Most companies carry out an office relocation at least one in their life time. It’s never an easy decision to make but there are certain conditions where you’re only option is to move to a new building. It may be that you’ve out-grown your office space, you may be looking for a better or new location or a space that better suits your needs. Whatever the reason you have for moving or relocating your office space it can prove to be extremely stressful if not done in a planned and thoughtful way.
There are two elements to any office relocation. The actual moving of your current office and the refurbishment of the office space you will be moving to. We’ll cover these two elements separately.
As with any major project, which an office relocation is, it requires proper planning to ensure a successful office move. Planning, preparation and communication are key. Laying the groundwork is essential to success.
Once you’ve made the decision to relocate your office the first task is to put an office relocation and office refurbishment plan in place. Your plan will outline the tasks required during the move to make your relocation as seamless and stress free as possible.
It’s important to take as much time as possible to write your office location and office refurbishment plan. You shouldn’t rush this step. If you do you’re likely to miss steps or find that you haven’t thought about everything you need to do. You should start planning months in advance. This isn’t something g you can leave until the last minute. You may need to refine your plan throughout the office relocation process but by having a step by step plan in place you can be sure that you will not overlook anything and that each task is completed in the timeframe you have specified. By doing so you improve your chances of a successful office relocation that will minimise downtime, complete the move on time and keep to budget.
Your Office Relocation Plan
Every office relocation will be different but there are tasks that will always have to be carried out no matter the project. It’s also important to make sure to include those tasks will be important to your specific project. Your main aim is to ensure all details are covered. The list below is broken down into groupings. It gives you an overview of some of the things we believe are important to cover.
Your office relocation team
- Assign a primary person who will be responsible for the move. This person will be the go-to person for any decision with regards to the office relocation.
- Put together a project team who will work with the primary. This should include team members from all major departments who will be impacted e.g. your IT people should be involved as they will need to be aware of when to disconnect, box up then put back together network servers, computers and other IT equipment before and after the move.
- Start to document the steps that will be required before, during and after the move and who will be responsible for each task and timelines on when the tasks should be completed so that you have a clear idea of what needs to be done, who will be doing it and when.
- Detail key dates such as the termination date for your current lease, the date you are looking to make your office move, when a new lease would need to be signed by, your new office refurbishment start and end dates, when your office relocation will take place by.
- Be aware that if you plan to leave before your current lease is up then there may be a penalty for leaving early. This and any other items should be factored into your office relocation budget.
- Define the budget for your office relocation.
- Your project team should review the costs throughout the process to ensure you stay on budget.
- They should highlight any issues they feel may impact the budget and what they will be doing to get it back on track.
Your office inventory
- Start an inventory of all the equipment to be moved and prioritise what will be moved and installed first in the new office space.
- Think about how equipment should be packed and labelled and who will be responsible.
- Ensure that any paperwork is removed from office and storage furniture and secured before the move.
- Assign responsibility for who will be at the new office location to supervise the unpacking and placement of equipment.
- Look for removal companies and get quotes with a view to finding the best removal company that will meet your needs who will also provide for money.
- Check whether you’ll need insurance or whether you’ll be covered by your removal company for any issues or damage to your equipment.
- Send a detailed floor plan to your removal company, or arrange a meeting at the new premises, if needed, to go over where everything has to go within the new office space.
Who needs to be informed?
- Think about who you need to inform regarding your move e.g.
- your current landlord or property manager and schedule when you will give them official notice of when you plan to leave
- inform your employees as early as possible as the move will have the biggest impact on them
- plan to contact any suppliers in a timely manner so you know that new supplies will be delivered to the right address
- your customers will also need to know when you move.
- It’s a good idea to start a list of all the people who you need to send a change of address notice to.
- Order updated stationery, business cards, brochures, and invoices etc that require a change of address.
- You should also plan to update your company website and any online business directory entries, your Google My Business entry and any other online entries where you have used your address.
- Put together a “moving pack” with information for employees so they have directions to the new office. This should include information on parking and public transport and where their desk will be located within the new office space.
On your office relocation day
- Make sure that everyone knows what their roles and responsibilities are on relocation day.
