Mapping Out Your Operating Steps

Before you can determine what you will need from your business facility, you'll need to take a hard look at your business. What are the essential operating steps that you must do to bring your product or service to your customers? In what logical order should these steps be done? How many employees will you need? Will they be using specialized machinery? In thinking about this, don't forget about functions (such as marketing, billing, collection, payroll, and facility maintenance and security) that are necessary to support the essential steps. Once you have identified the essential business steps, you will want to think about how these steps (and related administrative functions) will translate into facility needs.

The process of mapping out your business's operating steps is designed to get you thinking about your facility needs. However, by itself, this process may not be enough. This is because when a business owner contemplates the operating steps of the business, he or she may concentrate too much on the physical structure of the business facility. However, in order to identify all of the business's needs relating to a facility, the business owner must also think about things beyond the structure, layout, and size of the facility. An example of such non-structural needs would be the selection of a location that is likely to bring in customers, without whom none of the essential business steps could be performed.