In today’s competitive environment businesses are always on the lookout for ways to improve productivity and efficiency, without increasing their overheads.
Furthermore, many businesses are crossing geographies and exploring opportunities in new territories. For many of them, it isn’t always possible to have the complete office set-up ready from day one. These businesses have the budgets, but they need to study the market and scout for locations that suit their needs before making the investment.
This is where business centres come as a boon to many a new company that is looking to establish a foothold in this tough marketplace or as an easier, more flexible way of working for established companies.
Its meaning: What makes a business centre?
A business centre can be termed as an office away from the office. This is a professionally managed commercial facility, and it offers professionals and companies alike a wide range of business support and services, for short- to medium-term requirements.
The beauty of a business centre lies in its flexibility. Customers have the option of selecting infrastructure as per their needs. They can choose from a range of fixed or customized services, for a specific period, or as and when they need it.
Its history: How did it all begin?
Business centres trace their origin back to 1929 in the USA during the Great Depression. Times were bad, but businesses had to continue, work had to be done and money had to be made. However, all this needed to be done while limiting expenses and cutting costs wherever possible.
A small group of attorneys began to gather in common workplaces, sharing management costs, and the expense of meeting rooms and office assistants. And that’s how a business centre first came into existence.
Its usage: What are the advantages of business centres?
Business centres have typically been used by accountants, wealth managers or other professionals looking for a place or a desk to work from.
Today, the use has broadened, and entrepreneurs and MNCs alike, use a business centre as the perfect setting to operate from.
There is no hassle of putting together services and support infrastructure critical for the business. And there is no immediate investment in buying or leasing a place either.
Customers of a business centre can use these services as they see fit for their needs
Additionally, most business centres are already located at prominent addresses. This way, clients can start to benefit from the advantages that a well-connected location brings.
A business centre often includes semi-private offices, private offices and also executive suites. Many business centres are fully equipped with boardrooms and tech-enabled meeting rooms as well.
Clients can also use support services like fax machines, photocopiers or printing facilities, which get billed at the end of the month. From a tax perspective, this works quite well as these monthly bills can be claimed as office expenses.
What is the present day scenario?
Business centres have been around for a while now and their demand is only going to increase. Most of these spaces come with fully-furnished offices, state-of-the-art infrastructure and complete technical support. However, before you pick one, there are a few pointers to consider.
*Location: You need to find a business centre that is centrally located. Which means proximity to the main business hub, financial centres, transport services and recreation facilities.
*Executive offices: The centre should offer the best possible business infrastructure, and have well-maintained and fully-equipped offices.
*Technological support: Basics like wi-fi, business support services, voice and video facilities, AC control, printing and copying facilities, power back-up, etc. are a must
*Meeting rooms: The business centre must offer a combination of fixed as well as flexible facilities, option to scale up and down, video conferencing and LCD projectors, etc.
*Hospitality: A professional receptionist, well-maintained guest handling procedures, snacks and refreshment options, housekeeping facilities and end-to-end maintenance support complete the business centre package.
The business landscape today is dotted with entrepreneurs and start-ups who wish to simply take an idea and turn it into something large and noteworthy. What they require is the infrastructure support and office services to be able to take off from. The seed might have been planted during the Great Depression; however, the times are anything but disheartening now. Entrepreneurship is widening its reach, and business centres are at the heart of this movement, continuing to support innovative business ideas in the years to come.