- Keep your relocation plan to hand with all required contact numbers including any emergency numbers that may be required. There’s nothing worse on moving day than finding you don’t have the right information to hand if there are any issues.
- Ensure that access to your new office space including building and office keys, any required access codes etc. are available.
- Check that you’re listed in your new building’s directory.
- Organise a cleaning crew to clean the office space you are leaving so that you leave your “old” space clean and tidy.
As well as your office relocation plan you’ll need an office refurbishment plan for your new office space. Below we’ve outlined some of the steps and information you’ll need to make sure your office refurbishment goes to plan and that the office you’re moving to will meet all your needs.
Your Office Refurbishment Plan
Before you move you need to make sure your new office space needs to meet your new needs.
Given that an office move is a major decision you want to make sure that when you move into your new building and offices that they enable you to meet the objectives that you set out when you first made the decision to relocate. It’s worth revisiting those objectives to be sure your new office space will meet your current and future needs, at least for some time into the future.
Your office refurbishment team
- Identify a primary lead who will be responsible for any final refurbishment decisions and who will work closely with your office refurbishment company.
- Put together a team who will work with the office refurbishment lead.
- Look at having a multi-department team who can help advise on various aspects of your company from human resources to IT, finance, facilities management, marketing and any other departments within your company.
Look at your objectives
- Think about the future growth of your company and how it will impact on the space you’ll require.
- Consider what you want to achieve from your new offices.
- Set out what space you’ll need including open plan, individual offices, meeting rooms, break out areas, kitchen and tea point, reception area, meet and greet areas etc.
Find the right office refurbishment company
- Working with an office refurbishment and fit-out contractor company will help you to get the most out of your project and your office space. An office refurbishment is a major investment so choosing the right office refurbishment company is vital to the success of the project.
- You’ll need a company who knows how to plan your refurbishment and help you to visualise how your new office space will look when it’s finished. By working through your objectives and building them into the design you will be able to ensure that your office refurbishment will work well for you, your business, your employees and your customers.
- Work with your chosen office refurbishment company on the design of your office refurbishment to include any objectives identified during the planning stage.
- Planning your refurbishment is a good time to reassess your current equipment and furniture and think about replacing outdated furnishings especially if you are moving to an office space that’s bigger in size.
- Look at the inventory you put together in the office relocation guide. This will help you to decide what you need to take with you and what needs to be replaced. Think about how you will dispose of any office furniture you decide you no longer need.
- Work with your office refurbishment company to replace any furniture you are going to need. Buy additional furniture for your new office space which will work with your new office design and layout.
- Relocation also provides an excellent opportunity to purge unwanted paper files and to move to digital storage which may also help reduce needed storage furniture.
Once Your Office Relocation Is Complete
Once your move to your new office building is complete, your new furniture is installed, your networks, computers and printers are back online and your phones are connected etc. you’ll want to get back to business as usual as soon as possible. This should be your first priority but there are a few things you should remember to do to complete your move:
- Perform a detailed walkthrough of the office space and note any issues or damages to report to the removal company or building owner.
- Transfer your insurance to your new location.
- Complete and file any warranty information for new furniture and equipment.
- Update your fixed asset list with any new equipment or furniture and record any items which have been disposed of.
- Create and distribute new phone lists and department locations.
- Where required make sure staff have new security passes or keys for their new offices.
- Ensure that your old lease has been wound up.
- Issue a press release about your change of address.
Equipping your company with a comprehensive office relocation and refurbishment plan can make the entire moving process less stressful and more efficient. Working with a professional office refurbishment and fit out contractor can also make all the difference in providing the right support and expertise to ensure your office move is successful.
JBH Refurbishments Office Refurbishment and Fit Out Contractor
JBH Refurbishments offer office relocation support. We will work with you from the early stages of your office relocation plans. Once you have selected a few properties we will look at the available space and provide you with sound advice on the most suitable office for your business needs. This advice will take into account your current staff numbers as well as the future growth of your business.
Take advantage of JBH Refurbishments 25+ years of expertise in carrying out Sussex, Essex, Kent and London office relocation and interior fit outs by contacting us via our contact form or calling us on 0333 207 0339.