Male movers carrying shelving unit into new house
How To Have A Successful Move For Your Business
There are many reasons why your business would move to a new location. It could be because the business has grown and needs more space. Perhaps the current landlord has sold the building or no longer wants to continue any agreement regarding the space you’re occupying. The space may no longer meet your needs and it’s time to move on. Your current office space may have been damaged or destroyed by fire or flood. Whatever the reason, If you have to move your business location, you’re going to need a plan.
Assuming you’re moving your business, you need to decide where you’re going. Whether you’ve had the luxury of time to plan a move or the move is an immediate, unplanned need, the issues are the same. Whether you’re moving an office or a manufacturing.
Where are you moving? What is the occupancy date? Do your staff, customers and vendors know that you are moving? What are the consequences of your move? Will you be able to simply transfer existing staff to the new location, will you have to let some employees go, or will there be some resignations?
Once you set moving date, notify your current landlord. If you are using a moving company, make sure you retain them as soon as possible and confirm that they are booked for the move on the correct date. If you’re doing the move yourself, reserve any trucks and equipment you need.
Once you set a moving date and know where you are going, order new business stationary. If necessary, have labels printed with your new address so you can avoid sending correspondence that has the old address on it.
You need to set a close date for old location, an open date for new location. Avoid trying to run a business from two locations at the same time. It’s too confusing, things get lost, people get frustrated. Don’t want to lose time if you have an ongoing business. That means you’ll have to prep the new location, then move on a day you’re usually closed so you open at the new spot. Example: Friday last day at the old office. Saturday and Sunday, you move into new space, Monday you open for business at the new location.
Start on the detail work. Make sure you have the necessary insurances on your new location set up to go into effect on move day. Notify your employees. Some employees may be unhappy with a new location. Don’t try to keep it a secret from your staff – that simply won’t work. Be prepared to possibly close your office or business on what would be the last day at your current location to be able to move everything and reopen on the next business day.
If your facility is in any way connected directly with the local police department, fire station or security company, make that you notify them of the time of the move. A courtesy call will help avoid false alarms and calls. If you have any neighbors in your building or nearby your office, also let them know that you are moving your business. Be sure to let any vendors that have deliveries in transit to you know so they can make sure everything follows up properly and deliveries do not get delayed or misrouted.
Get your phone service set up to be switched over. If you can, make sure phones are working at the new facility. If your number has changed, make sure there is a recording to accommodate forwarding calls. Take the time to ensure that important clients and employees have your cell phone number so they can reach you in an emergency during the move. Everyone should know what your new mail and shipping addresses are. Remember to file a mailing change of address with your local post office.
Notify your insurance company and any state or municipal licensing agency that you are moving and provide them with updated contact information. If you have a security system in either location, let the company know so service can be moved and be continuous.
Make sure your staff is caught up with any outstanding projects and issues before the move. It’s hard enough to move and pay attention to day to day business at the same time. Just before you move, clean out your files and purge where possible or send archived files to storage before the move. Let staff come in business casual to pack and move. Moving days are often blue jean days. If necessary, get temporary help to come to the office and answer phones and help pack files, samples, inventory and furnishings. Clean out files and archive everything you can to avoid moving something that you don’t need.
Be aware if you have any files that should be kept confidential or be protected. Files that contain original documents or personnel information should be Check with your accountant to make sure you are not throwing out anything you would need.
If you have employees who bring service animals with them to work on a regular basis or employees that have disabilities, make sure they know what is being planned so that any special needs are take into consideration.
Make duplicate copies of your computer operating system, programs and files. Make sure one copy of your computer data and information is moved but not included in the truck or with any other documentation or furniture. If necessary, have someone designated to hand carry and protect the file so it’s not damaged and you will be able to get your information systems up and running quickly. This duplication is cheap insurance.
Have a sign made indicating you’ve moved that you can put in your window or door. Check with your new location to make sure that updated signage is available and that your company’s name is added to the building directory so anyone looking for you can easily locate you.
On the days you are moving in or moving out of a location, bring in coffee and donuts for staff and any temporary help. Be prepared to order lunch in on those days. If you can get into your destination space before the move, do so to check for utilities, cleanliness, restroom availability and any other concerns. Consider hand carrying some office supplies and coffee machines over between move out and move in. Be sure to have a first aid kit and a box containing some cleaning supplies and garbage bags available.
Planning for a move is important. From filing a mailing change of address at the beginning to turning the lights on at your location, over-planning will help you minimize any disruption to your business flow and processes and allow you to be effective from day one at your new address.
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