Moving an office is an important part of every business development and you’re not the only one who has had to do it. It’s a hectic but necessary change for your workplace and you should know how to get through it smoothly. So, here is a general guide on how to organise an office move.
Thinking of moving your place of business to a new address;
Are in need of a Fantastic Office Move checklist.
Reasons for an office move
Lower rent. Rent costs can increase with time and at some point, they can become a challenge. This is especially the case if your business is in need of cutting down on some investments. Moving to a place with lower rent can help a lot.
Closer proximity to the target market. Maybe your location is preventing you from reaching your target demographic and your overall profit is suffering. A change of location might be just what you need.
Improved lifestyle for employees. Your business depends on all your employees in order to function properly and achieve success. A location closer to their homes, or other amenities, such as shopping malls and sports centres would make them happy. And happy employees work better.
Business opportunities. At first, you chose this location simply because you didn’t know better. But, with the development of your business practices, you now see a much better place that can assist growth and profit.
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A Fantastic Office Move Checklist
Make a list of requirements.
Sit down with your management team and determine what you require of the new space that you don’t already have here. It could be more space, a new floor for a brand new department, lower rent, or anything else.
Hire a broker.
Once your requirements are obvious, you can make the process easier by hiring a real estate broker to help you in your search. A professional can easily find the type of new property your business needs.
It’s a good idea to inform your employees early. It will be a big change for them, so it’s desirable to show them photographs of the new space and explain the reasons for this move. Let them have a word in an open discussion.
Include the costs for the broker and the actual moving of the supplies and furniture. In the meantime, you should make sure your business operates as usual.
Assign roles to the staff.
Six months before the date of the move, assign roles to everyone in the company. Most people should be accountable for their own chair, desk, computer and personal belongings. You can assign a role to a senior employee to take responsibility for specific items in their department, such as a common table or a plant. The devices that require a technical eye for their installation should be left to the IT department, or a professional office relocation team.
Check your inventory.
Know exactly what kind of items you have in your office building by taking an inventory. It’s a good idea to also evaluate which office supplies are no longer used, so you don’t have to move them as well. You’ll be surprised how many things you might end up disposing of.
Hire a moving company and get insured.
With a professional team of office relocators, you can be sure your move will go smoothly. Most companies offer moving insurance, but make sure you ask just in case. You’ll need to provide a list of your inventory and estimate the worth of the total number of items being moved.
Create a timeline.
If you decide to use professional movers, make sure that they will be available for your chosen date and time of the move. This would depend on their own schedule, as well as the additional services you might have booked from them, such as packing, or storage. Nevertheless, make sure the entire building is informed of your timeline and everyone is prepared for the move.
Make an office floor plan.
Before the move takes place, you should sit down with the department leaders and the moving team, and make a floor plan for the new property. Discuss where every department will be situated and where each computer and table should go. Make sure all department leaders have a clear picture of their new office, as well as that the moving team knows where to place each item.
Let’s start with the most most common item that dominates all the office moves – the desk. Even if you have a home office, you’re most probably working at one.
Take a photo. It’s important to have a photographic inventory of everything you own in your office. This way, it will be easier to know if you’re missing something. Also, having a picture of your desk can help you assemble the parts you’ve disassembled priorly.
Empty the desk. If the desk has a drawer, empty it. Wrap the items individually in stretch wrap. If they’re too small, put them all in a plastic bag. Don’t forget to label the bags if they’re not transparent.
Remove detachable parts. Drawers, keyboard trays and anything that can be detached from the desk should be removed. This is to prevent any damage during transportation. Wrap the parts in stretch wrap or packing paper for protection.
Protect. To ensure your desk doesn’t get scratched or seriously damaged during the move, wrap the piece of furniture in soft blankets. They will ensure that it is sufficiently protected. Secure the blankets with packing tape, so they don’t slip off.
Move. First, clear the way to ensure that the desk can pass through doors and in between other furniture. After that, find someone to help you, as two people need to lift the desk on a dolly. Then, they need to hold the desk in place, while sliding it along. Once the desk is out, two people need to push it into the moving van.
When wrapping the desk with packing tape, make sure the tape doesn’t touch the surface. Otherwise, you will have to spend a whole day removing glue residue from the desk.
How to move a secretary desk
A secretary desk is slightly trickier to prepare for a long move, but not impossible. There are just a few complications you have to take into account when moving office.
Take a photo. Since the secretary desk has more parts, a photo is important for the assembling after the move. Don’t skip this step.
Empty desk. Pack the items you take from the drawers in separate plastic bags and carefully label each one, so you know where they go. Finally, place all plastic bags in a single cardboard box and label it “secretary desk”.
Detach removables. Remove all small, medium and big drawers from their places and wrap them carefully. Do the same with the shelves and trays. Put everything in a box and label it “desk parts”. Finally, close all non-detachable lids, to make the desk as compact as it can get.
Pack. Start with stretch wrap, in order to secure all non-removable parts of the desk, so they don’t randomly open during transportation. Then, wrap the secretary desk with soft blankets and seal with packing tape.
Move. You’ll need two people to lift the desk on a dolly and get it into the moving van.
If you have to move any furniture down a flight of stairs, you will need two people, equipped with working gloves and forearm lifting straps. “Walking” any furniture down the stairs is dangerous and should be done by professionals only.
How to move a file cabinet
Filing cabinets might take you the most time to prepare. If they’re full, they are extremely heavy, so you have to empty them and find a way to organise all your files without them.
