As businesses grow and their strategies develop, having just one central office can start to feel limiting. Maybe there are too many employees to fit comfortably in the organization’s headquarters, or maybe there are a host of new business opportunities to be explored elsewhere.
These issues don’t necessarily need to become a hindrance to a business’s growth. In fact, opening a satellite office is often a great solution to these problems.
What is a Satellite Office?
A satellite office is defined as a branch of a company that’s physically separated from the main office, whether just a few miles away or in an entirely different country. These offices can range in size depending on the number of employees located there and the purpose of the space, but they are usually smaller than headquarters. Sometimes referred to as a branch office, satellite offices can also be less costly than opening a large new office, remodeling current space, or relocating.
Of course, it’s not only large companies that have satellite offices. Smaller organizations often utilize them for reasons other than outgrowing the main office. For example, new location needs like partnering with a company in a different country or wanting to appeal to talent in a specific area also warrant opening satellite offices.
Unquestionably, there are numerous benefits to opening a satellite office for business growth and opportunity. Any business considering a satellite office, however, needs to think carefully about what they’re trying to achieve with this new space and how it fits into their overall business strategy.
Satellite offices as a solution for growing businesses
One of the most basic reasons for opening a new satellite office is that a company has grown and its mission has evolved, leading to the need for more space and the ability to connect with people somewhere other than headquarters. This makes satellite offices a popular option for growing businesses.
For instance, perhaps a company is hiring more people and needs more space, but doesn’t want to relocate the entire business. Luckily with today’s technology, it is easier than ever to have workers who aren’t centralized in one location. In this case, a satellite office allows the company to keep the benefits of their current location and office space but still expand. Opening a satellite office can be a much simpler solution than making employees relocate, and is beneficial for a growing company, especially if remote employees or rotating shifts within the main office aren’t viable options.
Satellite offices for business strategy
On the other hand, an organization may choose to open a satellite office as a strategic development initiative. For example, many innovative companies are looking to partner and collaborate with others; this can be easier when they are in close proximity to one another rather than working together remotely.
For others, opening a satellite office is done to attract local talent—think popular startup or tech hubs, like Silicon Valley. Many businesses have found it easier to attract specific talent if you come to them, so an office in the vicinity can be extremely helpful. On a similar note, some companies will choose to open satellite offices near colleges and universities that have been producing a lot of desirable talent.
Another reason to open a satellite office is to expand to a new market. Having employees on the ground interacting with potential customers in a new location can be valuable for forming cultural connections and understanding the target market. For some, satellite offices can be used to test the waters in a new location before opening a larger office. It’s also a great opportunity to put employees closer to the customers, which is especially helpful if certain employees work closely with other businesses or clients. A satellite office is a perfect place to host business meetings and professional events that are conveniently located for both your employees and those you work with.
Choosing non-traditional spaces
One more thing to consider is the kind of space for a satellite office to be in. While a more traditional private office space is a common choice, a company’s goals may steer them towards a more untraditional workspace, like a coworking office or other type of flexible workspace arrangement. Many coworking space providers have also branched out to offer flexible real estate options, like short-term rent and lease agreements for private office space.
These choices can give a company more mobility, helpful if they’re still searching for the right location or space to expand into. Additionally, coworking spaces that are shared with other businesses and individuals can be very beneficial for a company looking to attract new talent or collaborate with others, because they give ample opportunity for networking and sharing ideas.