Guest Post by: Samantha Hornby
Blue Link ERP recently moved office locations and for anyone else who has ever moved locations, I think you will agree that it is not an easy exercise. Luckily for us, we were only moving a couple of clicks down the road, and didn't have to deal with the added complexity of moving further. As part of the moving committee I was heavily involved in the entire process, and learnt quite a few tips and tricks that I wanted to pass along. I have also included the moving check-list that my team and I put together, which is a great starting point for getting organized.
Tip #1 – Create a Moving Committee
One of the first things you will want to do when preparing for a move is to create a moving committee. This team should be comprised of a handful of people from different departments who volunteer to take on the added responsibility of the move. Make sure those involved in the committee will be able to manage the added work without neglecting their regular responsibilities. Having people from different departments makes it easier to ensure nothing important is missed and leaves room for flexibility when it comes to scheduling work. It is also important that someone with decision making authority is involved with the committee in order to approve expenses and major decisions.
Tip #2 – Create Documentation to Organize the Move
In order to stay organized throughout the entire move process it is important to keep track of responsibilities, contacts and dates. You will see in Blue Link’s moving check-list that specific to-do items have been categorized based on whether they affect the old office or the new, whether they are administrative in nature, or if they apply to the actual move date. Each item on the list should be assigned to an employee on the moving committee, given a date of required completion and assigned a priority level if necessary. Certain tasks, although important, can be addressed after the actual move itself. Another tip is to keep a list of move contacts all in one place for easy access. This may include the moving company, new building manager, service contacts for any installations or renovations, phone and internet contact etc. We scheduled meetings with several contractors and companies for the same day, and having a list of contacts made on-going communication much simpler.
Tip #3 – Do Not Overwhelm Yourself with Too Many Choices
When it came to Blue Link’s office move, some of the more minor decisions ended up taking the most amount of time. When it comes to decisions such as fabric colors for new office furniture, although this is important, having too many options can drag the decision making process into something that is longer than necessary. Just like we preach to our clients the dangers of evaluating too many software vendors, too many color options are unnecessary in order to make a decision. Define a budget and ask for a couple of recommended options based on quality and design, instead of sorting through all available choices. For certain businesses, interior decorating may be of higher importance, but for most businesses you will be able to choose the best option without sorting through every available design.
Tip #4 – Throw a Party!
Moving office locations can be stressful, but no matter the reason, it should also be treated as an exciting opportunity. Get staff involved in the process and excited for a change of scenery by keeping them updated throughout the move process and providing information on things to do and places to eat in the area around the new office. Celebrate with a party once you’re settled into the new office, inviting friends and family as well as close customers. Moves can be expensive, so the party does not have to be lavish, but it will help employees adjust to their new surroundings and deal with the stress associated with a move.