Declutter. First, you should go through all your papers and sort them out. Throw away any old and useless documents. The fewer things you have to carry, the better. This step would take most of your time.
Separate important papers. While decluttering, set aside your most important documents – insurance policies, important contracts and such. Add the documents that are most valuable for your company and which you don’t have a digital copy of. Basically, all documents that you mustn’t lose under any circumstances. Keep all of them with you during the move.
Pack the rest into boxes. The rest of your files should go in cardboard boxes. Organise them however you see fit. Don’t forget to label which documents go where.
Wrap the cabinet. Once your cabinet is empty, remove the drawers and pack them into a separate box. After that, wrap the cabinet in a soft blanket and secure with packing tape.
Move. Get two people to move the cabinet to the moving truck. If the cabinet is still too heavy, use a moving dolly. Heavy items should be generally left to be moved by professional movers, so we recommend that you don’t risk hurting yourself in the process.
How to move a computer
And finally, here is how to prepare your most important office item for the big move. Be very careful with this one, as a lot can go wrong.
Back-up your data. Do this as soon as you’re done with your work on the computer for the day. Accidents happen and once the move is over, you may find that the computer’s been damaged during transportation. You can easily buy new equipment, but the data is irreplaceable.
Remove and organise the cables. Take a picture of the cables so it’s easier to put them back in their place after the move. Then, remove all cables and place them in a plastic bag. Put the bag in a box reserved for the peripheral parts.
Prepare the computer box. A cardboard box that is about to contain your desktop computer should be reinforced with packing tape. Additionally, place a sheet of bubble wrap on the bottom to serve as a cushion.
Pack. Wrap the disconnected desktop computer with bubble wrap and secure with packing tape. Then, place the computer inside the box. If you’ve measured everything well, there shouldn’t be any gaps. If there are, fill them up with packing paper or more bubble wrap.
Move. Test the box by shaking it to make sure it’s packed snuggly. The computer tower shouldn’t be shifting inside. If it is, take it out and fill the gaps with more packing paper. Soft cloths would so the same job. When it’s finally packed properly, seal the box and label. Don’t forget to add a sign “Fragile” so everyone would know how to handle it with care.
How to pack a computer monitor
Remove and wrap stand. Pack the stand separately with packing paper and then in bubble wrap. Use the original packaging if you still have it.
Wrap monitor. Wrap the monitor in packing paper and place a large piece of bubble wrap on the screen.
Place in a box. Place the packed monitor back in its original box or in a similar one if you don’t have it. Fill the gaps with more bubble wrap.
Seal. Close the box and shake gently to make sure nothing is shifting inside. Finally, seal securely with packing tape and label with a sign “Fragile”.
How to pack computer periphery
Keyboard. Wrap in bubble wrap along with the cable. Be careful not to press too hard, so you don’t damage the wiring inside.
Mouse. Wrap in bubble wrap along with the cable and secure with packing tape or a strong rubber band.
Microphones and cameras. Wrap in bubble wrap and secure with packing tape or a strong rubber band.
Pack. Use a large labelled box for the computer periphery. Make sure it’s of a suitable size – not too big, but enough for all the items. Fill the gaps with a soft cloth or packing paper and seal the box.
Frequently asked questions about office relocation
When is the best time of the year to relocate a business?
The best answer is the slowest period of your business. Truth is, there’s never a good time for a move of such a scale, but the next best thing is choosing a slow period when you could allow yourself to stop operations for a few days. The most common time for this is the period between Christmas and New Year’s Eve, or sometime in the summer when there are fewer people in the office.
What should I do about the company server?
In short, prioritize the IT department. Moving the company server is the most complicated part of the entire relocation. So, you’ll have to move the IT department gradually and cause the least disturbance to their work. This topic requires its own article, so make sure you check our moving a server blog post!
Should I arrange for a clean up of the old building?
Yes. You’ll have to organise a cleaning crew to go through the empty building, once everyone and everything is out. Similarly, you will also have to arrange for a thorough clean of the new building in advance, so your employees and the moving team can arrive in a clean office and place everything in its respective spot.
Should I send change of address notifications?
Yes. Utilities, such as power suppliers, water suppliers, internet suppliers, and all your business partners, contacts and unions, have no idea that you’re changing your office address. Make sure to announce to all of them the date of your move and your new address.
What about the business cards?
Update the address on all your business cards in advance, both physical and digital. After all this hassle, it’s easy to forget to do something as small as this, however, it can be quite problematic later.
Visit the main website for price rates of our professional office packing services!
Moving an entire office is a difficult endeavour, which requires time, good organisation and it involves the cooperation of all your employees. In order for the move to go smoothly, you need all the help you can get. Luckily, you can always rely on the professional office removals from Fantastic Services.
Visit the main website for price rates of our office removal service!
The first thing on your moving office checklist is the right location – the new office should offer better perks, such as lower rent and proximity to amenities;
The employees of the entire company should participate in the move;
Prioritise the IT department, as this is the most difficult part of the move;
Moving an office without a moving company can be extremely difficult and take a long time, so make sure to hire professional movers.
Moving an entire office is not just a hard day for you, but for your entire team of employees. It’s a lot of work and a big responsibility for the ones in charge. That’s why the Fantastic Services team is always ready to help out.
Did you find our tips on organising your office move helpful? Have you relocated recently, what difficulties have you faced? Why not share your thoughts with us in the comments below?