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Becoming Succession Ready: Plant and Equipment

When contemplating your practice succession, it is essential to consider your office plant and equipment. There are various issues to consider, such as the presentation of your office and how this reflects on your professional image, the age of the equipment used in your office and any finance arrangements you may have in place.

Download our schedule below for a detailed checklist of office equipment. Use this list to inventory your office plant and equipment thoroughly.

Becoming Succession Ready - Office Plant and Equipment Schedule
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The first matter to consider within your office is whether your office equipment reflects the professional image of your practice. Do you need to upgrade or replace any items? Remember, you only get one chance at a first impression with a prospective buyer. It might seem trivial, but everything matters if you wish to maximise your success during your succession journey.

You may want to replace or upgrade your office equipment for several reasons, including:

  • Age: Office equipment has a lifespan; it may become less reliable and inefficient as it ages. If your office equipment is over five years old, consider replacing it.

  • Obsolete technology: As technology advances, older equipment may become outdated and unable to handle the latest software or perform the functions the business needs.

  • Energy efficiency: Some office equipment, like printers and copiers, consume a lot of energy, and upgrading to newer models can be a way to reduce energy costs.

  • Security: As computer technology evolves, older equipment may be unable to accommodate the latest security features and updates, which can be a real issue in protecting your business from cybercrime. Older systems may be using outdated software and operating systems that are no longer supported by their manufacturers and, thus, no longer receive security updates. This can make it difficult to protect the system from known vulnerabilities. Additionally, the older hardware can be slower and less efficient, slowing the time to detect and respond to an intrusion. Remember, you are only as secure as your weakest link.

  • Productivity: Newer equipment can be faster and more efficient, increasing productivity and improving office workflow.

  • Professional image: If your equipment is old and dated, it may be time to refresh your office layout and furnishings to ensure you are presenting your professional brand to staff, clients, and your future successor.

Many practices will finance some items in their office. This might include computers & laptops, printers and copiers, phone systems, audio/visual equipment, servers, office furniture, security systems or motor vehicles. As your finance arrangements come up for renewal, consider the timing of your arrangements. Will you be looking for your successor to take over your finance arrangement, assuming the item in question will continue to be required in the business, or will you be willing to pay out the lease or other finance arrangement if needed? Ideally, your finance arrangements might finish on 30/6 (and your successor takes over on 1/7, which is a typical transaction date). In this scenario, your successor can determine if they wish to continue with your finance arrangement in their own right or an alternative arrangement.

Now is the time to review your plant and equipment as you prepare for your practice succession.



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