A commercial move can make a home move looks like a walk in the park—and anyone that has stuffed their entire life into a moving van knows that it is anything but. However, with the pressure of finding the perfect new location, prepping employees for the move, safely transporting bulky or sensitive equipment, and everything in between, a commercial move is a bit more complex. But that doesn’t mean it has to be stressful.
With some key planning and prep, your commercial move can be a huge success. Here are our top 5 tips to make your move stress-free and efficient.
1. Give Yourself Time
A time cushion in most aspects of life is much welcome, but it is imperative for a successful commercial move.
The reality is that a commercial move takes more planning than a home move, so you are going to want to start the process and make your moving checklist anywhere from 4-6 months out from your intended moving date. This gives you enough time to find a suitable new location, as well as schedule any installs and outfit the new building with any equipment it needs.
Other key things you need to tackle in this time are:
- An internal communication plan (How will you keep your employees informed during the process?)
- An external communication plan (How will customers know where you moved?)
- A layout for the new space (How and where will everything and everyone fit?)
- Hiring professionals (What do you need help with? See tip 4 & 5)
Remember, while a new home may just require a fresh coat of paint and a cleaning before move-in, a commercial space may require phone lines and internet cables to be run through the walls, furniture or fixture installs, and general renovations to make it suitable for you and your employees.
2. Get Employee Input
You will certainly want to keep your employees informed about all move-related matters in a timely fashion, but don’t forget to also seek their input.
Taking the time to get employee input is often a moving step that is skipped, but it can be an absolute game-changer for employee retention during the transition, as well as ensuring your new office runs as efficiently as possible. What do they think would make the new location more efficient? What would make their jobs easier? And what does their commute look like?
While the latter question may seem odd, it is potentially the most important. Did you know that adding 20 minutes to an employee’s commute can lead to as much job dissatisfaction as giving them a 19% pay cut? Therefore, you should not only find out what mode of transportation your employees rely on to see if a potential new location is easily accessible to them but also inquire how the new space would impact their commute time.
3. Plan New Equipment Arrivals
Poor planning when it comes to new arrivals can be frustrating, time-consuming, and costly.
Whether you are expanding and need more equipment or are taking this move as an opportunity to upgrade, you will want to schedule any new arrivals carefully. Jumping the gun and ordering too early means that they will probably be arriving at your old location. While that may not seem like a huge problem, why are you spending both time and money to move this equipment twice?
Call the company you’re ordering from and scheduling shipping so it can arrive at the new office—just be sure to leave a little wiggle room in case of shipping delays.
4. Declutter & Organize
Out with old and in with the new—or sometimes, just out with the old.
Files overflowing in cabinets, obsolete technology stuffed into cupboards, and office supplies littering every drawer. If this scenario sounds familiar, then it may be time to consider decluttering. A move provides the perfect opportunity to sort through your old space and get rid of anything that is outdated or isn’t used. This will allow you to purge any unnecessary items, helping your new space be as organized and efficient as possible. A good rule of thumb? If it hasn’t been used in the past 2 years, toss it or donate.
If you are looking to save space and still using file cabinets, it may be time to consider transferring your files over to the cloud. There are many cost-effective plans available, and it can make file access both much more secure and efficient.
Need some help? Look into hiring a Professional Organizer. Not only can they help you with transferring your files to the cloud, but they can also assist with decluttering in general, as well as plan an efficient layout and find suitable storage solutions.
5. Do Business as Usual
One thing that should never have to suffer for a commercial move is productivity.
All the tasks on your moving checklist can make your plate feel like it’s overflowing, so it can be tempting to delegate tasks to your employees. However, that may not be in the best interest of the productivity of your organization—or your employees’ mental health.
Sure, if it falls under their job description, like getting IT to set up computers, that’s fine. However, asking Rhonda from accounting to pack up the supply closet? Resist the urge. Instead, bring in professionals that can clear your plate, make the move more efficient, and allow your employees to continue their regular jobs.
Office Move Manager: A move manager is strictly in charge of the move and can handle everything from scoping out the best locations to confirming that you have access to the new building and its amenities on move-in day. They basically take on your whole moving checklist, leaving you with a lot more time—and whole lot less stress.
Professional Movers: They have the equipment and expertise to make your move go quickly and smoothly. Plus, with them doing the heavy lifting, you don’t risk injury to yourself or your employees. Just make sure that any company you hire has proof of insurance, a high rating on www.bbb.com, and the proper licensing.
A little planning and patience will go a long way in ensuring your commercial move goes as smoothly as possible. But the truth is, even with the best planning, you may run into some unexpected challenges. Just breathe and take them as they come. The moving process won’t last forever, but the benefits that your business may reap from a move are another story.