We sat down with Jeanette Grover Rapport’s Project Director and our independent designer Will to find out what considerations need to be addressed when considering budgets for your workspace design or fit-out.

What’s your advice on workspace utilisation?

Jeanette: That’s driven naturally, given limited, available good quality space and the cost associated to today’s work space.  Space needs to be utilised effectively.

Will: In terms of the look and feel from a furniture perspective, creating flexibility’ while balancing privacy is an important aspect.

Open plan space has its benefits, enabling increased occupancy and flexibility to change within an organisation.  However, considerations to noise and privacy will be paramount to its users and their long-term health.

White noise systems, acoustic flooring, wall and ceiling panelling can all be incorporated effectively into the design of the working space, depending on the individual need.

A successful design/designer and management team should provide a functional space that’s realistic, flexible AND atheistically pleasing.

What building constraints could there be?

Will:  Older buildings with smaller floor plates can divide an organisation and increase fit-out costs.

Restructuring and improving departmental efficiencies by being more strategic in its designed environment is crucial.

Can a budget have an impact on the effectiveness of design?

budgets Jeanette: Budget comes in conjunction with the design process and building selection.  Some clients don’t have a clue what their budget is.

The selection of the most appropriate procurement route should always be based on client needs. Consider, as an absolute minimum, programme, cost and quality expectations.

You can design creating minimal cellular space within the right building and therefore, the budget is not going to be high.   Or you can design high spec, and the budget is naturally higher. One can’t come without the other.

Taking early professional advice, understanding your organisations’ future needs and planning at least 6-months before you need to move (dependent on your lease terms) or refurbish plans will all assist in managing project costs.

Jeanette: Rapport are well placed to offer an independent assessment to identify the best procurement route for our client. One of the benefits of appointing a company like Rapport is we independently manage the entire project programme.

A turnkey ‘Design and Build’ process whereby you have design and contractor working together can make it difficult to monitor costs closely.  Rapport provides clients with cost certainty, and we offer an open book tender process. Design and Build companies are useful if you have limited time and limitless budgets.

We can be appointed to work in two ways;

  1. We plan and detail the design packages. From this, we prepare the contract scope of works which in turn is tendered to main contractors.  Through an open book tender, we select the main contractor and manage the fit-out process on behalf of our client.
  2. As an independent unbiased advisor, we can be appointed to oversee a Design and Build Company.

UK Broadband and Jagermeister appointed Rapport in this capacity to check design practicalities and cost associations within the design and build process.  We can help monitor costs and performance through the programme as an Employers Agent.

With an excellent track record in project managing office fit-outs for end-user clients, our projects range in value from £20,000 to £1.2 million.

Having Rapport on your team ensures expertise on design, and removes additional costly contractor layers throughout the project programme.

We are always delighted to hear from those working on a workspace design or fit-out project.  You can speak with us on 01252 712590 or email us at info@rapport-solutions.org.uk.

You can view our portfolio of work here

Office Design Case Study: SBHG

SBHGMoving offices is a significant investment for any business, and we are proud to have worked on some incredible projects over the years across a variety of sectors including; media, banking, finance and technology with a strong portfolio of projects for housing associations.

Throughout our time in the industry, we have built many strong relationships with our clients. And at the core of our business is Rapport. We believe it is a crucial component to the successful outcome of a project, from a clear brief.

In particular, Rapport was integral to two for Shepherds Bush Housing Group (SBHG) including SBHG HQ and SBHG Craft Court. We sat down with David Blackburn, to talk through his time at SBHG on the projects and to understand the learnings and effectiveness of both projects. David, as Director of Business Support, was key to the success of the project supporting internal communication between staff, management and the delivery team.

David, what learnings did you take away from working with Rapport on the Shepherds Bush housing projects?

Your office accommodation is one of your most valuable assets. Over the life of your tenure, you need to ensure you manage the space in a way that is responsive, affordable, sustainable and safe; leveraging the floor plan as a tool to support organisational culture and assist in the delivery of ever more efficient and effective services.


Rapport’ has recently been commissioned to manage and develop design options for Verisk Analytics at their Fleet office in Hampshire.

