Moving office is not a simple task, although it is true that it can be an exciting activity, it is also true that it generates stress and uncertainty, especially concerning the real expectations of the employees who make an active life in that place.
To understand this reality, we must make a clear distinction between the typical objects in an office, such as furniture, chairs, desks and computers, and separate them from the organisational processes or the actual work of the office.
In this context, it is very useful to understand how our office works and to take into consideration a number of elements before proceeding with the move, including working hours, workflows, employee expectations, ease of access for suppliers and customers, adjustment period, quality of the new infrastructure, available services, among others.
The office move and its stages
Sometimes, moving office can be a more complex process than moving to a new home, and this is basically due to the fact that multiple interests converge in an office, both individual and collective, represented by employees, owners, suppliers and clients, as well as the work factor and the organisational processes that are carried out there.
For this reason, we will now mention a series of steps that will allow you to carry out a successful office move:
Planning is a decisive factor when moving office, without it chaos would reign, so it is advisable to start planning activities 6 to 12 months in advance.
At this stage, you should make a list of the things you need to start the move, document them and put them away. It is also important to organise key documentation including contracts, records, audits, etc.
On the other hand, a communication campaign should be created to notify the move; at this point it would be very useful to create an email detailing the aspects of the move, as well as to make an explanatory video where the reasons for the change of location are explained.
During this first phase, it is a good idea to talk to the employees directly, so that we can find out what they think and what their concerns are about the move, and we can also take advantage of the move to change some things that the employees need, such as a new desk, a computer, a more comfortable chair or even a little more privacy.
However, if the office has many employees, personal communication might not be the most efficient way, so you can make use of technology and create online surveys that allow you to know a little more about the opinion of the staff.
Another important step in the planning process is the establishment of a budget, in this sense, it is essential to know the cost related to each of the processes involved in the move, including purchases, supplier dispatches, payment of personnel, hiring companies, transport, payment of services and, in general, all the expenses involved in the move.
Finally, make a record of everything inside your office, including furniture, electronic equipment, stationery, documentation, and of course the number of employees. It is also essential that you talk to supervisors and managers in order to devise a work plan that will allow you to work through this process.
Packaging and preparation
This phase of the move can take a long time, especially if the office is very large, in which case it is advisable to start the process 3 to 6 months in advance. The first thing to do is to find a responsible company to pack, move and supervise the move.
Make sure you look for the best options, search the internet, talk to other people who have moved and find a company that offers the best value for money. Remember that every move involves transportation, trucks, boxes, cleaning equipment and packing material.
Talk to your employees so that they can pack their own belongings according to their daily work dynamics, that is to say, that they pack first what they need the least and so on until they have packed all the objects.
When selecting boxes for the move, bear in mind that there are many options available on the market, which vary depending on the size, type and use of the objects to be packed. In this sense, we can find cardboard boxes, stackable boxes, plastic boxes, wooden boxes, among others.
Check some details with the removal company, such as flexibility, working hours, rates and services included, such as cleaning. At this point it is very important to talk to the administrator of the new building to reach an agreement that guarantees the success of the whole process.
Take advantage of the move to get rid of old items and unused furniture, you can sell them, donate them or throw them away if they are no longer useful. It is also important to hold regular meetings with employees to check the status of the move.
Before moving, remember to label all the boxes, clearly identifying their contents, and at this stage it is also essential to make a list containing all the information regarding the number of boxes and their contents.
Talk to your employees and notify them that the day has arrived, it is important that they know where they should be, what their function will be in the move, what roles they should play, among other aspects.
Make sure that all utilities, such as water, electricity, telephone, cable and gas, are available in the new building, this way you will not have any inconveniences at the time of your arrival.
Finally, finish packing any last minute items, even if the packing process has already been completed, there are always some things left to pick up. Finally, remember to identify and keep on hand the most necessary items.