What are the Risks Involved in a Design & Build Project?

Feb 15, 2023 Written by Rhino Team

There’s no avoiding the fact that the design and build process comes with risk.

But what exactly are these risks, and what can you do to mitigate against it, both for yourself and your organisation?

In this blog, we’ll run through the risks you need to be aware of, why they’re important, and what can be done about them.  

What are the two key types of risk involved in design & build projects?

While ‘risk’ can be viewed as  a little intangible, it can be categorised into two groups, both of which you need to be aware of.

Construction risk

This category of risk includes any building site risks to both people and property.

Slips, cuts, shocks, falls and trips are all covered by this category, as well as damage to the property during the construction process.

These risks are important to be aware of, however, a well-established fit-out contractor should be on top of these risks; with all the necessary accreditations and insurance, giving you the peace of mind that you never have to worry about them. 

Organisational risk

The second, and more relevant, risk is the risk to your organisation. 

Get this wrong and it can prove damaging to staff morale and negatively impact overall efficiencies. Here’s what you need to know.

What is the single biggest risk in design & build projects?

The single biggest risk to your organisation during a design & build project is making incorrect decisions.

While this may seem obvious, there are a lot of important decisions you need to make when planning, preparing and executing a design & build project. 

During your preparation it’s essential to consider:

The location of your workplace

Geography is essential – is your workplace in the right place for your people?

If you want a vibrant office full of happy people, it’s important that your workplace is easy to get to, and is surrounded by all required amenities. 

While a full office move may not be on the cards, if it is, and you’re unsure where is best to move your organisation to, we highly recommend getting in touch with our workplace consultants at Rhino. We’re here to help advise on the optimal location to base your operation, one that works best for your people.

The impact of hybrid working

Hybrid working is here to stay, your workplace needs to allow for that.

This means cultivating an environment where people can do their best work, be that at home or from the office. 

Many people find that they do their best focused work from home, with the workplace becoming a hub for collaborative, team-based work. 

The main risk here is that many organisations are designing their workplaces based on outdated criteria, ones that were likely set up pre-pandemic and are now of little use at all. Create a workplace based on these criteria, and you’ll find that employees don’t want to come into the office, and are significantly less effective when they are in.

To avoid this, we again recommend talking to our workplace consultants. Our specialists are well versed in helping organisations assess the impact that hybrid working has had on their daily processes. We will get to know your team, learn what they want and need from your workspace, before advising you on what direction your design & build project should take. 

Remember: your workplace is a tool, what do your employees need to get their jobs done? We’re here to answer this question and more. You can get in touch here

Are you going through a growth phase?

As many organisations have learned lately, fluctuation should be expected.

If you’re going through a growth phase, you need to know that the building you’re in can grow (or shrink) with you. 

Understanding how much office space your business needs can be difficult, which is why we wrote a guide to help

Generally speaking, we recommend that you choose a space which is able to sustain you for years to come, especially if you’re considering investing in a design & build project. Consider your projected growth, decide whether you may need to downsize in the near future and factor this into your decision-making process.

What happens if you fail to address organisational risk?

Failing to address organisational risk can have serious business consequences. Fail to take into consideration this risk, and you might:

-Lose, or fail to hire the right employees – Workplace quality and flexibility are serious factors for candidates looking for their next role, and may be one of the driving factors that makes your existing employees look for work elsewhere.

-Struggle to encourage employees back into the office when they need to be – Most people have learned that they can be perfectly effective when working from home. Your workplace should be a place where people want to work, making the decision to stay at home a difficult one.

-Suffer from reduced efficiency across the board – Inefficiently designed workplaces can have a dramatic impact on workplace efficiency. Designs should make movement easy and effective, and should also facilitate both collaborative and focused work. 

-See increased levels of absenteeism and poor morale – Forcing people to work in a space where they’re not comfortable will, naturally, impact morale. Many organisations see significantly lower levels of absenteeism and dramatically improved morale following a professional design & build project

Take the right next steps

A design & build project is a significant undertaking, one that you shouldn’t handle alone.

At Rhino, we offer a comprehensive workplace design & build service, starting from initial consultation.

Whether that’s helping you choose the best building for your employees, all the way through to designing and building your perfect space, our team of specialists are here to help. 

We use over 45 years’ experience to deliver workspaces and projects that meet your employee and business needs, boosting productivity, attracting the best talent and improving communication within teams.

When you’re ready to talk, you can get in touch with us here

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If you have a question, if you are looking for some bespoke advice, get in touch with our experts today, we’d love to hear about your project.

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