As a leading source of insurance data information, our team will provide an objective review of Verisk’s current space and work practices in addition to designing a new floor to accommodate new ways of working to improve internal communication and ensure further growth and development.

Actions to date:

  • Workspace analysis
  • Design and cost options

Size: 7.620 sq ft across two floors

Location: Fleet, Hampshire

Services: Design, Management & Cost Consultancy

If you are in the process of planning a relocation project or refurbishment programme and would like further advice, do get in touch.
01252 712590 

A recent report reveals 83% of technology experts believe they should play a key role in how the built environment operates.

The report ‘Future proof real estate: is the property sector ready for the 2020’s’ conducted by Osborne Clarke and FTI consulting researched 500 technology experts for the report which focuses emerging tech trends.

The most significant advice from the report looks at the need for property companies to be ready and ‘act quickly’ with tech trends for wide-scale adoption by 2021.

Savannah de Savary, from ‘Built-ID,’ the digital platform for those who want to discover who and what the best agents of change in the built environment explains:

“The single, greatest impact that technology giants such as Apple, Google and Facebook are having on the built environment – both in terms of how they are shaping their workspace and local communities and their recent move into creating digital cities – is that property companies are realising that they need to up their game.”

De Savary raises the “Amazon effect” on Seattle as a prime example. The tech company’s headquarters which operations in Seattle have been credited with adding $38 billion to the city’s economy, with a commensurate impact on real estate values and employment

In the UK, she sees brands such as Google at King’s Cross, Snap at Fitzrovia and Twitter in Soho as perpetrators of “real estate ripple effect.”

“Landlords are bending over backwards to woo tech companies and moreover, looking for ways to replicate their approach to real estate. They have observed how these companies approach workspace design and spread their influence into place making, using music, art and culture to attract the best and create destinations.”

De Savary also believes that tech companies are influencing building design and sustainability Her reference point on
this is Bloomberg’s new European HQ in London has just been voted the world’s most sustainable office building with a plethora of innovative operational, power, lighting, water and ventilation systems.

“Founder Michael Bloomberg was very much the visionary for this, working in partnership with architect Norman Foster, and the result is a shining beacon for other companies and city planners to try and emulate.”

De Savary hopes that the symbiotic relationship between the worlds of technology and property continues to flourish.

“Technology is now shaping every aspect of our world for the better, and the same applies to the built environment!”

PropTech UK – UKPA represents and assists companies and individuals who are active in the UK’s PropTech sector, promoting engagement between technology business and the property industry. 

To read and download the full report, click here.

If you are in the process of planning a relocation project or refurbishment programme and would like further advice, do get in touch.
01252 712590 

Women’s Pioneer Housing is London’s largest provider of low cost rented homes to women and women-headed households who are increasingly priced out of London’s housing market.  Managing over 1000 homes in Kensington & Chelsea, Hammersmith & Fulham, Westminster, Wandsworth, Ealing, Harrow and Hillingdon they are today one of the few social housing landlords still building new homes in central London.   Over the next 4 years, their current site in Wood Lane W12 will be demolished and redeveloped to provide further residential units alongside a new HQ office.

Our team at Rapport are proud to be part of this process and will work with the organisation to manage the detailed solutions’ dialogue phase of the procurement. This will involve identifying workspace needs, evaluating design proposals and commenting on how they might be improved.   A temporary relocation for the duration of the construction period will be put in place.  Our team will continue to support Women’s Pioneer through each phase of the development to ensure that the new office accommodation delivers their organisational requirements for the future.

Actions to date: Workplace Analysis & Scheme Development

Location: Wood Lane, London W12

Services: Workspace consultancy

Rapport continues to provide professional and innovative construction consultancy services for an increasing range of clients and their projects, in both the public and private sectors.   With a history of working with Housing Associations, we have previously delivered projects for Shepherd’s Bush Housing Association, Rosebery Housing and currently, in the middle of a project for Thrive Housing.

Additionally, as lead consultants, we have advised procurement options to other associations considering relocation and refurbishment projects.

If you are in the process of planning a relocation project or refurbishment programme and would like further advice, do get in touch.
01252 712590