality commercial fitout to keep in mind. You can leave the walls neutral, but don’t be afraid to hang up some artwork and inject some personality into the room.

If you do paint, keep the colour scheme in line with that of  your business logo. That way everything is ‘tidy’ and there’s no clashing colours all over the place. If you work in the medical field use calming/trust colours like blue, navy, and green. Gyms on the other hand should use exciting, active colours like red, pink, and other warm hues.

 

  • Get stylish

Break the mould and buy up from IKEA! Or any other stylish furniture store that’s in your budget.

We have other articles in our news section that will help you style your space, from office renovation trends to amazing commercial fitouts from around the world.

office fitout

Style your space differently

Making your speciality commercial fitout different from the rest isn’t as difficult as you might think. Ordering a fit out is an excuse to start from scratch and have a complete makeover of your company image, aesthetically at least. Think about how you go that little bit further to cater to your customers. It can be anything from a children’s play room or having a few private bathrooms with fancy soap.

 

We have more advice about fitouts here:

  1. Use corworking spaces as office renovation inspiration
  2. 6 hacks to save on operating costs before your office renovation finishes

Commercial fit out ideas to stand out: Gyms

As an independent gym owner you’re up against competition that have established reputations and loyal customers. Franchises are hard to compete with, but you can also use them as inspiration for your commercial fit out. How?

 

Amenities matter

Customers are spending more time than ever at the gym. Before work. After work. During their lunch break and on the weekends before they have breakfast. Installing these amenities in your commercial fit out will give you a point of difference in your marketing.

 

Sauna

After hard gym session, some patrons might want to sweat it out therapeutically.

 

Fully equipped bathrooms

Most commercial fit outs for gyms include a bathroom. These are especially popular for those before-work clients who want to fit in a workout before starting their day at the office. The bathrooms can also include locker space for the clients to hang up their work clothes or at least store their wallet. Check out the floor plan below (via Pinterest):

 

commercial fit out

 

Not everyone will have the same amount of room or budget for bathroom and locker facilities this size. But the main takeaway is to have some shower stalls, toilets, and a room for people to change. Go a bit further by adding some products everyone can use, like deodorant, hair dryers, and beauty products.

 

Kitchen

Few gyms have a dedicated kitchen where clients can heat up food or help themselves to a snack. It’s especially helpful to those who feel rushed and might skip a meal before going to work. Including a kitchen in the commercial fit out will definitely give customers a reason to recommend your gym to their friends.

As a final note, ask yourself; how can you make the gym more impressive? Design plays a major factor. Look at the rooms below:

This is a fitness facility in Italy, designed by Gruppo P&G. Natural finishes like wood add an instant warmth and welcoming atmosphere. It’s a peaceful sanctuary compared to the high-energy environment of the gym floor.

 

Planning your commercial fitout in such a highly competitive industry has it’s challenges, but nothing that Rod Johnstone Group haven’t faced before. Including amenities like these will give you an edge; they’re features clients will appreciate and give you a thumbs up for.

 

Read these for more ideas:

Amazing commercial fitouts from around the world

Commercial fitouts done by large companies have gotten better over the years thanks to public opinion being heard and innovative design being employed. The big bosses in the boardroom are paying attention to design now more than ever in order to wow customers and keep employees engaged. They certainly don’t scrimp, as you can see in the examples below.

 

Starbucks: Kyoto, Japan

This is Starbucks but not as you’re used to it. To take it to a  new level for a commercial fitout, the company has drawn inspiration from Japan’s michi-ya (teahouse) culture. This has resulted in a slightly hidden away outlet that blends in with the rest of the storefronts on Ninenzaka shopping street. Upon entering, you can order your latte or frappucino and claim a spot on the raised tatami floor, if there’s room.

commercial fitout starbucks

Starbucks done differently

Airbnb: Sydney, Australia

Airbnb leases homes and rooms from amazing locations all around the world. Their Sydney office takes workers around the world from Scandinavia to America, Asia, and good old Coogee beach. The beauty of it is that the design team took inspiration and elements from listings in those locations.

office-fitout-airbnb

One boardroom is designed after a rural Australian cabin, complete with a spoon collection. Another is painted in bright colours like a listing from Havana. There’s no doubt the designers at the company will have more ‘inspirational material’ to pick from as Airbnb’s culture thrives.

 

Dior: various boutiques

The French couture house is the epitome of excess. On the other hand, its boutiques have been designed with restraint (in most locations anyway).

With each commercial fitout, the colour palette is universal; grey with white trimming. Retaining a neutral colour scheme has allowed the clothes and other products of the house to do the talking. The furniture follows this as well. Some sitting areas have modern, linear couches and others contain French-style chairs and console tables.

 

Tsutaya: Tokyo, Japan

This book chain’s recent commercial fitout combines two great loves: books and coffee. Tsutaya takes up half of the real estate on the sixth floor of department store Ginza Six, sharing part of its space with Starbucks. Customers can sit in the cafe or the large seating area in the middle of the store with a brew and a book.

commercial construction lease

Attracting tenants when commercial construction is complete

Ordering a commercial construction is a part of your business as a building owner/landlord. Your next step is to find tenants to occupy the spaces. We’ve worked with several commercial businesses and business owners in our time, and have a few tips for you.

 

  • Scope out the neighbourhood

Before commercial construction can even begin, you’ll look at the surrounding real estate and scope out the competition. Do you see any similarities or gaps that your building can fill? How can you make your space stand out, or attract a similar business to others in the area? If your project is being done in a high-income or high-traffic area with little available real estate the odds are in your favour.

 

  • Think like a tenant

Think about your target market or have a casual conversation with businesses in the existing commercial properties. Are they happy with where they are? Some shop owners want to expand or set up another location nearby. Ask them about their landlord as well and make notes about what you can do (or do better).

Think about amenities as well. Parking space for staff and clients, amount of floor space (metres squared), and location are among the top of a tenant’s wishlist.

 

  • Get a property manager

These guys are the experts in putting office space up for lease after the commercial construction is completed. Their office is also the public face of your building when putting up ‘for lease’ or ‘for rent’ signs.

Property managers don’t have the same emotional attachment to the building or the tenants as  landlords do. This is how they easily deal with problems like setting the rent or evicting tenants. When your commercial construction is done, the property manager will organise advertising, interview tenants, and deal with them after they move in.

 

  • Make the space showroom ready

Your commercial space is on the market, and it’s time to dress it up. Or at least make sure it’s clean. The trades who took care of the commercial construction will clean up after themselves, but getting a professional cleaner is worth the expense. Depending on the type of building you’re leasing, you can furnish it for show. Or you can just leave it empty and let the visitors use their imagination.

 

  • Can you offer incentives?

The commercial property market is experiencing a ‘glut’, and on top of that other commercial building owners are offering pretty attractive deals. Phrases like ‘free rent for a set period’ or ‘furnishings included’ are thrown around on advertisements.

 

If this doesn’t suit you, highlight the amenities and benefits that tenants will experience. Highlight the coffee shops and post offices nearby that businesses will use everyday. What cost-saving measures did you put in during the commercial construction?

 

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