Somerset County Council, Somerset Enterprise Centres: Operational Management

The Project

Managing workspace can be a complex project that needs to consider a multitude of operations to ensure a smooth end-to-end process. The vital combination of providing small businesses with affordable premises and business support solutions, whilst bringing in reinvestment funds wherever possible, requires a careful balance.

TDA Group operates workspace solutions and business support services under our Enterprise South West banner.

Challenges

Somerset County Council own a number of workspace sites across the county, collectively known as Somerset Enterprise Centres. Having managed the properties themselves for a number of years, they were seeking to outsource the management to an external provider.

The procurement of operational management services aimed to improve visibility of the economic strategy to support small businesses within the region, increase occupancy levels and secure an income for reinvestment into initiatives for economic growth.

With plans to introduce a new build flagship site into the portfolio, Somerset County Council were also looking for a provider that could respond rapidly and take an active part in the completion and integration of the new centre.

Combining the existing estate with the new centre, sees 60,566 of lettable space across eight locations.

The Solution

TDA Group provides a complete solution bringing together expertise to provide valuation and estates, property maintenance, facilities management, finance, marketing and operational management services. Our business advice service provides added value to tenants.

Creating a complete database of all units within the centres gives TDA Group a platform from which we proceed with asset valuations, lease reviews, tenant communications, marketing and rent collections.

Results

TDA Group has developed a close working relationship with Somerset County Council, providing consistent improvements to the management of the estate. We are seen as key advisors on enhanced ways of managing the centres, including space optimisation, tenant selection and management and are actively involved in consultation on new centre planning.

Our active marketing, which includes having the complete portfolio on Rightmove, enables a consistent pipeline of prospective tenants. This has lead to occupancy levels increasing from pre-contract levels and consistently exceeds targets set by Somerset County Council.

Aged debt has been significantly reduced from pre-contract levels through processes in place to trigger interventions at appropriate points.

Successful rent collection processes have improved income levels and with effective cost management, Somerset County Council receive annual payments over and above forecasts.

A complete programme of maintenance ensures that all centres are operated to the highest levels of legislative requirements. Our facilities management helpdesk provides rapid and cost efficient reactive maintenance across the dispersed geography.

Our businesses advisory service works with both tenants and the wider business community in Somerset, to work through challenges, support growth and are actively involved with over 50 start-up businesses.

Facilitating networking events and workshops brings together a community across the centres and region.

SectorGovernment
LocationSomerset
Somerset County Council, Somerset Enterprise Centres: Operational Management
Our successful partnership with Somerset County Council over the past 7 years, running the Somerset Enterprise Centres on their behalf, has enabled a series of accomplishments. From supporting a growing number of SME Businesses with affordable accommodation and business support to putting in measures to enhance the community across the network. We very much look forward to our continued relationship through the now 3-year extended period, during which time the network of centres is set to grow into other areas of the county.
—Ges Green, Operations Manager, Enterprise South West