Downsizing, upsizing, or anything in-between, if you have an office move coming up, then you probably have a lot weighing on your mind. After all, not only do you have to find a new home base for your business, but everyone knows that packing is a lot of work and moving day itself can be quite taxing. Thankfully, there are a few ways you can approach an office move so you don’t burn out. Juggling running a business and a move will still be difficult, but these 5 best ways to approach an office move will make it much easier for both you and your employees.
1). Research Local Commercial Movers
Movers aren’t just there to take care of the heavy lifting, but they can also take other moving tasks off your plate. For example, they can deal with sourcing supplies, booking amenities on moving day, navigating parking for unloading, and even handle packing and unpacking. However, who you hire can make or break your move. A few key tips for booking movers for an office move include:
Experience: You want to find movers with a commercial moving background and at least 3 years of experience moving in your destination city. This not only assures you they aren’t fly-by-night scammers, but it also means that they know their way around the city’s intricacies. For example, in Los Angeles, you want LA movers who have extensive experience with the heavy traffic and the odd parking rules. Otherwise, the window of time you’ve booked for the elevators and any other amenities in your new building may close before everything is unloaded. Moving your business to New York? Walk-ups are abundant, so you’ll need movers with experience maneuvering furniture and equipment through tight spaces to avoid damage.
Reviews: Look at multiple sources to check the company’s reviews and pay special attention to those revolving around commercial moves. You want to ensure that they have a high overall rating and past customers are pleased with their service. You can find this information on www.bbb.com, Yelp, Google Reviews, and the company’s social media pages—to name a few.
Packages: Look at the moving packages available and determine the amount of help that you want. You may just need a hand on moving day, want professional packers to take care of boxing items, or want to do as little as possible with a white glove move. A white glove move is a premium package where pictures of your office will get taken before your move in order to set up the new space in the same fashion. With this service, custom crates may also get built for sensitive equipment to provide extra protection.
2). Be Open with Employees
Don’t keep your team in the dark when it comes to the move—this can harbor mistrust and lead to unneeded anxiety among workers. Instead, tell employees about the move ASAP. They will naturally have questions regarding not only what the move means for the company, but their position as well. So offer as much information as possible. Even if you don’t have all the details, let them know that you will keep them updated through email or meetings as more information becomes available
Also, be sure to let employees know that your door is always open for any questions and concerns regarding the best ways to approach an office move. Keeping them informed and caring about their needs sends the right signals during this transition and can help you retain your valuable team by keeping them happy.
3). Check the Commute Time
Location isn’t just important for customers and clients to find you, but it is also crucial to keep employees satisfied. Studies have shown commute time impacts job satisfaction and adding 20 minutes to an employee’s commute makes them as miserable as a 19% pay cut. This is with the exception of bikers and walkers, but still a significant consideration. Therefore, when looking for a new location, check to see what it means for your employees’ commutes.
A simple way to do this is a quick employee survey that discusses what their current commute looks like (time, method of transportation, etc.) While you’re at it, you may want to ask what amenities or improvements to the office could increase their work life satisfaction or make their job easier. After all, a move is the perfect time to make these changes!
4). Book Utilities and Installs ASAP
You ideally want to get the new office up and running before moving your whole team in, so book installs, renovations, and utility services early. This will help ensure that internet and phones are up and running, any necessary renovations are finished, and that hydro and running water are available from the get-go.
If there is one department to move in before anyone else, we highly suggest it be your IT department. That way, they can work out any kinks with the install and learn to navigate any new equipment before the rest of the troops move in. This means that they will be able to put their full focus on tech support when the other employees set up their workstations, which can safeguard office productivity by getting you up and running faster.
5). Best Ways to Approach an Office Move May Include Coworking
When facing an office move, one commonly overlooked option is coworking spaces. These shared spaces may have a different feel than a traditional office, but they also come with a lot of benefits—many of which can make your move easier.
Included Utilities: Internet and hydro are included in your membership price and split among patrons. Therefore, your utility costs will be less than a traditional office and you won’t have to schedule installs.
Pay for What You Need: Most coworking spaces have flexible pricing plans depending on your team’s size and the amenities you need.
Room to Grow: Next time your team expands, you won’t be stuck making another office move. These spaces can accommodate teams of 1-100. As a bonus, you also won’t need to invest in more furniture as your team expands as shared desks and office chairs are included.
Amenities: If you handed out an employee survey (see tip 3) and many cited that an on-site fitness facility would improve their work life, a coworking space can help. These workspaces come with a variety of amenities, from fitness facilities to private conference rooms. Some even offer free seminars for professional growth to members and unique modern amenities like podcast studios.
Energetic Environment: These open spaces often have an energetic vibe that can help employees think of innovative solutions and cultivate creative ideas.
As a business evolves, an office move is inevitable at one point or another. And it can be stressful. But using the best ways to approach an office move can make all the difference. By getting the help you need, keeping employees in the loop, tending to your team’s needs, planning early, and considering all your options, you will be setting your new office up for success before the heavy lifting even begins.