Moving a business is a collaborative process. You may need to set up a moving committee and you will most certainly require the help of a professional mover. There are pieces of a business move that will require input from others within your company or office. It may be helpful to assign certain parts of the move process to members of your committee. Your moving company will have had a lot of experience in moving offices and companies. Lean on them and take advantage of their experience. Let it work for you.
Plan Your Move
The most important thing you will need is a timeline. On your timeline you should have start and end dates for certain stages of your move. The timeline should be a collaborative process with your internal team. Your management should sign off on your timeline to ensure that all the appropriate parties are aware of the critical milestones. As a general rule, small offices should allow 3 months to prepare for a move. Medium offices should allow for 6 months. Large offices should allow for 8 months. The key is to allow as much time as possible.
Know Your New Space
Collect all of the information you can about the new space you are moving to. When possible get a floor layout or blue print for the new space. This will help you identify key areas such as electrical outlets, storage, data ports, etc. The floor layout will also assist you in outlining the new office layout when you get to your new space. Take a layout plan for your current space and use that as a base for defining the layout in the new space. This is the best time to identify what is not working in your current layout and correct those problems through your new design.
Brainstorm Potential Problems
You and your team should try to brainstorm all of the potential problems that you may encounter in the new space. For example, is the waiting room/reception area smaller in the new location than your current location? If so, how will you and your team accomodate that difference? Is there more floor space in the new location? Will you need to establish more cubicles/offices than you currently have? Will this require buying more office furniture? Is there any build out that needs to be done in the new space? Has it been outlined? Are there carpenters or painters that you need to be project managing? Identify these key completion dates on your timeline as well.
Gather Your Team
We recommend that you get a participant from each department/division to be in charge of coordinating their areas. Each employee will need to take responsibility for packing their individual desks (unless your mover will be handling this for you) and securing all of their personal belongings prior to the move. Use your team to brainstorm best use of the new space. Each department should identify what is not working for them now so that the move can solve these problems. White board these issues and incorporate them into your move plan. Your timeline should also have regular meetings scheduled so that all employees are aware. These meetings are a great time to address any questions or concerns. These meetings can help reduce the stress of a move by sharing information with your teams.
Know your budget! Identify what your spending limits are and use these to determine what you can afford and what you can not. Take your budget and identify certain amounts for certain parts of the move. There should be a construction amount (used for any build-out or painting that is being done), an amount identified for any furniture you may need to purchase, an amount for the moving company, etc.