As stressful as a personal move can be, the decision to move your entire company – whether across the street or across the country – adds a whole new layer of difficulty and apprehension to the experience. Between losing money while your company is in transit to ensuring that computers, furniture and other critical items make the move on time and without damage can be a real nightmare.
Additional problems can arise due to lack of planning or hurrying through the process. With the loss of income due to down time, costs of the move and problems with customer access a company can be in dire straits during a well-planned move. When problems crop up, they can derail the entire process and make it even more costly in time and money.
Detailed pre-planning can mitigate many problems, but for the unfamiliar, the process can be intimidating. When it comes to planning your relocation, the following advice can minimize problems while maximizing speed and efficiency.
Hire a company or individual to spearhead the relocation
Unless your company is in the moving business, there won’t be a lot of familiarity or experience with moving an entire business. Hiring a company or individual with that experience can make the entire process go much more smoothly. Outsourcing all the little details and planning can make a difficult move much easier for your company.
If outsourcing the position is not an option, designate someone to be the move manager. Make sure they are well equipped with everything necessary – including the authority – to plan and carry out the move. Having one person responsible and focused on just the move will make it easier for everyone involved to know when, where and how the tasks need to be carried out.
Plan the move
Flying on a wing and a prayer is a recipe for disaster in a corporate move. Every step should be planned and the details established before the first box is filled with office plants. Your move manager should have full access to all the planning and needs to be able to carry it out efficiently.
Nothing is too small to plan and the more detailed the plan, the easier it will be to carry out. If everyone knows their part it will minimize confusion and problems. Having everything run through one manager also makes it easy to find answers to questions and gives your employees a focal point for resolving issues.
Take your time, but take it quickly
From the moment the moving trucks arrive to when your business is up and running in its new location is time that you are not making money. Your people are not focused on their jobs but on the move, production is at a standstill and management is concerned about completing the relocation. Keeping that time to a minimum is best for your bottom line, but hurrying can lead to problems.
Misplaced or mislabeled files, not having servers up and running prior to bringing your network online, unfamiliar offices and other factors are more likely the result of rushing than of taking your time and doing the job correctly the first time. That isn’t to say that speed isn’t important, but it takes a back seat to accuracy and efficiency. Getting done quickly and correctly should be the goal.
Offsite storage solutions can simplify moving
If your company has the advantage of knowing in advance of the move, you can make it easier and more efficient to use offsite storage to hold older and less used files and equipment while your company adjusts to its new spaces. In addition to using offsite storage for secondary equipment, it can also be used as a staging area as you allocate and utilize your new business space.
Many moving companies offer offsite storage during and after a business or personal move, having a staging area once you have vacated your old space might make the integration of your new space easier. After the most important parts of your business have been installed and are running, you can bring in the rest of the business at a more relaxed pace.
Be honest with yourself and customers about how long your move will take
Murphy’s Law will quickly kick in once you have begun your move, if you have budgeted time for slowdowns, accidents or problems you will be able to cope with the stress much easier. No matter how efficient a company is, uprooting it and moving the whole business will take time. Possibly a lot more time than you had budgeted or planned on.
Letting your customers – and potential customers – know the reason behind slowdowns and delays will put them on your side and minimize hurt feelings and lost contracts. No one likes to feel they are out of the loop and a simple email to your customers, jobbers and suppliers will keep them from feeling that you are keeping them in the dark.
The bottom line is that you need to keep control of your move. Hiring an affordable home and office removal company, budgeting your time wisely, detailed planning of the move and all other pieces of advice boil down to making sure you don’t lose control of the move and make the situation worse for you and your customers. Moving your business can be a stressful situation but managing it correctly will keep it smooth and efficient.