Home » Business » Management

Ensure Your Office Move Is Smooth

Nov 14, 2007
Time is money, so when you are moving office the trick is to make sure that you stay operational for as long as possible. In order to do this it is important to make sure that you plan and organise your office move well in advance and take all necessary steps to ensure that all potential stumbling blocks are overcome quickly and without fuss.

Here are some key steps to help you make sure that your office move goes smoothly;

PLAN

The first step in any office move is to plan well in advance, 5+ months is usually a good sort of timescale for a medium sized office. This will give you time to find your new location. Once your location is decided you will have to plan the layout in order to get the most out of the space. This time can also be useful for communicating with the landlord about potential operational issues. It is important to get tenancy issues resolved before any other major steps are made. By planning in advance you can also take time to put together an accurate budget and costing for the move. This will help to make sure that the costs do not spiral out of control, though, having said this, it is important to keep in mind that there will undoubtedly be unexpected issues and expenses to contend with. It's always worth including a margin for these.

Moving offices is not only an opportunity for upgrading your premises, you can also take this opportunity to upgrade your IT equipment or replace ageing office furniture. For example, if you still use CRT monitors it may be worthwhile replacing these with TFT screens, you will not only reap the benefits of better equipment, but you can also save space and weight when you move. The benefits of getting new furniture is also two fold, you get shiny new furniture and you can also get furniture that better suits the layout of your new office.

It is not just hardware and furniture that you have to move, you must also make sure that you sort out insurance for your new building and make arrangements for operational necessities such as security, maintenance, waste and cleaning contractors etc, though larger office buildings may come with these services already.

COMMUNICATE

Once the planning for your move is completed it is absolutely crucial that you communicate the agenda to everyone and that they understand what is going on and what is required of them. If you are planning on updating the IT systems in the move, your IT staff will need to be informed so that they make the arrangements for the new hardware/software etc. Bear in mind that the IT staff will also be required to be involved in the early planning of the move anyway as the installation of IT networks at your new location will be one of the most time consuming aspects of the move itself.

You will need work out exactly how much furniture, equipment and filing will need to be relocated so that you can arrange an office removal company. Compiling an accurate inventory of exactly what is being moved and what is being disposed will help the removal company provide the right service.

Tell your general staff what is going on and when it is happening. It is crucial that your staff know when you are moving and how it is going to affect them. Sometimes it may be a simple case of letting them know that as of X day they will simply turn up at a different location, however, it may be prudent for staff to spend a day or so clearing out redundant files and the like.

Clients/Customers are essential to any business so it is important that you broadcast details such as time, location and possible downtime to any clients or customers. Advertise your new address up to a month in advance and make sure that details on your Website are up to date.

PREPARE

Once you have planned and communicated the details of the move you will be able to start preparing. This entails having your IT staff spend time at the new premises preparing IT systems and having staff ready their workstations by removing unnecessary files, though you must make sure that there is still sufficient staff to deal with day to day business. You must make sure that staff know exactly where the new premises is and how to get there. About a week before your move you should be providing staff with new keys or cards.

If you are introducing new hardware/software or operating procedures as part of the move, it is imperative that you provide the relevant training courses at least a month or so before the move as well as some refresher courses afterwards.

Make sure that there are adequate waste removal facilities at your old location to deal with equipment, furniture and files that you are not taking. It may be worthwhile getting in touch with a local waste contractor to deal with this. Take extra care to make sure that IT equipment is disposed of properly, under new regulations all waste electrical equipment must be dealt with by registered contractors, failure to do so could cost your company money.

MOVE

The final step is to actually move. Your inventory and space plan should combine neatly to show what goes where. Make sure that the new building in signed properly as people will be unfamiliar with it. When leaving your old premises you should make sure that it is left in a tidy state and that nothing has been left behind. It is also prudent to leave behind a forwarding address for any mail still being delivered to the old address.

Inevitably there will be something that goes wrong on the day of the move, this is why you should always incorporate some leeway in your timescales, this includes time for delivery of your equipment (new or old), downtime, installation etc.

You will find that once everyone is moved in there will be a few teething problems, having a few extra staff on hand will be helpful in order to keep downtime to a minimum.
About the Author
Danny Bee works on The Office Movers, a UK site where companies can request quotes from up to 4 leading office removal firms just by filling in one form. Visit The Office Movers for details.
Rating:
Please Rate:
(Average: Not rated)
Views: 206
Print Email Report Share
Article Categories