In our recent article “How Much is a Serviced Office?“ we explained the difficulties involved in calculating the cost of a Serviced Office because there are so many variants in the serviced office industry which make for a complicated and fluctuating pricing structure. One of the variants which we promised to come back to was the widely debated issue of whether a serviced office should be priced on a per work station or square foot basis.
Easy Offices is the only serviced office broker to quote office prices per square foot, below we explain why.
Traditionally the serviced office industry will price office space based on a “per work station per month“ basis. One of the biggest problems with this method is the use of the word “workstation“ which is ambiguous because it really means very little in terms of size. There is no fixed area enforced by the serviced office industry to which a workstation must comply and therefore the term fails to convey any sense of preset dimension. Starting from as low as around 55 sq ft to as large as around 80 sq ft, the size of a workstation varies from office to office and provider to provider.
Although office space companies may in some cases have their own preset work station allowance, more often than not the work station size is simply left undetermined when quoting prices. Therefore, quoting on a price per workstation basis can often give an entirely wrong, or totally unclear, perception of how big an office is, making accurate price comparisons almost impossible. Let’s take the following as an example:
Serviced Office 1 is a 4 person office @ ~500 per person per month = ~2000.00 pcm
Serviced Office 2 is a 4 person office @ ~600 per person per month = ~2400.00 pcm
Assuming that both of the offices are offering the same standard of office space and charge the same for all “add on“ rates (e.g. IT and telecom packages) it looks as though Serviced Office 1 is a better deal by a mile saving companies ~400.00 every month. However, what the above comparison fails to take into consideration is the size which the Serviced Offices allow per person, something which could vary dramatically between the two offices. Here are the quotes again together with the office sizes:
Serviced Office 1 is a 4 person office @ ~500 per person per month = ~2000.00 pcm AND the office is 200sqft
Serviced Office 2 is a 4 person office @ ~600 per person per month = ~2400.00 pcm AND the office is 250sqft
To really appreciate who is giving the best deal we need to work out the square footage price of the office.
Serviced Office 1 is 200sqft @ ~2000.00pm = ~10.00 per square foot per month
Serviced Office 2 is 250sqft @ ~2400.00 pm = ~9.60 per square foot per month
When costs are broken down in this way it becomes clear that office 2 is actually better value, the problem with quoting per work station very simply is that companies don’t know how much space they are getting for their money.
So why don’t serviced office companies offer prices by square foot rather than by per workstation? Granted some companies searching for office space may just look at the final costs and make their choice based solely on price alone, often because such businesses simply do not need a lot of space so go for the cheaper option. Mostly, however, companies want to know exactly what they are paying for and why. It really comes down to the psychology of price.
At Easy Offices we sit independently within the serviced office market so it is really important for us to give truthful pricing information to our clients who should be able to make accurate price comparisons between the serviced office options that we present to them. Some clients do find our prices confusing as they are quoted on a monthly, rather than annual, basis. This is done because most companies take serviced office space on a monthly basis so it just makes more sense to quote per month! We believe that price per square foot per month gives the most accurate and genuinely useful information based on the renting terms of the serviced office industry whereas quoting per work station is, by and large, a misleading representation of the value that companies stand to get from their next office space.
For further information on renting serviced offices give our sales team a call today on 0800 085 5050 and we’ll help find the perfect office to suit your business needs.