If you are either outgrowing your existing office space, or you have decided to relocate your business, there are probably a million different things that you are worried about in order to make sure that your new space lives up to expectations. Among many other things, you will inevitably be moving or adding new computer workstations and telephones…It may seem obvious to some, but you may be surprised to find out just how many customers that I have encountered who hadn’t considered that their computers and telephones in new office space would require new internal wiring, until it was much too late to provide that efficiently!
Obviously an afterthought to some, the voice and data cabling of new office space is actually among the first things that needs to be considered when planning the build-out for your company. Right along with the physical layout of the space, the ceilings, HVAC & electrical considerations, the low voltage cabling required to support your voice and/or data network needs to be planned for from an early stage. From a construction standpoint, it is much more efficient to run voice and data cables in the earlier stages of a build-out, after walls have been erected, but before they have been closed in (also while the ceiling is still “open construction”).
As a result, it is advantageous to determine exactly where you will need to locate devices like telephones, computers, printers, registers, credit card machines, speakers, etc. Additionally, the data speed that is required of your computer network will determine the grade of cable that will need to be used. Other variables that will need to be considered include what type of business phone system you will be using (if it is a VoIP phone system, each phone may require a separate data jack), whether any locations require additional jacks for multiple devices or potential future use, and how furniture (cubicles, conference tables) may affect the layout of cables.The bottom line is this: if you are moving your offices to another location, or if you are adding on to your existing space, and it will require changing the build-out of that space, it is important to consider the voice and data cabling infrastructure early on in the process…it is far easier (and cheaper!) to run extra cables in open construction than it is when everything is closed up and you have been up and running three years later!