Just like every other major project, proper planning and organization are the keys to a successful office move. Knowing how to plan an office move is integral to the success of the office relocation itself.
Apart from needing an incredibly effective moving company to help you with all of your things, you’re going to have to be very good at planning the intricacies — the very details surrounding your office move. Everything must be kept in order and you have to keep track of all of your things to make sure they don’t fall on the wrong hands.
How to Plan an Office Move Like a Pro
Moving your office to a different location is a process with multiple steps. It requires careful knowledge on how to plan an office move. Evidently, it’s also going to need extreme caution and some preparatory steps. And just like any large project, it would be prudent to divide the workload and delegate specific tasks to different employees.
Starting your office moving plans early and maintaining open and frequent communication is the key to a successful and less stressful office move.
#1 Formulate a timeline
The first step to knowing how to plan an office move is to be organized. Create a timeline that includes all of the essential stages of the move. To ensure that the schedule you’ve created is feasible, discuss the plan with all of your team members involved with the move.
Be realistic with your time expectations, and think closely about how much time you actually need. Small offices may need at least three months for preparation, and a medium or large office may need to plan for 6-8 months or more.
Whatever the case, the one of the integral steps is to start as early as possible.
#2 Designing the new office space
Research creates informed choices and informed decisions. That’s why your next step involves collecting all available information on the new space. Try to get your hands on some blueprints or a floor layout, so you can pinpoint key components (things like electrical outlets and storage space), and set to work designing your new office layout.
Another good idea is to have a general layout plan for your current space, so you can draw up comparisons between the two.
What if you’ve got areas in your current office that aren’t working? It’s best to identify them now, so that the same problems can be avoided completely in your new space.
List down some potential problems with the new space. Maybe it has a smaller reception area, less storage capacity, or perhaps an even larger space that will need temporary walls or more cubicles. You might need to think of hiring the right people to put it all together for you.
#3 Put together a moving team
If you’re operating in a medium to large office, appoint someone from each department or division to coordinate together in their particular area. You can easily assign this to a department supervisor or manager, so they can ensure that each employee takes responsibility for packing their important files, their desks, and other personal items.
For smaller offices, I’m afraid you’re on your own. If you are, it’s good to identify key people who can help you with coordinating your move. Your team might also be able to assist you with identifying current issues with the old space while finding possible solutions when you’re in the new office.
This is a good way to incorporate other viewpoints and to achieve consensus on the move, especially if you note that some employees aren’t supportive of this new change.
#4 Hold regular meetings
Set up regular meetings in addition to your daily schedules. Planning an office move is a huge change that everyone has to deal with. It’s important to discuss the move and its progress with all of your employees.
Everyone must be kept in the loop…
Make time to address important employee concerns and hear out their comments. Moving is stressful for everyone involved, not just you. And it can even be more stressful if decisions aren’t being adequately communicated.
#5 Figure out a budget and delegate tasks
Get your budget fixed. Determine your budget and identify important costs even before you hire your first movers, or before you pack your first box. And when you find the right moving team, list some tasks that need to be completed during the weeks before you move.
Make sure that all of the critical tasks are added to the timeline or schedule. If you’re a medium-sized business, ask each department manager or supervisor what they need in their area.
It may include specialty service providers, like computer network specialists or electricians.
#6 Hire the right movers
Hiring movers for office relocation is critical, and you need it for smoother transitions. Much like a household move, it’s important to make sure the company is reliable and that you’re receiving the best service for the cost.
So make sure you do your research, ask the correct questions, and encourage the company to visit your office to assess your move. This specific task can be appointed to one person or a group. Each group can call specific companies and then compare notes.
#7 Create a contact list
Communication is key…
Contact lists help ensure that everyone involved with the office move (including clients and suppliers) know that you’re moving and know what you’re doing. It’s also a great idea to assign this task to one person to oversee and prevent key contact people from falling through the cracks.
Another group of people that you should be notifying about your office move is your customers and clients. Updating your contact information (especially the office address) on the internet is important to ensure your clients don’t go elsewhere to find your services.