Perhaps your business needs to move because it is expanding, or because a new location will simply suit its needs better. Whatever the reason, office moves can be tricky; unlike a family home move, business relocations crucially need to be quick and efficient. The more downtime experienced, the more negative impact on all operations. You want yourself, your team, and your customers to get back to business as usual, as fast and as seamlessly as possible. Of course, things can go wrong, but here are the top seven mistakes to avoid when relocating your business headquarters.
1. Not hiring an IT support provider
If you don’t already have a reliable IT company in charge of all your technical needs, it is recommended that you hire specialists in IT relocation before moving. Of all the facets that go into your business, using technical equipment is a top priority, both in terms of hardware and software set-up. Most business operations rely on computers, online services, data storage, etc. The faster you can get these up and running again the better, but you also don’t want any accidents like a data wipe-out, either. An IT team will consult with you before the move to make sure it’s seamless and to back up all data. They will take crucial steps like uninstalling and reinstalling the server, and can also help you communicate with third parties like your internet service provider.
2. Not planning ahead
On the day of the move, it should all go as smoothly as it possibly can, so you’ll want to sort out any kinks and decisions before-hand. You may be hesitant to carve out what seems like extra time to do this step, but it’ll only cost you more time and money later if you don’t. Firstly, appoint someone to oversee the move, especially on moving day, who will keep track of everyone and what they’re contributing. It’s also a great idea to make a checklist to make sure you don’t miss a thing.
3. Moving on a weekday
One of your main moving goals is to disrupt your business and its normal flow as little as possible. What better way to avoid disruptions than to plan the move for a weekend, during which most business operations come to a halt? This is the best way to strategize your downtime. In addition to moving during the weekend, you should plan the exact timing of the move so that it doesn’t happen during rush hour or inclement weather.
4. Failing to clean out previous office space properly
When conducting business, you want things to be as neat, orderly and updated as possible. Relocating creates the perfect opportunity to get rid of unnecessary items in the office as well as upgrade some of them. You really want to create a fresh new start when you move into the new place. Why spend extra time, money and effort to move junk that you should be doing away with anyway? You and your employees will also become more efficient in the new space without that clutter in the way. Make sure your clearing and organizing extends to your digital files as well, deleting unnecessary ones and putting all the information in order.
5. Not leaving enough time for unexpected issues
Waiting until the last minute is never a great idea in any circumstances, but it can have especially negative consequences when moving your business location. Firstly, things are inevitably going to go wrong and unexpected issues will arise which you didn’t prepare for. You want some extra wiggle room for these occurrences. You don’t want to feel so rushed which will cause unnecessary stress and more likelihood of forgetting things. Not allotting enough time may even delay business operations more, and cause failure to meet deadlines and promises. There might also be fines from your landlord if you are not moved out when you say you will be.
6. Forgetting to change your old address
This may seem like a minor detail, but your business address is more than just the indication of where your mail gets sent to. It looks unprofessional to have multiple conflicting addresses registered under your business. There are less obvious but also important consequences, like hurting your search engine optimisation in Google with the failure to update the address. Make sure to change your address everywhere it pops up online, like on social media, email signatures, your website, etc.
7. Risking physical injury
You don’t want the stress of the move having caused an injury to one of your employees, or a volunteer helper, on your hands. The first way to avoid this is to hire a moving company. You may be thinking, “what could be so hard about the move and why can’t we just do it ourselves?” But in reality, certain equipment and furniture are difficult and dangerous to maneuver, especially if stairs are involved. A moving company is trained, experienced, and you won’t be liable if something goes wrong.
However, if you don’t have too much furniture to move, or for whatever reason do plan to do it without extra support, make sure you still do it right. Buy all the necessary tools to assist your team, like a dolly, moving blankets, and other peripherals. Don’t forget to preorder the moving truck, too! Finally, it may seem too obvious, but it’s also too common a mistake: don’t overload boxes and make them too heavy. Organize by weight rather than category, or just use more boxes instead. There are plenty of ways to get free boxes so you don’t have to worry about wasting money on them.
Taking care of your office relocation correctly
Moving your business’ office should be an exciting time, and a chance to wipe the slate clean in a sense. You don’t want to wipe it too clean, however; for example, wiping out your company’s crucial data. That’s why you should hire an IT company to protect it and move all your IT equipment. You should also hire movers for all the large physical items, or at the very least closely monitor any threats to injuring people. Plan the move with strategy, and give everyone enough time not to be stressed. Make sure someone is changing the business’ address, and get rid of everything you don’t need. Following these tips, you are ready to enjoy the move and the fantastic journey ahead for your team.