“Sweat your assets” has become a key phrase in modern business. To put it in simple terms it involves a critical examination of the assets within your business to ensure you are getting the best possible return. One of the most expensive assets in your business is the premises that you operate from whether it be it owned or leased. Getting the best return on your investment in office / retail space is key to success. We felt it would be helpful to put together a few tips for business owners when considering business storage as a means of generating the best return from their workspace.
Cost per square foot
Evaluate the effective space within your premises by measuring the square footage of the potential space to be used and use it as a barometer to measure against the cost of storage. In general terms the cost of storage space is considerably cheaper than the same footprint of office or retail space available to you. If you have carried out this exercise and are considering using business storage as a solution make sure that you plan in the correct manner and get the best use of the space rented. Maximising the cubic space provided by your storage provider should be just as important as making the decision in the first place. Pay particular attention to the additional height open to you (cubic feet versus square feet).
Am I making the best use of my space?
By removing 6 average sized filing cabinets you will create the footprint for one additional employee workstation. Think about it and ask yourself if you are managing the paper flow effectively in the business. Are you creating and keeping paperwork which would be best archived offsite or worse still are you building up paperwork which you are not required to keep at all !!! I would conservatively guess that at least 80% of businesses are filing paperwork which will never be accessed in the future especially if your business is more than 10 years in existance where older practices with regard to paperwork have become the norm. Critically evaluate paper flow and check with relevant authorities regarding what must be kept for audit purposes within your particular sector.
How often do I access things?
Are you storing obsolete stock in your warehouse? Are you storing marketing and exhibition equipment on site? Is your business seasonal? If the answer to any of these questions is yes you should be considering business storage as a solution. Holding up space in your premises for such reasons is detrimental to your success. You can manage obsolete or redundant stock more effectively by isolating it from fast moving lines and the cost of storage will then drive you towards making clear decisions on how to progress. If you are using third party carriers to manage delivery to and from exhibitions why not give this equipment to us at Mobile Storage Services where we can offer an end to end solution for exhibitions including delivery and assembly and store in between shows. Having worked in this area for many years, Mobile Storage Services was created for this very reason when the owners identified a need to reduce handling and damage when managing exhibitions.
Make an inventory
If you decide that the best solution to your space problem is to use outside storage make sure to create an inventory listing of the documents within various boxes. Business storage is somewhat different to self storage, because a business will need access to certain belongings in their unit at short notice and it must also be remembered that a number of people may need to access the stored belongings of a business at any time and that may not necessarily be the actual person who packed it in the first place. If you are to get the best return on your investment in business storage you should plan it in the same way that you plan other strategic solutions within your business.
Save on transport
When evaluating what storage provider to use make sure to choose a company who are located near to your premises or at least a company who can give you access to your belongings at short notice. At Mobile Storage Services we have a unique offering whereby we can have your complete storage cube back at your premises within hours (locked and as you loaded it) so that you can access important documents for audits etc. without delay. If you are evaluating various business storage options we would strongly advise that ease of access to your files or equipment is a key driver in your decision making process.
A clean and orderly working environment is a key element in any modern professional business. “Clear desk – clear mind” is a phrase which really does matter. By managing your workspace you will create an effective working area for your employees, give the right impression to your current clients and it will ultimately help you to attract new business. The big benefit with business storage is that there are no leases or long term commitments. You can increase or reduce your dependency on storage to suit your business model. At Mobile Storage Services we can cater for short term storage from a couple of hours right up to a number of years so we will have a solution that fits your needs. Take a couple of hours out of your busy week and evaluate your current space and ask yourself the question “Am I really getting the best return on this investment?”.
Image by Moumou82 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons