Moving offices can be a huge undertaking for SMEs. However, careful planning and preparation can ensure the transition is as smooth as possible for all involved, allowing work to resume quickly.
IT and communications infrastructure – the cornerstone of modern business – is usually the main cause of angst during an office relocation. If managers plan to get this in place quickly and efficiently, everything else should fall into place. It’s advisable to begin planning a move three months in advance to allow time for all services to be smoothly migrated.
Plan ahead; moving offices can be an ideal time to re-evaluate a company’s current and future IT needs. It may also be time to upgrade hardware and modernise, ready for a fresh start. Don’t leave this decision until the week before the move – make lists and plan any changes well ahead to minimise disruption and avoid unnecessary extra costs.
Be sure to assess company needs in the new location. Find out from the building owners the broadband or wireless capabilities well in advance to plan and budget for any upgrades that may be needed. A lower upload speed may have been sufficient for the previous tenant but it may not be enough for all companies.
Pay attention to how the new office will look and function; make notes of where computers will be, create a list of sockets which may need moving or installing, and plan where the server will reside.
Seeking assistance from professionals is a must in any office move. Getting in help from experts who are well versed in these scenarios will save a huge amount of time and minimise disruption. When it comes to IT and communication needs, professionals can help with the planning; advising of any needs and potential pitfalls that may occur, whilst liaising with phone and internet suppliers. All this will save managers a huge amount of time, whilst also helping to put their minds at ease.
Lastly, plan sufficient time for a crossover period. Phone lines should ideally be installed prior to the move date, allowing time for troubleshooting. This should avoid having engineers underfoot whilst packers are doing their thing. All this should also allow time for unexpected delays, like when that pesky broadband engineer doesn’t turn up on the appointed date or time.
Making sure all these things are in place will help minimise disruption around what can be a stressful time, allowing staff and managers to be free to carry on running the business.
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