Moving your office typically means your company is growing and your current office is too small to fit everything and everyone. At first, moving to a new office will find you pretty excited and ready to take on all the chores by yourself, if necessary. After a while, if you don’t have a good plan, you might end up feeling overwhelmed and ready to give up. You need to ensure that all employees, as well as clients and vendors, have been informed, you need to set and meet a deadline for the moving process, as well as keep the business running for the entire time. To avoid running into issues that can delay the moving process, you need to start planning way ahead.
Develop and stick to a schedule
The first thing you need to do, is to start putting together a moving schedule that is as realistic as possible. Although you may want the new office to be ready in one week, this may not be entirely achievable. Take into consideration that, no matter how good you plan everything, you may encounter difficulties that may make you miss the deadline. Equipment shipment may be delayed, contractors may not finish the job on time, anything can happen. If your plan says the entire moving should be ready in 3 months, leave out 2-3 weeks for unplanned situations. It’s always better to be done before the deadline, than having to postpone the moving after you have made the big announcement.
Talk to employees
After every detail is planned, it’s time to let everyone know about the big move. The way you choose to make the announcement, whether it’s a detailed email or a full presentation in front of all your employees, it’s entirely up to you. What you should not miss, however, is the information you need to send out. The email or presentation should
include the following things:
Address and name of the new office
Final moving date
Key benefits of the new office
Reasons that led to this decision
What you expect employees to do, to help out with the process (pack their things, clean their office, etc.
After the big announcement, expect some of the employees to come to you with more questions. Let them know you are open to discuss with them and encourage feedback. This is a chance for them to come forward and express if they have any needs or requests that can be included in the new office, such as equipment changes, layout recommendations or other preferences.
Put together a new office layout
After receiving and filtering all requests, decide what can and can not be taken into consideration for the new office layout. Based on the size of the new location, you can go ahead and start planning the new office layout. Is everyone going to get private offices, or are you going to set up an open-space office?
This is your chance to change the dynamic of the team and ensure that everyone is happy with their new office. If you have received complaints about some of the people not getting along, maybe this is the time to make some adjustments.
Make sure you know where everything and everyone is going to be placed before the new office is filled with stacks of boxes. You may think that you will figure some things out as soon as you start unpacking. Truth be told, it may be even more overwhelming to start making decisions when you are faced with mountains of cardboard boxes filled with stuff.
Deal with the inventory
This is the perfect moment to start thinking about replacing or completely leaving behind some of the things in your office. Start by making three lists: things you are taking with you, things that are being left behind and things that you need to purchase. Evaluate every object in the office, from furniture to staplers and pencil holders, and decide if they are worth being taken to the new office.
By doing this, you will only pack the necessary items and avoid making the moving process more difficult than it already is. After this, you can start packing everything up and labeling them according to the room they will be placed in. The simplest way is to pack all things up into boxes. To decide on the size and number of boxes, use a volume calculator. This way, you won’t be needing to take several trips to the store to get more boxes or return those who have not been used. Remember that you need to plan smart, to ensure everything goes on according to the schedule.
To make the process as simple as possible, you will need to hire a couple of professionals to help out with the move. Typically, you will need two services that are almost indispensable for any office move:
Moving services: unless you plan on asking your employees to help pack, load, transport and unpack everything, you will need to hire a moving company. Take into consideration the flexibility, prices, and services they provide, as well as reviews from past clients. Ideally, you should choose a company that covers all bases, including moving, transportation, loading, and unloading.
Cleaning services: both the new office and the old one need to be cleaned out, so make sure to ask if any of the buildings will handle this, or you need to hire someone. It’s always better to ask ahead, to avoid having to pay for unnecessary services, or being faced with fees for not cleaning the old office.
Now that everything is installed into the new building, take a look around and see if you missed out on any important detail. If not, you can tell everyone that starting next week, you will be moving into the new office. Try to give employees a few days to pack their stuff and clarify any questions they might have about the location of the new office. Although you want to have every little aspect planned, try to leave room for the employees to bring their contribution to the new place. Ask them to come up with design and decoration ideas and allow them to personalize their office space if the nature of the business allows it.