Office moves are disruptive by default. How can you keep things moving - even as you move?
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Maintaining productivity during an office move can be difficult for SMEs because moving office is inherently disruptive. Every business wants their office move to run smoothly but it’s rare to get through this process without productivity slipping - that is, if measures are not taken to counteract this.
Ensuring the correct systems are in place to ensure that you arrive in an organised office will save a huge amount of unnecessary stress and result in substantial productivity gains.
Here are four ways SMEs can ensure their staff remain productive during an office move.
Making preparations well in advance of moving office is the best way to keep down time minimal and maintain optimal productivity. Appoint a trusted team within your company to manage the move internally and create a clear timetable and budget for the move.
Starting to pack non-essential items, devising a detailed floor plan of where everything will go in the new office, identifying areas of improvement in your current office set-up and any potential problems with your new office and gathering quotes for any handymen you require are all examples of things you can do early on.
Dedicating some time to put together a thorough checklist will ensure nothing gets missed and will give all parties involved in the move something to work from. This planning will help employees feel less anxious and more confident in your company’s ability to make a successful transition into a new office.
Communication within the business
It is essential to have a communication plan in place for your employees to keep them informed throughout the moving process. This can be done through a combination of regular company updates and one-to-one sessions to give your team time to voice any general concerns and provide you with valuable feedback on how to improve the new working environment.
Some people may be naturally more resistant to change than others, which can negatively impact on productivity so it is essential to tap into what they are feeling worried about and reassuring them why this is positive for them.
This could be done through meetings both before and after the move so that general concerns, queries or advice can be discussed and dealt with accordingly. “It’s important that you gain the support of staff but not to ask too much of them,” advises Anthony Robinson, Managing Director of Oxford Removals company Robinsons Removals.
“Make sure they know where to be and at what time and also anyway in which they could help. Be patient with them though as it could be just as stressful for them as it is for you and they’ll also need time to settle,” he adds.
Also, be sure to communicate clearly with them on their assigned tasks and designated roles in the move so that they know what is expected of them.
Call the professionals
When it comes to balancing the responsibility of making sure there’s nothing left behind, the internet and phones are working at your new location and trying to keep everybody engaged, hiring a professional removals company is essential in minimising risk when moving office.
The smallest mistake can have a huge impact on a company’s bottom line sales so it is important to get it right the first time. Gather quotes from professional moving companies several months before you move to ensure you can book your desired moving date before their schedule fills up.
Where possible, it is advisable to plan your move over a weekend or out-of-office hours to reduce business disruption.
Allowing the professionals to take over will ensure that the move is managed in the correct way from start to finish and will reduce your stress levels, leaving you to concentrate on the day-to-day running of your business.
Some moving companies will provide a project manager so you’ll always have a single point of contact to provide you with guidance and advice throughout the process.
Notifying your customers/ clients
Keeping your clients up-to-date is an important part of the moving process for many businesses but is often treated as an afterthought and is poorly executed as a result. Once you have found new premises, booked your removals firm and communicated your plans to the team, the next step should be to set up an in-house procedure for communicating details of your move to clients.
Clients will appreciate a personalised email and you can use your social media accounts to keep them engaged throughout the entire process. In the event that there is any disruption to your business, clients are likely to be more forgiving because they are prepared for it.
Overall, just remember to stay relaxed, follow these four steps and enjoy the moving process.