As summer is at an end it's never been a better time to make a…
Office relocation is an exciting time for a business. The new spaces and expansion almost always mean your company is on the up-and-up, so it’s a good bet that you just can’t wait to settle into the new office.
But as exciting as the opportunity is, a poorly managed move can harm your company with effects lasting long after you’ve abandoned the old place. Don’t overlook some of the most important parts of your move.
Here are seven tips on how to keep everything together even when it’s all spread apart.
1. Make a solid plan
Before anything else, you need to plan out this move. Determine what day or days are acceptable for business to be put on hold and use those for your specific moving days. Schedule movers and hold them to some sharp deadlines so you can be back in action as quickly as possible.
2. Trim down the clutter
The first step in any successful move is establishing what you need to bring and what you don’t. If you’re moving offices for more space, that may tempt you to bring everything because now you can afford to store it and more. Don’t fall into that mindset! Clutter and nonessentials develop naturally in a workplace, and the process of moving is an excellent opportunity to trim and pare down the excess.
Tossing old office furniture and unnecessary records are the most obvious targets. Donate or sell off old furniture that’s gone unused, or if it’s not in good enough condition for that, junk it. Without that extra couch or desk, you’ll have less to move. Any outdated documentation can be shredded and junked, too, to save the effort of bringing it to the new office.
3. Order new furniture ahead of time
While you’re clearing out the old, get on top of filling in with the new. Order any new equipment (computers, postage machines, etc.) before you move, so you’ll have it ready to be delivered within a few days of settling into the new place.
If you can time it well enough, have it delivered directly to the new offices, so you can avoid paying for shipping to the old one and then paying for it to be moved to the new one. Shipping can be a danger, however, so don’t rely on anything business essential being delivered strictly on-time; be prepared to do without if things go wrong.
4. Inform your clients
Scheduling is going to be key, and not just for the move itself. If you have a large client base or a very time-sensitive industry, you’ll need to inform all possible clients of your move and with your offices may be slow to respond or otherwise unavailable.
When you pin down the exact moving day (do this months in advance!), make sure it’s well-known that no meetings or deadlines should be scheduled for that day, or even close to it, if it can be helped. Moving an entire office is stressful, and you don’t need to be juggling that with deadlines.
5. Schedule a pre-moving process
If it can be done, consider a pre-moving day or process! Non-essential items can go first, allowing you to do a proper moving day swiftly and seamlessly. Divide up what sort of things are absolutely necessary to run day to day operations on.
If you think it can be done without for up to a week, sort it into pre-moving and have it taken to the new offices a few days before you actually move. This can whittle down the heavy or long items that could take time to move, meaning you can stay in business longer before you move and get back into business quicker after you move.
6. Update your address across all channels
Put in your business’s change of address quickly, and update everything with the new address. Websites, business cards, and letterheads should all read the new address as soon as you’re ready to receive mail there. The change of address could take up to a month to complete at the post office, so it’s best you get the new address out and accessible as quickly as possible. Any listings online you might have (Google Maps, Yelp, etc.) should also be updated, or you may have clients arriving at the old offices because of navigation mix-ups.
7. Require employees to pack individual items
Organization is key and make that clear to all your employees. Have them be responsible for packing up their individual belongings at their desks and labeling the boxes clearly with their names. The top of the box and two sides are usually the best way to ensure it’s visible. Use any filing tricks you may have picked up along the way; color coding or printed labels can help sort what items belong with which specific departments.
. . .
Moving can be messy and turn into a nightmare in seconds. But hopefully with some good planning and this guidance, yours will go off without a hitch and you’ll be back in business overnight.
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