Future 50: Suffolk office renovations reflect pandemic recovery
Suffolk-based businesses are showing that businesses in the East are growing in confidence.
Some companies can provide an indication of the health of the economy at large. When ushers are busy times must be tough; but as we emerge from the Covid pandemic, the activity of Source One Consulting office renovation and redevelopment specialists suggests that the business community is feeling confident again.
“When the pandemic started, I was worried,” admits founder Pat Lewis. “You spend 20 years building your business and then you wonder what’s going to happen to it. It was shocking – it was a shock to everyone. But then calm down and look at where your opportunities are, as a ‘business. “
The family business, based in Ipswich with an administrative base in Royston in Herfordshire, specializes in the design, layout and renovation of offices. She can procure and provide everything necessary for the renovation of the premises or the success of a move to new offices.
“I realized that if people were to downsize, we have an opportunity – because wherever they go they will likely need to be reconfigured to suit their business. If people grow, it’s the same, ”says Lewis. “So the first few months of the pandemic were a shock, but we still had projects going on, working with a lot of ‘core’ clients, which meant we could keep going. ”
Business remained slow during the first lockdown, but started to pick up from October – and now Source One is, according to Mr Lewis, busier than ever. But is it busy with office downsizing – or expansions?
“I would say 75% of the companies we deal with want to expand and move to new, bigger premises,” says Lewis. “I don’t know if it’s a regional issue. London is the same. .
Source One works across the country – with clients from Newcastle to Yeovil – but the majority of its clients are in the East. “And most of our clients want to grow, grow their business… that’s something positive,” says Lewis.
“We’ve worked with companies where people will continue to work from home, but then move into a more agile work environment,” he adds. “These need to be approached differently. We need to provide more open spaces for personnel to mingle – landing zones that are not so closed in which personnel feel “safe”.
“This is such a strange time, our advice is, if you don’t have to rush to change offices, don’t rush. Give it a year, because the changes you make now won’t be. maybe not needed in 12 months’ time when the world can hopefully get back to normal – and then you might want to change it again. So why spend money twice if you don’t. do not need?
“It’s important to us,” says Lewis. “As a family business, we don’t work on commission, it’s not about how much money we make – it’s doing the right thing for the customer. “
This may mean undertaking feasibility studies for office moves, determining if a potential space is truly suitable for a client. “We have sometimes looked at three or even four buildings,” Mr. Lewis said. “We don’t charge for that – I see it as a relationship factor.
“If you don’t build these relationships, things don’t happen,” he concludes. Now things are moving, with clients in all industries. As businesses in the region grow, relocate and renovate their offices, Source One will continue to be busy.
For more information see www.sourceoneconsulting.co.uk