portable offices

5 Steps to Setting up Portable Offices

Did you know that the modular construction market size is estimated to be $143 billion by 2030? Part of that includes the portable office industry.

While it may not seem like the most popular way to go, office trailers, shipping containers, and construction trailers are more and more popular in terms of portable offices! But how do you set these up? What are the steps?


Keep reading to learn how to set up your portable office to make it the most effective it can be!

1. Tour the Portable Offices First

When it comes time for you to set up a portable office, the first thing that you want to do is tour it. While they may all look relatively simple on the outside (and maybe even similar to one another), they may be different on the inside.

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Knowing the layout for your office space will also help you set up the portable office as well. You will be able to figure out where the desks can go, if there are separate rooms or if it is all one larger space if there is room for a coffee and breakfast bar, and so on. You know what you have to work with.

Getting a feel for what the office looks like and what space you have is crucial for knowing how to set it up!

2. Create Windows and Doors

When you look into a portable office, you may choose to go with construction trailers or even a shipping container.

Typically, construction trailers have windows and doors already in them, but if you go with a shipping container, you may need to install windows and doors.

Unless you want all of the privacy in the world, you most likely do not want your office to be a dark place with nowhere to see the outdoor world. With windows, you can add in natural light into the shipping container to make your office space feel lighter and brighter. Hiring someone to do this that has experience with shipping containers is the best way to go about it to make sure it gets done quickly and easily without any hiccups.

When you do hire someone, make sure you discuss the design and what you want with them so you can truly make your office space yours!

The same goes for doors. You should tell the contractors where you want the doors to be for the office. Do you just want one, or do you want two office doors to the container?


3. Scope Out a Place to Put Your Office

When you need job site trailers, the space you have doesn’t already come equipped with an office or a trailer to use for an office (at least generally speaking and most of the time).

That can be both a blessing and a curse – you get to choose where the office goes! This can be exciting because you truly get to decide where your office is on the site, so you can choose something convenient and easy that works for you.

However, this can also be difficult to do. You need to make sure that the spot where you choose to put the portable office is flat and level. If it is not, you may notice that your office space doesn’t feel even, which can get quite annoying.

You also want the ground to be dry where you put the office. If that’s not possible, you’ll want to add concrete blocks or another form of material that will keep the portable office off of the ground so that it doesn’t corrode or become unlevel over time.

4. Consider Your Extra Office Needs

When you choose to go with a portable office, your office is not an official building. Because of this, it is not going to come equipped with everything that a normal building would – like the luxuries of heat, air conditioning, bathrooms, etc.

You will need to take it upon yourself to consider what you need to add to your space. Are you putting the portable office setup somewhere where it gets hot most of the year? You may want to consider adding an AC unit into one of the windows (or maybe you should add a couple!).

In terms of the bathroom, you may want to get a plumbing service to install plumbing directly into the office for you. Or, if you want to go the easier route, you could just get a separate bathroom like a porta potty.

5. Set Up the Space

The last step in the process of setting up a portable office is actually setting it up!

You get to choose how you want to layout the office, what goes in the office, and more!

Here are a few things you could consider:

  • Add dividers between desks to give an added look and feel of privacy
  • Create a kitchenette area with coffee and snacks for your employees
  • Make sure there is a separate area or room for storage needs
  • Decorate to make the space feel inviting
  • Get the work essentials

Portable Offices and Their Setup

Setting up portable offices may seem daunting at first, but it doesn’t have to be that way! With these steps, you know every step you have to take to go from having nothing to having an office that works for your needs.


If you are in the market for a portable office, you should check out the inventory we have at U.S. Construction Trailers.

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