As the saying goes, a change is as good as a rest so it’s only natural that our Prime Minister wanted to freshen things up after a pretty turbulent 12 months. Boris Johnson’s approach, however, has left the nation - and MPL's interior office designers - scratching their heads.
Downing Street’s new £2.6 million media briefing room is one very expensive workplace addition. Apparently, the new space was created in the interests of the public but tax payers, as the leading stakeholder in our elected Government, are questioning whether it is a wasteful vanity project.
Perhaps the public’s lack of support has been influenced by news only weeks earlier that Boris and his partner Carrie are seeking to raise money via charity to fund a six-figure interior makeover of their flat above No. 11 Downing Street.
If you are a facilities manager, office head or managing director tasked with delivering a workplace refurbishment, no doubt you will need to please stakeholders as well as staff – and want to avoid the sort of backlash that seems to follow Boris around.
MPL Interiors can help you balance functionality and finances with client expectations and corporate branding, with a collaborative and wide-reaching approach from the very start. Our aim is to avoid expensive mistakes, deliver value-for-money and enrich the workplace experience for everyone involved.
A discovery phase, which includes a detailed consultation process with stakeholders and staff, is critical in identifying the different business objectives that need to influence a new office design and layout.
When MPL embarks on such a process, we usually discover that positioning the brand to reach a new demographic is top of the list for the marketing director; increasing desk capacity is the main goal of the head of resources, while employees want a more comfortable break out area. Uniting all the business objectives, using them to influence a set of designs and presenting a cohesive concept is a far better approach than jumping to fabric colours and light fittings first, for instance.
Of course, the biggest aggravator when refurbishing is the budget - MPL is acutely aware of how interested parties will assess value-for-money. If cash is splashed but the result is unfulfilling, overly flash or ostentatiously off message, trust can be instantly eroded among staff and stakeholders, and relationships irrevocably damaged.
If an upfront splurge isn’t feasible, leasing is a sensible way to finance refurbishment works. Manageable monthly repayments can be agreed over three- or five-year terms instead of a paying for works in full upon completion – a budget-friendly and kinder alternative that keeps fund available for other ventures.
Speak to MPL about leasing, financial control and value-for-money when planning your office renovation.