Moving your business from building to building can be just as, if not more, tiring than moving houses.
There are plenty of electronics to move around, along with the usual office desks. Not only that, if your old office building had security-based technology like access control systems, you will also have to reimplement them.
Basically, you will have to do a lot of things from scratch.
To further complicate things, you also have a deadline. When you’re moving houses, you can take your time and temporarily stay somewhere else. A smaller house can work for your family in the meantime.
That’s not usually the case for offices. You have to get it done as quickly as possible because every day spent moving results in losses to the company.
Fortunately, there are some ways to make the whole process easier and more efficient.
1. You should plan ahead
A successful office migration requires a lot of proactive advance planning. It’s not something you can “wing” and worry about on the spot.
Months before the actual moving date, you should already plan who does what tasks and assign staff to serve as backups.
The planning process itself can take months, and you should allocate a few more months for the actual packing process.
You’ll also have to approve a unique budget for this, which might take a while depending on your office’s bureaucratic setup.
The last thing you want to happen is to have the moving company at your doorstep while you’re still busy packing boxes and double-checking that everything is packed.
2. Appoint a dedicated person in charge of the moving process
Even when moving office premises, the best practice would be to get one staff member to take the lead. Company leaders already have plenty of things to worry about, so it’s best to have only one person facilitating the process.
It is more efficient to only have to run the planning through one person, instead of having multiple conversations with everyone involved in the moving process when there are questions.
3. Find out the best moving company for your budget
There are plenty of moving companies out there, with different services and reviews to their name. Once you’ve appointed the necessary people and outlined the critical tasks, take a while to review the different moving companies.
Try to get quotes from at least three companies, so you can compare which one can give you the most bang for your buck. Remember, an office move costs way more than a house move, so you’ll want to minimize costs as much as possible without sacrificing efficiency.
The best scenario would be to get a full-service moving company. This means that they will also be in charge of packing, loading, unloading, and unpacking. This will cost a bit more than just getting a company to do the moving, but it will save you so much stress.
It’s also best to have someone from the company come over and look at the premises. This way, you can get a more accurate quote than if you just gave estimations through online messaging.
As with all professional services, make sure to verify that the company you’ll be hiring is licensed and insured. The last thing you want to do is have some of the equipment break with no immediate financial recourse from an insurance company.
4. Consult with your IT Department
Moving computer hardware and software is not as simple as moving office chairs. There are plenty of wired and wireless connections that need to be considered, and this is best done in consultation with your office’s IT department.
You can’t expect the movers to know all about your company’s technology. Before you move, you will have to disconnect your tech and reconnect them once they’re on the new premises.
We’re not just talking about computers here. We’re also talking about your phone lines, data servers (if any), and even your internet plans. This is a whole task by itself, so you’ll really have to schedule a sit down with the people in charge of your IT.
Technological equipment also contains valuable material, so if you eventually decide to dispose of them and just buy new ones, you might want to consider recycling or donating your old equipment.
5. Know your building’s rules for moving out
Most offices don’t own the building in which they office. Instead, they rent out a space from a property manager. If you are only renting your office space, you should ask the building management for rules on moving out.
Maybe they have certain restrictions on packing as it can only be done on non-working days to minimize disruption for other tenants. You’ll also want to use the service elevator if they have one, which may require special permission.
The sooner you get this out of the way, the less you have to worry about when the day comes to actually move out.
6. Start ordering business cards, envelopes, and letterhead with your new address
Before you move out, you should already place orders for letterhead and document templates with your new address. When you finally get settled into your new building, you’ll want to start using documents that already contain your new address.
This will make the transition much smoother because you’ll instantly be using your new address. Don’t make things harder for yourself by using your old office address even if you have already moved out.
It would also be good to update your clients, especially your biggest and most frequent ones, about your new office address. That way, you won’t have to worry about essential correspondences being sent to the wrong place.
Moving offices takes a lot of work, so if you want to make the transition smoother and more manageable, you have to put in the work months ahead in advance. It begins with a detailed transition plan, with contingency actions for every unexpected event.
The sooner you start planning and assigning tasks, the more likely you are to move offices without a hitch.