Don't jump straight into that new office design project just yet. We discuss seven essentials that should be on everyone's pre-project checklist.

1. How will your company scale in size over the next five years?

So, you want to make sure that you’re making the most of your chosen space to accommodate your company’s short-term future growth plans? Consider that most commercial leases start at a standard length of five years, After all, you want to make sure you’ve got the space and facilities to attract and retain your industry’s top talent.

2. How do most of your employees get to work?

There are different factors to consider when designing for a suburban office or a city centre office, and this one is key. If you have a lot of staff cycling into work, then you'll need to provide bike storage and changing or shower spaces so that your team can ride to work and not worry about creasing clothes or sweating for the rest of the day!

3. Budget

This will set the tone of your refurbishment - are you looking to do a soft refresh with new carpets, furniture and a coat of paint, or are you going back to the core of the building and starting completely from scratch?

4. How your teams work

Each team will operate slightly differently and may be more productive with access to areas that complement their unique workplace needs. While your finance team might be content at their desks, the marketing or sales teams would benefit from standing communal tables, giving them a chance to move about for team discussions.

5. Strategic proximities

While some teams should be situated next to each other because they work closely throughout the day (e.g. marketing next to communications) we also think about strategic proximities for shared facilities. Some might benefit from increased impromptu interaction.

6. Technology

Implementing new ways of working is often a big organisational change that requires support from across the business, including IT. If your new fit out is going to be based around agile working, free-addressing or hot desking, then you need to make sure that IT is on board to support the change. Reliable laptops, strong WiFi and connected meeting rooms are just the beginning!

7. Your brand

Think about how your fit out can best represent your brand, and how this experience can enhance your everyday operations. This will usually start with predominant colours used throughout your office’s design, however extends far deeper to the workplace setup, ways of working and the overall experience of your office.