By Karim Fakih
The number of serviced offices has expanded considerably in recent years, from what was once considered a low-key land use in core business areas. As a result, the variables that drive demand for serviced offices have shifted, and service providers have adapted swiftly to suit these demands. This tendency has been aided by the growth of a small number of multi-national organizations that provide serviced offices in various office types and prices.
In recent years, the serviced office market has enjoyed rapid expansion and maintained high demand, which has surprised many in the property sector. But, more crucially, this pattern appears to be set to persist. The serviced office boom is being driven by recruitment, technology, and business service organizations, which have primarily supplanted dot—coms as the driving force. Furthermore, the flexibility of new-age enterprises, which desire a flexible workplace and frequently choose to outsource their property requirements, has pushed up demand. Both new and existing businesses appreciate the benefits of working with a flexible property provider.
A serviced office is essentially completely operational in every way and ready to be occupied on the spot. Typically, a serviced office business is set up to accommodate various office sizes, ranging from one person to ten people in one room. It is typical to combine several contiguous offices to accommodate a more significant number of people. However, they are typically made up of offices that can accommodate one to three persons. These are the most common sizes and may be combined in small multiples to enable expansion. New small enterprises and existing businesses expanding into new areas and organizations wishing to maintain a CBD or interstate presence while having their head office elsewhere frequently use serviced offices. Unlike vacant office space that the new tenant must fit-out, the serviced office offers a variety of amenities. Most offices come with furniture, decorations, a phone system, an internet connection, and, in some cases, a computer. Local area network printers, photocopiers, fax machines, fully equipped kitchen facilities, videoconferencing, and meeting room facilities are among the standard amenities available to all residents. In addition, there is a communal reception room and a receptionist and a telephone answering service. An associated management and customer service team of at least four people to maintain the common areas and provide ‘pay as you go’ administrative and secretarial services. In addition, mail and fax services, courier services, catering and room services, stationery supplies, travel services, meeting coordination services, IT support services, and generally any other outsourcing requirement of the client, such as assistance in recruiting secretarial or administrative staff, are typically provided. In actuality, serviced offices cover a wide variety of services, from supplying the minimal essentials to delivering cutting-edge technology and equipment, as well as entire management staff and highly personalized care.
Currently in Lebanon’s financial situation, startups and businesses are struggling to have a proper set up. Businesses in general have high costs in setting up offices, because it’s not only about renting out a space but furnishing it with all the important utilities and amenities a business might need. Serviced companies are not only more financially suitable alternatives to working from scratch but they also save the hassle. Various serviced offices are now on the rise and the flexibility in renting out these offices in terms of contracts is facilitating these businesses’ work. Serviced offices have flexible contracts that can range from a week to a month or more, depending on what the business needs, whether it’s a consultancy agent setting up a project or even a business establishing themselves. This doesn’t only facilitate the startup but also the end, consultancies that end their project will not have struggle with cleaning up and picking up what they have because just like a furnished house they can leave it all there.
The serviced office market is generating a lot of buzz, and for a good reason. It’s a service that’s adapted to the changing needs of businesses and how they work. The increase in investment into the sector and the fact that private equity funds support it are encouraging signals of future expansion. “Serviced offices allow out-of-area enterprises to enter a market with limited financial exposure that they could not otherwise have entered,” says real estate entrepreneur Giles Fuchs. This is true on a regional, national, and global scale. This eruption has just begun.
If you are looking for a business space for you or your team, no matter the number of members, check out the serviced offices options available on OLX today to find the one that suits your needs best.