An office relocation requires a great deal of planning. Not only is there a lot of large furniture, technology equipment, and private records, but there are also a lot of people. Add to that the need to keep downtime to a minimum so as not to disrupt business operations, and you’ve got a lot to think about in your planning.
There’s no getting around it: moving offices is a lot of work. But that doesn’t mean it has to be difficult or time-consuming. You’ll have a smooth transition to your new office space with a little planning and preparation. Follow our top office relocation tips.
Make a Head Start
If you don’t follow any of our other suggestions (but let’s be honest, you’ll be glad you did! ), make this one a priority. Beginning early makes every aspect of your move much easier.
If possible, begin planning your move 4-6 weeks before the big day. This will allow you to see what needs to be done and plan accordingly. It’s always a risk to leave a move until the last minute, but with all of the factors involved in moving an office, it’s especially dangerous.
Set benchmarks for the movement’s flow so you can monitor your progress. Keep an itemized to-do list to ensure you don’t forget anything. Include items that appear insignificant, as these are the most likely to slip your mind once the process begins.
Make a Project Manager Nomination
Find a detail-oriented person to take on the role of Project Manager to assist you with the bits and pieces. Having someone oversee this project is the best way to ensure that nothing is overlooked. It also means you’ll have a single point of contact as departments and third-party vendors become involved.
Depending on the size of your organization, you may also need to involve department heads. These managers should bear some of the responsibility for ensuring that their individual teams complete their departmental tasks. Assure that they understand the importance of sorting through and disposing of items they no longer require, and that their belongings are ready for the big move on moving day.
Hire a Moving Company as soon as possible.
Moving your office requires more resources than moving your home. Special equipment for moving large items, a larger team of movers, and plenty of planning ahead of time to ensure everyone is ready. Hiring a moving company not only ensures that you have the necessary people and equipment, but it also allows you to factor logistics into your moving budget.
Not only that, but hiring a moving company ahead of time allows you to plan outside of business hours. Schedule your movers on nights or weekends to minimize your impact on business operations. Of course, many organizations are thinking along the same lines, so these are highly sought-after moving times. Arrive early.
Involve the IT Department
This is another step you should take as soon as possible. By involving your IT team early in the process, you will have their involvement in the move and will be able to plan ahead. Allow your IT team to evaluate the new space to determine if any equipment or infrastructure upgrades are required.
Your IT department will assist you in scheduling installations for things like internet, phone, cabling, and so on. The US government requires that records and information be kept and transported in a secure manner, and the IT staff will assist you in staying in compliance.
Communicate with Your Workers
While moving an office can be an exciting opportunity for a fresh start, it can also be unsettling for some people. Giving your employees a heads-up on what to expect will be beneficial. You don’t have to tell them everything, but you should share your new location, timeline, and other pertinent information. Allow them time to respond to any questions they may have, and make it clear what, if anything, you require of them.
Order equipment with plenty of time to spare.
Make sure to assess your equipment needs ahead of time to ease the transition and keep your downtime to a minimum. Whether it’s furniture, technology, or office supplies, you’ll need these to ensure that you can pick up right where you left off in your previous location. Place orders for this equipment ahead of time so that delivery can be coordinated at your new address. This will save you from having to move everything twice.
Make an announcement about your address.
This one may appear obvious, but trust us when we say that it does slip through the cracks from time to time. Make an announcement to your customers about your change of address. If nothing else, it’s an excellent opportunity to reach out and inform them that you’re making a move. Order business cards, schedule website updates, and check places like Google My Business, social media accounts, and email newsletter footers for updates to your location.