Unnecessary office costs


ISSN: 0263-2772

Article publication date: 1 March 2000




(2000), "Unnecessary office costs", Facilities, Vol. 18 No. 3/4. https://doi.org/10.1108/f.2000.06918cab.002



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

Unnecessary office costs

Unnecessary office costs

Keyword: Spatial management

A typical office occupier overestimates the amount of meeting room space it requires by between 20 per cent and 40 per cent, leading to unnecessarily high property costs and new office requirements that are significantly greater than needed.

According to detailed research by Morgan Lovell, the workplace specialist, "abuse" of meeting rooms - typically where rooms are booked for meetings and then not actually used - creates the false impression that occupiers need more meeting room space. In many cases the opposite is true.

Morgan Lovell has conducted in-depth, quantitative studies of meeting room use, comparing space booked with space actually used, on more than 20 companies in the past two years. The studies reveal that, up to 50 per cent of the time, meeting rooms are booked but not used.

Farrol Goldblatt, head of consultancy at Morgan Lovell said: "This has dramatic implications for a company's property costs. We estimate that by cutting out abuse of meeting rooms, occupiers can make significant savings on both existing space and new space they may take in future."

As an example, Morgan Lovell estimates that a company occupying a 25,000 sq. ft office building within the M25 could be wasting up to £37,000 a year in occupancy costs through meeting room "abuse". For a city occupier with 100,000 sq. ft and a higher overhead base, the figure could be as high as £200,000.

There are a number of ways to reduce the need for dedicated meeting rooms, according to Morgan Lovell. These include:

  • using existing cellular offices for meetings;

  • using more informal, non-bookable meeting tables in open-plan areas;

  • holding informal meetings in staff restaurants outside busy periods;

  • educating staff about the cost implications of aborted meeting room bookings.

For further information, please contact: Farrol Goldblatt, Morgan Lovell. Tel: +44 (0) 171 734 4466; Dominic Morgan, GCI Focus. Tel: +44 (0) 171 600 1392.

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