There’s a saying in the moving business that “managing an office move will either get you promoted or fired.” Is your business planning a relocation? Make it a successful transition by understanding a few crucial tips. True, moving isn’t most people’s idea of a good time — but, with the right strategy and support, moving your business’s office becomes easier. What should you keep in mind when you’re planning an office relocation? What steps can you take now to help ensure your move goes well?
Here’s a look at the top tips to keep in mind:
1.Plan ahead. The earlier, the better — at least when it comes to moving plans. If you know you’re looking to move in the next year or so, don’t wait to find a commercial mover. Research now to find the best fit for your business. Look for a commercial mover that has experience in the industry, sufficient resources to manage your move, and skilled personnel who can give you confidence throughout the process. By taking the time to find the right mover now, you’ll save yourself last-minute pressure to make one of the most important decisions in the moving process.
2.Expect the unexpected. Whether you’re relocating in a few months or next year, it’s hard to anticipate everything that could go wrong. Avoid the potentially huge costs of damage to your facility or even worse, an on the job injury, by making sure your moving company has insurance. Don’t just ask if they have insurance, but insist on seeing a copy of their “certificate of insurance” and ask you’re your company be named as an “additional insured.” The location to which you’re moving may require insured movers anyway — so you’ll gain peace of mind while meeting a requirement.
3.Set a schedule. Your moving schedule includes moving out of your current location and moving into your new one. If the management at each facility has stipulations, find out about them now. In most cases, you’ll have to move on the weekend, when other businesses in your building aren’t running, however that can increase your cost Planning in advance can save you money and stress.Create a basic timeline of moving stages, so everyone can understand what’s happening when. If there are a lot of different departments involved, you may wish to create a Gantt Chart to show the phases of preparation. Here is a template you can use to plan your project.
4.Communicate to staff. Communicate early and clearly with your employees about your moving plans. It’s important to get buy-in from all department heads and especially your IT department. Give team members a chance to ask questions they may have. They may raise concerns that had not been considered. It’s better to incorporate these considerations in the planning process, instead of finding out the week before the move. This is not only helpful for smooth transitions, but also it may be required by your state that you provide a certain amount of time’s notice. Likewise, as the official move approaches, have regular meetings to explain plans, expectations, etc.
5.Prepare for address changes. Getting a new company address creates a variety of changes. In addition to changing where meetings are held and where mail is sent, for example, a different location means updated business cards, envelopes, stationery, etc. Order moving announcements, set up mail forwarding, plan for new printed materials, and alert vendors/customers about your location change.
6.Plan for packing. If you don’t have in-house personnel to physically pack and organize your move, hire full-service movers that can handle all the details. It may take an untrained employee an hour to pack up their desk, where a professional mover can pack an entire desk in about 10 minutes. If you multiply that time savings by all the employees that are moving, most employers find that the productivity gained from using full-service mover far outweighs the costs. For example: Let’s assume your mover costs about $40 oer hour per man to pack desks. Let’s assume they can pack 6 desks in an hour depending on complexity. That’s $6.67 per desk. Compare that to the average office worker who makes $16 per hour and it usually makes sense to leave it to the professionals. If you don’t want to leave packing to the pros, then plan to give employees an afternoon before the move to pack their desk items and personal possessions. It usually takes three times longer than you might think to pack.
7.Minimize employees on moving day. On your official moving day, avoid having too many employees on hand. Rather, have at least one manager at your current location and one at the new destination. Otherwise, though, let the movers do the work. A great tip is to hire a moving company who also does move management. Move management is an additional service that comes with a complete project plan completed for you by a project manager. That project manager will be onsite to oversee your movers and make sure the job is completed efficiently. The cost of move management is also offset by the productivity gains of staff who would otherwise manage the move such as the Facilities Manager or IT Manager. Since they are not trained to manage logistics their time is usually better used elsewhere. Accordingly, moving projects which are managed by a project manager usually wrap up on time, which saves money.
Whether you’re moving a small office across town or a large corporation out of state, you’ll find the whole process goes more smoothly with careful strategy. To make the most of your upcoming business move, implement the seven suggestions above.