In the world of business, changing the location of an office is a fairly common thing. If done right, moving the office can help a company kick-start its operations, expand to new territory, and boost the employees’ productivity and motivation. The keyword being “if.” The process of moving requires a lot of planning and careful preparations. If those conditions aren’t met, the entire business can be brought to a halt for an indefinite period of time. Let us take a look at this short checklist that should help you to avoid this pitfall.
Initial Moves (4-6 Months Prior to Moving)
Moving is not something you can accomplish on-the-go. The foundations have to be laid at least 4-6 months ahead. Here are some of the moves that should make that foundation as solid as possible.
- Determine a budget – The budget will guide virtually all of your later decisions. Don’t forget to count in the costs of insurance, utilities, cleaning services and some other, less obvious expenses.
- Make a short list of requirements the new office has to meet – We are talking about the square footage, location, floor plan and other, similar things.
- Hire a real estate broker – Now that you have a clear picture what you expect from your new office, and know how much money you have at your disposal, presenting your case to a real estate broker, and, eventually, finding a new site will be much easier job.
- Acquire necessary permits – Paperwork knows to be quite tedious. The sooner you address this issue, the better.
- Set up the foothold – Even when all things fall apart, your customer service and IT department must keep going. That is why as soon as you find a new site for your business, you should take care of utilities, new phone number and internet access.
Preparations for Moving (1-3 Months Prior to Moving)
Now that you’ve found a moving location and laid the necessary groundwork, it is time to actually put things in motion.
- Hire a professional moving company – Moving companies sometimes tend to have a very tight schedule. Early booking means an access to better service, so start looking for contractors as soon as possible.
- Hire a cleaning company – The chances are that your new office will need a lot of cleaning. Fortunately, for example, finding a reliable company dealing with rubbish removal in Sydney, Melbourne, or any other larger city is not that hard. As long as you make early booking, of course.
- Assess the existing equipment and furniture – New space will probably require new acquisitions. But, see if there are any things you can make use of, before you spend any money.
- Start advertising your new location – By the time you move to the new location, your customer base should be well aware of the transition.
- Make sure someone’s there – Ideally, as soon as you publish your new phone number, someone should be there to pick up the headphone.
- Do the moving in several stages – If you first move the staff and the equipment necessary for your operations, you won’t stay idle for long.
- Set a very specific moving schedule – Setting up a specific time frame for every single activity will make sure that everyone involved complies to their obligations.
- Delegate the most reliable employees to guide the contractors – Trying to be everywhere at once will spread you too thin.
- Go through all the procedures with employees – This way, you will minimize the chances of something going wrong.
- Put all the meetings on hold – Meeting important clients while moving can never leave a good impression. Postpone all the meetings until your new office is fully operational.
These few tips should help you cover some of the most dangerous pitfalls associated with moving into a new office. Of course, you will have to learn some things on-the-go, but, at least, you will address all the major issues.