July 30, 2021

3 Things You Must Know Before Designing and Building Your New Workspace


Wouldn’t it be nice to design and build your new workspace faster with less hiccups? That’s where a design-build partner, like Formcraft, steps up to the plate. Instead of hiring multiple firms for one project, you can hire one full-service firm. Hiring a design-build partner eases communication with design and construction teams and mitigates risk of project delay in between documentation and construction.

Unlike traditional methodology, our management, design, architecture, and construction teams overlap and intertwine from start to finish. The Formcraft Methodology gets jobs done 25% faster, removes the gaps, and streamlines the process into a single point of responsibility. Our expertise puts us in the perfect position to offer three things owner-occupiers need to know before designing and building your new workspace.

Picking the Right Location

Before designing and building your new workplace environment, consider which location makes the most sense. You’ll need to think about how your building’s location impacts your employees and clients. Where is a good central location to balance out commute times? Do your employees typically drive, bike, or walk to work? How long do your clients have to travel to meet with you? How many parking spots does the new facility need? Questions like these can help determine whether the city or the suburbs is a better option, and then the conversation moves to neighborhoods.

As a design-build partner in Philadelphia, Formcraft knows the benefits of building in surrounding neighborhoods. While some neighborhoods have a more aesthetic presence, they might not be the best financial decision. Some neighborhoods have better access to trails than others, which is highly important if your office is commuter-heavy. We’ll walk you through all the options to choose which neighborhood makes the most sense for your new office.

Talking About the Future

Part of picking the right location involves conversations about the future. How long do you want to stay at your new workplace? If you plan on selling your facility in five years, you want to avoid overcapitalization when designing and building now. A design-build partner helps with this because the construction, design, and architecture teams are in constant communication about pricing and availability.

If you plan to make permanent roots in your new space, then customizing is a great option to make your brand come alive. If future plans are up in the air, consider a more neutral design and build-out so you don’t overcommit just to leave in a few years. Keep an open mind about downsizing or expanding plans, as anything can happen. Over the last year, companies downsized office square footage to accommodate new full-time remote or hybrid-work models. If you plan to incorporate remote work as you build a new facility, consider downsizing. When you plan to hire several new full-time, in-house employees, consider expanding. If you’re unsure of the company’s future, try keeping your project plans flexible.

Think About Hybrid Workspace and Balancing WFH and WFO

A design-build partner will help you think about the hybrid workspace when designing and building your new facility. This could include agile workspaces like soft seating areas, quiet spaces, iso-stations, outdoor workspaces, and standing workstations. These spaces provide maximum flexibility to your employees, empowering them to work where, how, and when they choose. 

Desk hoteling or “hot desking” is a new trend where employees are no longer assigned permanent desks. This allows them to move around within the workplace environment to work where they prefer. This is a great tool for collaboration and overall employee happiness—which is crucial to your design and build. If hot desking isn’t up your alley, mobile workstations are another way for your employees to have flexibility in their day-to-day. 

Ideally, keeping the design flexible reduces the need to completely reconstruct if a spacing issue arises. The more flexible you keep your overall layout, the more adaptable the office becomes to remote workers, new hires, or any other drastic team changes.

The Cost of Building

In our post-COVID world, the cost of building materials is more expensive. Whether it’s longer lead times or delays in production, we’re experiencing a real-time increase in cost. This directly affects owner-occupiers who have the unique responsibility of acquiring permits, hiring a designer and contractor, figuring out finances, and handling these fluctuating costs of building materials.

As a design-build partner, Formcraft handles these supply chain issues at the beginning of the project to ensure the materials are there when needed. Traditional methods take longer to address these issues, as multiple teams are making the decisions. Our full-service team handles all of the above for you, ensuring the rising cost of building materials is a non-issue in the supply chain system.

Ready to get started? As the design-build partner for owner-occupiers, Formcraft is the perfect fit for your project: