Relocating your business can be a complex and stressful affair. Here's four ways you can ease the pressure and increase the chances of a fast, efficient move.
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It will come as no surprise that moving office has been cited as the second most stressful task for small business owners, closely behind hiring new staff. A study from E.ON has revealed that SMEs moving premises in the last five years have lost 7.5 working days each at a cost of an estimated £40,000.
These statistics are a stark reminder of the impact a poorly executed move can have on your business. The key to a smooth relocation lies in careful preparation and early planning to remove the stress of moving and greatly reduce the risk of error.
Follow our top four office moving tips to ensure a hassle free relocation:
Plan every detail
Before you go out and look for the perfect location, it is important that you make a decision on the reasons for this move and what your objectives are. At this stage some of the key questions you should be asking yourself include:
- Where do you want to move to?
- How much space do you require?
- When does the lease of your current premises end?
- What features do you consider essential for a new office space? From this list, which ones are you willing to compromise on?
- What is your budget?
An impressive office is a bonus, but only if the budget fits
Assign a Project Manager
Heed the warning of that age-old adage “too many cooks spoil the broth” and assign your best project manager to organise the move. The more people involved in the process, the greater the risk of error since even a small lapse in communication can have catastrophic affects.
A great project manager will ideally be in a position of seniority in the company, be trusted by management, have the ability to multi-task and have exceptional organisation skills. They need to have experience of working with budgets, be process driven and an effective communicator. Finally, it is important that this individual has enough time to dedicate to the office move project.
Call in the professionals
It is essential to have the experience and advice of relocation professionals when undertaking a move of this scale. Hiring a respected removals company is an investment and will safeguard you from critical mistakes being made further down the line that could impact on your company’s profitability.
Having professionals guiding you through every stage will help take the stress out of this often complex and time-consuming process and importantly, will save you money in the long run.
Create your new office floor plan
It is important to draw up a floor plan for your new office to avoid unnecessary anarchy on moving day. Ensure that you have considered the number of desks and factor in their shape and size. Assign each team member to one of these desks so that they can go straight into the new office and start unpacking their belongings.
To avoid nasty surprises, plan the office layout before you move in
Remember to leave enough space for chairs and gaps between desks for cabling. Be sure to include reception and storage areas, boardrooms and break-out rooms on your plan. Moving is inherently an upheaval but ensure that the chaos is organised to reduce stress.
Organise your team
Don’t forget to keep your employees fully up-to-date of moving plans and time schedules and emphasise the benefits of this move to the company and to them as individuals. How you communicate the move to employees is important.
Try using a number of methods including an intranet, team briefings and one-to-one meetings. This ensures that everyone is involved in the process and has the chance to ask any questions or raise concerns.
Some people are resistant to change and may feel apprehensive and quite negative about the experience, which is why it is important to provide some reassurance and positive energy.