Does Your Business Need Premises?
The question posed in the title of this article may strike you as strange. Does your business need premises? “Of course it does,” you think, “all businesses have premises after a certain point.”
That’s true, of course; most businesses, once they have matured into viable enterprises, tend to move into dedicated premises. However, just because that’s what usually happens doesn’t mean that’s what has to happen for your business.
The Downsides of Premises
In truth, the working world has changed so much that premises should be seen as an option rather than a necessity. When you investigate further, you can quickly see how running dedicated premises is actually bad for your business:
- The cost. Premises cost money, and it’s a static amount of money that rarely fluctuates, so if your business has a bad month you still have to pay the same amount of rent.
- The inconvenience. More and more people are enjoying life untethered from office desks; freelancing, remote working, and flexible hours are becoming commonplace. Given that we’re all embracing the need for an improved work-life balance, having official premises is just guaranteeing that anyone who wants to work for you is going to have to subject themselves to a commute. This seems odd, given how easy it is to work remotely — but still collaboratively — in the modern world.
- The environmental concerns. Business premises aren’t necessarily bad for the environment, but it’s still a space that will be consuming resources such as power and water– not to mention the extra pollution from all of that commuting.
When you consider all of the above, sticking to the idea that business premises are somehow required begins to feel a little… well, last century.
You may like the idea of going premises-free, but feel nervous at the prospect. Many business owners worry that if their employees work from home, they just won’t work– but employees who work from home are more productive than those who work in an office.
Another concern you may have is assembling the staff you need for your business to function. Is it really possible for everyone to work from home? If you have a large company, that’s a lot of staff you will need to coordinate. Thankfully, there are options here too, but by far the most preferable is outsourcing. Rather than directly employing people to perform business tasks like IT management and accountancy, you can hire a company to perform managed IT services or bookkeeping on your behalf. Secondly, outsourcing means you don’t have any of the legal responsibilities you would have if you were employing a full staff for business premises. You can outsource specific areas of the business, and ensure there’s no wastage, or time lost to staff recruitment and training.
So Would You Switch?
Ultimately, it’s still going to be a few years before businesses wholesale adapt to the idea of abandoning business premises once and for all– but do you think you might be tempted to be ahead of the curve?