Relocating your office will be a huge project, but often, it will be a necessary decision. Whether you’re downsizing to a smaller office, or need more space, there can be many benefits to moving, such as saving money and increasing productivity and employee satisfaction.
With so much involved in an office relocation, it can be all too easy for things to go wrong. However, as one of the leading office removal companies in the UK with extensive experience in commercial moves, Britannia Movers has put together this guide so you can avoid the most common office relocation mistakes.
Poor planning can be the downfall of any project and your office relocation is no different. There will be many factors involved when you move your business and all will need to be accommodated for throughout the move.
You should begin planning in good time, making sure all staff are informed with the relevant information. It can be helpful to assign roles early, so people know what they will be responsible for throughout the relocation. You can also start making a detailed inventory list of the furniture and equipment that will need to be moved, and the layout of your new office.
Britannia will begin your office relocation with a meeting and a site visit to map out exactly what will be required to successfully move your business. We’ll be able to plan for the necessary resources and equipment, as well as work to your schedule so we can keep business downtime to a minimum. We can assign you an experienced project manager to oversee the entire relocation and help to plan efficiently.
Often companies don’t leave enough time to properly plan and carry out their office relocation. Not leaving enough time and setting unrealistic deadlines can result in a rushed move, where mistakes are widespread. Sometimes, it can be better to negotiate signing a short-term lease extension with your current premises, rather than trying to move in a short space of time.
How long your move will take from the planning stage to the actual relocation will vary depending on the size of your office. You’ll have to factor in enough time for the initial plan, finding a new location, planning your new layout, any construction work that will need to be done prior to moving, and the move itself. Overall, it can take anywhere from eight months for a small office to two years for a large office.
Not including your IT department
It’s vital that your IT department are included in planning from the outset. Not doing so could make it more difficult to get your IT set up properly in your new premises, ultimately resulting in a loss of time, money, and productivity.
Even if you think your new office will be a similar setup to where you are now, your IT department will need to have plenty of time to plan to disconnect and reconnect all the IT hardware. There may be different considerations in your new office, such as electric access, network connections, and space that your IT will need to work around.
It could be helpful to have an IT manager on the moving planning team, so they can contribute to what will be required for the IT needs of the business. Your IT team should also be allowed to see the new space when you find your new premises, so they can begin to plan how they will set up workstations etc.
Moving things you won’t need
Office relocation is a big project, no matter the size of your business. One way to streamline the process is to ensure you’re only moving furniture and equipment that you’ll definitely need to your new location. Your office relocation can be an opportunity to spring clean your business, getting rid of anything that no longer serves a purpose. This can free up space and make moving your office much more efficient. If you think you won’t initially need some items in your new office, but you want to keep a hold of them for a while, you can use business storage as a way to save space in your new premises.
You can also take this time to consider your document storage. You may be at a point where it would be more efficient and space-saving to store your documents off-site. Britannia has a number of records management and archive storage facilities across the UK, with barcoded archiving and full confidential storage.
Lack of leadership alignment
If your leadership isn’t completely on board with the relocation, you could find you face conflict and delays further down the line. This can be incredibly frustrating and result in wasted time as you try to resolve conflict mid-way through the move.
You can avoid this problem by making sure all your key decision-makers are involved with the plan early on. This could include your CEO, COO, and CFO, as well as possibly leaders from individual departments, such as IT and facilities. Your very first plan should ensure that everyone is happy with the move and knows why it is required and what the benefits of moving will be. Regular meetings will help to solve any problems and questions that leadership has as the project progresses.
Resistance from staff
It’s also important to ensure all your staff are on board with the move. Resistance from employees could make it much more difficult to relocate and could even affect staff retention.
To avoid this issue, communicate with your staff early about the relocation. It can be helpful to send out a survey to get feedback about what people want from their new office, such as space, location, and facilities. This will ensure your new office fulfils the needs of staff as well as the business. You should make sure to keep staff informed of key steps in the project, so they can plan their work around the relocation with minimal disruption.
You should consider how the relocation will impact your staff, for example, if you are moving from an urban to a rural location, will all your staff still be able to travel there? Would you need to find a location that has good public transport links, and/or adequate parking? By considering your staff needs when you relocate, you can ensure everyone is compliant and happy with the move.
Britannia Movers can help to make your office relocation a success. We have extensive experience moving all kinds of businesses, both large and small, across the UK. We have the local expertise and the resources that will be needed for your move, with a team of commercial removal experts on hand to assist with every step of the project.