If you are a seasoned mover that has moved homes more times than you can count, you may think relocating your office will be easy. While it is true that an office move presents many of the same tasks as a home move, it is important to note that it also comes with a few extra layers of challenges. Suddenly you have employees to take into account, extra-large furniture, and sensitive equipment. Then, of course, there is finding a way to tackle all the moving tasks without interfering with productivity.
The bottom line is moving is not easy. However, thinking well ahead and laying out a plan of action can make it far less of a challenge. Whether you are months away from your commercial move or right on the brink, here is what you need to consider.
Break the News ASAP
Your employees are the lifeblood of your company and even the best office location won’t replace a good team. You need to make them part of the process by keeping them informed, getting their input, and overall, letting them know that they are a priority.
Ideally, before you pick a new office location, you should gather your team to discuss the move. You may not have all the answers—and that’s okay—but be honest with them as to why the move is happening. They are naturally going to want to know what this move means for both the company and their jobs, so fill them in on any details you can.
Get Your Team’s Opinion
Once the news is out, get your employees to weigh in. An open discussion, a quick survey, or a combination of the two can be effective in getting opinions and pertinent information. Questions to ask may include:
- What would make their job easier in the office?
- What do they think would improve their workplace in general?
- How could this transition be made easier for them?
- Also, don’t forget to inquire about how everyone commutes. You want to ensure that your new office location not only accommodates parking for drivers but that it’s easily accessible for public transportation users as well.
Plan Business as Usual
How shouldn’t your employees be involved with the office move? By taking on moving tasks that are unrelated to their jobs.
We know that a move adds a lot to your to-do list and we certainly aren’t saying you need to tackle it alone—that’s what professionals are for—but if you want to safeguard productivity and your employees’ mental health during the transition, try not to delegate moving tasks to them. Ideally, the only thing that should be expected of your employees in regards to the move is packing their personal belongings.
You want your employees to carry on with business as usual, but don’t forget about yourself. You surely have a full schedule and adding an office moving checklist on top of it can be majorly stressful. Luckily, hiring the right professionals can make your role in the move much smaller—and the move in general much easier.
Professional Movers: A good moving company can be absolutely invaluable. They have the expertise and equipment to make sure your move goes off without a hitch. Plus, hiring professional movers takes the risk of move-related injuries out of the equation.
Office Move Manager: If you find yourself bogged down by tasks like locating boxes, scheduling installs, and updating employees, consider an office move manager. Their job is to take care of all move-related tasks from researching locations to supervising move-in day and everything in between.
Professional Organizer: Want your new office to look great and be as efficient as possible? A professional organizer can not only help declutter, but take on environment space planning, offer storage solutions, and even update your filing system by migrating your business to the cloud.
Plan External Communications
With the chaos of a move, it can be easy for the smaller tasks to slip your mind, so don’t forget to send an email to clients and let them know that you’re moving. Beyond that, you will also want to change your address on:
- Business cards
- Marketing material
- Your website
- Social media pages
Prioritize Tech Setup
Not having your cables, wiring, and computers set up correctly from the get-go means you risk lost productivity and employee frustration—not exactly how you want to start your time in the new office. Luckily, this can usually be avoided by planning your tech setup well in advance. Here are some tips:
The Layout: Don’t wait until move-in day to figure out how everything will fit. Once you have the measurements and layout for your new office, map out where everything will go. This will help you visualize the new space. And if you label your equipment, this map can also speed up unpacking and install.
The Service Providers: You are going to want to call all your service and utility providers to make sure that they are up and running in the new office before your employees arrive. After all, no one wants to attempt to work while last-minute installs are being done.
The IT Department: And finally, get your IT department moved in before everyone else. This will give them time to set up, learn the layout, and get acquainted with any new equipment. This means that when people inevitably need IT help those first few days at the new office, your IT support can give their undivided attention.
Whether you are moving your business to a new town or a few blocks down, following our tips will help make your move easier and more efficient. Even with the best planning, you may still experience unexpected challenges, but there is no need to panic. Take a deep breath and take them as they come. Before you know it, the moving process will be over, and you’ll be settled into your new office in no time!