Business owners across Australia are only now discovering how efficient and inexpensive modular office solutions have become, and that they’re the ideal way to increase the capacity of your facility permanently or temporarily.
Modular construction allows you to add an extra office, break room, shipping station or any other type of space you need. Modular offices, also known as prefabricated offices can be put up a lot faster than it takes to build a traditional office. There are many more reasons as to why businesses are opting for modular building instead of traditional on-site building. If you’re new to this construction method and aren’t fully aware of what the benefits of going for modular construction are, here’s what you need to know.
Quick Construction Times
This is arguably the biggest reason why many businesses are choosing modular office solutions. Most modular offices can be constructed in about a third of the time required to build the same structure the traditional way. The speed at which you can expand your business can help minimise disruption in your normal everyday operations.
In fact, some modular offices and break rooms can even be constructed over a weekend. Of course, this can depend on a variety of factors, such as size and complexity, but you’ll get your structure quicker than you’d expect without a doubt. Even if it takes longer, most of the construction is performed off-site, so you can still continue running your business while the additional structure is being constructed in a controlled off-site environment.
Quick Takedown Times
The fact that you can take down the modular office building as quickly as you set it up has made modular construction a popular choice for many businesses that require flexibility out of their worksite. While the modular office can remain in place for as long as you need it to, you can also take it down if the need arises. You can also move it if necessary. So, if your business is constantly relocating to another location, a modular office building can be moved much easier.
Modular Construction Is Less Expensive
If you’re a business owner, you’re always looking for ways to save some money. Modular offices and structures are one of the easiest, fastest and most importantly – least expensive ways to get some extra space. On average, a modular office can be 15%-40% more affordable than an identical traditionally-built office.
However, modular construction can be more expensive than a traditionally-built office as well. While the initial price tag may be low, there might be some extra costs that can add up. That being said, make sure to check with the company whether costs of transportation to the site are included, as well as crane fees, electrical, plumbing, site costs, etc.
Modular Construction Offers More Flexibility
Since modular buildings are constructed as a series of modules that are delivered and assembled on the site, you can easily expand your space as your needs change over time. If you’re a small business owner whose needs are expanding yearly, you can add more space as you grow.
Modular buildings come in a wide range of sizes, and they can be single- or multi-story to suit your specific needs. So, whether you need extra office spaces, conference or training rooms, break rooms, lab spaces, locker rooms, or extra restrooms, you can add new modules to the existing building without any disruption.
Is Modular Construction the Right Choice for You?
It’s recommended to ask some of the following questions before you decide whether or not modular construction is the right choice for your business:
- Does it meet the time, cost, labour, site and programmatic goals?
- Is it designed in integration with stakeholders for modular manufacture, transport and assembly?
- Is the design developed so that it works for what your business is doing?
- Is detailing performed in collaboration with a general contractor, design team, fabricator and installer?
- Is the site-delivery made in time, loaded and delivered to minimise handling?
- Does the assembly process meet the safety, quality, cost and time parameters?
Some notable differences between modular and traditional construction include:
- Most states will require a third-party agency or a state program to regulate the design, inspection and approval of the structure at the manufacturing facility and on-site inspector for the site work. However, the impact or extent of the inspection can vary from state to state and the associated costs.
- Transportation regulations also vary from state-to-state, so if you’re shipping a modular construction from one state to another, you’ll have to look at the codes, permits and other associated fees. Luckily, most modular construction companies are approved to build nationwide.
- In order to ensure the modules are robust enough for dynamic loads associated with transport, special engineering is oftentimes required. Most modular construction companies have their own in-house engineers.
- The module or panel will feature pick points so that it can be picked by a crane off the truck trailer and set on-site. Wooden modules often use wraparound belt straps. Generally, truck-mounted hydraulic cranes, tower cranes and crawler cranes are used for this task.
Some characteristics of modular construction workers that aren’t found in traditional building teams include:
- Modular construction teams are usually very experienced, as they have gone through the same processes in the same building environment many times over, resulting in more skills and confidence to deliver outstanding results repeatedly. Traditional construction, on the other hand, includes coordinating shipping, setting and stitching that’s different for every project.
- Modular construction teams work together every day, which builds trust in stakeholders. This is especially beneficial for project stakeholders working with a single manufacturer for multiple projects, promoting workflow and repeated processes of roles, decision-making and responsibility.
- Owners who want to maintain predictability and control of project costs, quality and schedule oftentimes go for modular over on-site construction. Additionally, owners who have the capital to invest in modular at the start of a project have a higher chance of seeing through its successful employment, as early project draws and payouts can be required per the contract agreement with the modular manufacturer.