Portable Structures vs Mobile Office Containers on Construction Sites

Portable structures and mobile office containers are familiar fixtures on construction sites, but which is better?

Construction sites are always full of activity, with personnel and equipment moving back and forth.

In this article, we’ll compare portable structures vs mobile office containers on construction sites, what they are, what they do, and which work better.

Portable Structures vs Mobile Office Containers on Construction Sites


What is a portable structure?

A portable structure is a building that can be moved from one location to another.

Portable structures can be modular or can be fabric structures.

What is a mobile officer container?

Southwest Mobile Storage office

A mobile office container is prefabricated office, temporary storage space, or even a combination of the two. MOs can also be moved from location to location.

Portable structures and MOs actually have a lot in common:

  • Both are moveable
  • Both can be customized
  • Both can be used for a variety of uses

On construction sites, these types of structures and containers can be used for mobile offices, storage areas, and more.

For example, portable structures can be used for community lunch areas, allowing for workers to eat with each other.

MOs are great for temporary workspaces or satellite offices.

But Which is Better?


Now that you know what portable structures and mobile officer containers are and you know what they can be used for, which is business for your construction business?

Let’s look at both of these in more detail.

Portable structures can be used for office environments, events areas, and eating areas. As mentioned above, these structures can be used for large seating, like a lunch room.

Portable Structure Construction Area

Mobile office containers (MOs) can also be used for office environments, with the availability to customize those environments.

MOs have long been used on construction sites, especially for storing equipment.

Construction MOs can be used for management offices, giving foremen or project managers the space to conduct any business.

Shipping containers have become a staple in these types of buildings because of their durability and strength.

Because they’re built to withstand heavy weather conditions, shipping container MOs are great to use in areas that might be affected by harsh weather and storms.

Container MOs can also be customized to match a construction office’s on-site offices. Besides adding shelving, electrical components, or desks, you can add other items like:

  • Doors
  • Windows
  • Security locks
  • HVAC systems

Depending on your building project, you can even purchase a container MO for a satellite office or temporary workspace.

This is a great way to continue working, especially if a project will take months or a year to complete. Combination offices, that include a storage area, are also available.

So which is the better option – portable structures vs mobile office containers on construction sites?

While it depends on the project, mobile office containers, especially those made with ISO shipping containers, are the best option.

MOs can come in different sizes, from the standard 20-foot container up to 40-foot containers. Sizes can also be customized, so you get the exact size you need for your site.

MOs are also easier to move versus that of portable structures, making them ideal for moving between construction sites.

Mobile Office Containers from Southwest Mobile Storage

At Southwest Mobile Storage, we offer all manner of containers to fit both commercial and residential projects.

There’s also the added security with using mobile office containers.

Options for security door or window locks prevent theft of items or equipment. While you can get security locks with portable structures, they are smaller in variety.

In this article, we looked at portable structures vs mobile office containers on construction sites.

While portable structures may work for large gatherings, we believe MOs are better suited for a familiar office environment.

If your construction site is looking for mobile offices, give our office a call at 800.686.9114.

Our shipping container experts can help you decide if a mobile office container works for you, as well as advising different set up options. Call us today or fill out the form below.


  • Product and services

  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY


  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY


  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY