By Daniel Hunter

Almost two thirds of businesses in the capital are considering moving premises, a new OnePoll study for Capital Capture has shown, with lack of space, rising commercial rent and the high cost of buying and servicing property all cited as motivating factors.

Nearly half of those surveyed London-based professionals in the finance, IT, legal and insurance industries, reported a rise in their commercial rent in the last two years.

Of the 63% contemplating a move, over half said the decision was due to property-related costs, 10% have outgrown their current premises and 13% want to amalgamate smaller offices.

Last year, booming international demand for central London offices helped draw £14 billion of investment into the capital’s commercial property market, according to the property consultant CBRE, heralding a return to pre-financial crisis levels of activity.

This latest research from Capital Capture, a leading London-based document capture and outsourcing specialist, showed that the insurance sector in particular has been hardest hit by the significant demand for office space in the capital, with 61% seeing rental increases compared with 45% in the finance sector, 41% of IT businesses and 37% of legal firms.

Despite the document intensive-nature of their industries, only 35% reported having a space-saving digital mailroom or other document capture solution in place. 30% openly admitted to keeping far more paper files and records than they needed to.

Business improvements which could help to improve capacity are, however, becoming growing priorities, the results showed. These include greater access for home working (30%), implementing or upgrading digital mailrooms and other document management capabilities (34%), document sharing across sites (28%) and centralised document storage (23%).

“Technology offers distinct advantages for the many document-intensive businesses in London that are facing relentless increases in operational costs,” says Capital Capture managing director, Mark Kirpalani.

“Specifically, replacing manual processes with business-oriented capture solutions will aid compliance, enable growth without increasing fixed costs, ensure disaster recovery and open up important opportunities such as the chance to increase staff productivity and cleanse historical records.”

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