Posted in How-to, Moving Preparation, Moving Tips&Tricks on October 25, 2022
Daisy Wilson

Daisy was born in Salt Lake City and in her free time, she writes about moving and watches Charmed.

How to Have a Successful Long-Distance Office Move

Moving an office is a big undertaking, whether it’s across town or across the country. One of the most important things to consider when relocating is how to maintain business continuity during the transition. A long-distance office move can be especially challenging, but with careful planning, it can be done successfully.

The most important thing when organizing a move this big is to start planning on time and hire professionals to help you out. Here are some moving tips on how to make your long-distance office move a success. And most importantly, how to finish the whole process without unnecessary stress.

Start Planning Your Office Relocation Early

The first step in having a successful long-distance office move is to plan ahead. Start by making a list of all the tasks that need to be accomplished in order to make a move successful. Include everything from notifying customers and clients about the move to packing up and shipping supplies and equipment. Once you have a list of all the tasks that need to be completed, you can start creating a timeline for when each task needs to be completed. Make sure to allow yourself plenty of time, and don’t try to do everything at the last minute.

Ensure You Have a Designated Place Where People Can Get All the Info

No matter how big or complicated your office move is, there will be a ton of documentation. There will be spreadsheets, maps, diagrams, contracts, to-do lists, inventories, timetables, insurance records, and notes, all of which need to be quickly accessible.

Especially if this is your first move, we advise digitizing this data and putting it all in the cloud. This can be done by scanning or photographing physical papers. You can then access the move’s specifics from anywhere at any time.

Have a Detailed Timeline

No matter if you have a small move, like moving from house to apartment, or you’re relocating the whole business across the country, the best course of action is to have a detailed checklist of all the things that need to be done. Talk over the timeline with your team members to make sure it is as realistic as feasible. Additionally, give yourself plenty of time to finish the task. Preparation for a minor move might take up to three months while planning for a big move can take eight months to a year.

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Before the Big Office Move, Set a Budget

The next step is to set a moving budget. You need to do this once you decide where to relocate and before you hire movers. An office move is complicated, and there are many variables you need to include so you can spend your money responsibly. To make your move easier, set a meeting with all the management and cover each step of the move that needs to be taken and eventually paid for.

You need to establish what your company is willing to pay and what is not. For example, will you move all your furniture, or will you purchase another one once you relocate to a new state? Will you rent a moving truck and pack the office and organize everything alone, or will you choose a white glove moving company to do all the logistic planning and preparation on your behalf? Once you all agree on what your expenditures will be, you can start organizing your move.

Also, establish a payment and approval procedure for all move-related expenses before you finalize the budget.

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Announce Office Moving Process to Your Employees

Once you have established that relocation will happen, it is time to announce this change to your employees. Whether you decide to inform your team about the change by a hard copy letter, an email, or a video, make sure the content is thorough and provide them with all the information they require. Listed below are a few details to mention in your announcement:

  • The reason for a move,
  • Where the new office is located – building name, address change, floor,
  • Characteristics of the new office,
  • Changing dates if you have these planned already,
  • Employee obligations before the migration – steps they can take to help the process go smoothly.

Talk to Your Team

After the announcement is made, talk to your team members face-to-face once again. Relocating a business to another state may not be a good solution for all the team members. Ask each one of them whether they are willing to relocate for a job or not. Talk to the team to find a perfect solution that can be beneficial to both sides. For example, maybe some team members may continue to work from home.

It is also advantageous to distribute a survey after the in-person meeting to compile any individual preferences that your team members might not be comfortable to tell in a group situation, such as seating adjustments or a change in teams.

Make a List of Things You Need, Things You Have, and Things You Want to Get Rid Of

There is no doubt that each relocation comes with the required downsizing. Not only that your relocation will be much more efficient if you get rid of the things you don’t need, but your unpacking after the move and setting up the new office will be much easier without the unnecessary things you probably have in the office. So make a list of what you already have and what you need – whether it be equipment, furniture, supplies, or appliances, this will help you avoid overspending. Don’t forget to include the essentials like coffee mugs, trash cans, silverware, napkins, cleaning agents, rags, and other items you need every day.

Make a New Office Layout

Create the new office layout once you have a destination map and possibly a general floor plan. In order to set up things for the best workflow, be sure to take into account the feedback you obtained from your team members about their wishes for sitting arrangements.

Putting the new layout on paper can also assist you in identifying potential issues with the new space that you can then fix before moving in, such as a larger work area that requires extra desks or a few temporary partitions.

Desk and chairs in office
Talk to your team and make new arrangements in the office

Hire Professional Long-Distance Movers

One of the most crucial steps to a successful workplace transfer is hiring a moving company. You should choose white glove movers that specialize in this kind of transportation if at all possible. In addition to advice and practical techniques, they will have all the knowledge, equipment, and materials needed to make your relocation as smooth as possible. Make sure to hire long-distance moving services on time, at least three months in advance. This way, you will have time to organize other things, and your movers will be able to arrange everything, so there are no hiccups.

Ensure You Use All the Right White Glove Moving Services

When picking a company to help you relocate, it is crucial to find the one that can provide you with all the white glove moving services. Aside from standard things you need, like packing service, find a company that can provide you with additional services you will require, like car shipping. Also, when negotiating with the company, make sure to ask all the questions about their white glove moving service and what is included. Here are some of the questions you need to cover:

Is Packing Included in the Initial Quote?

Some companies offer standard packing services as part of their initial moving service. This means movers will pack all furniture and large items before placing them on a truck. Ask your potential movers if this is included in your office move.

How Do They Make a Price?

If a company gives you a quote without full in-person estimation, this is a huge red flag. The only way to get the correct quote is by creating a detailed inventory list with your movers. Only then can they give you a quote for a move.

What Is Covered by Insurance?

Most companies have Mandatory Liability Coverage, which covers all the items you place on a truck. However, you can take Full Value Replacement insurance or additional third-party insurance to cover all your equipment. Most companies give this coverage but only for the items they pack. Meaning you will have to take their packing services to have this insurance.

Will They Bring Their Packing Materials?

If you hire movers for packing service, ask them whether the packing materials are included in the price. Some companies don’t charge for this, while others will make additional charges for all the materials they use.

Do They Provide Storage Units?

It can happen that your new offices are not ready yet and you need to leave your old ones. Ask your movers if they can provide you with storage units. It would be more convenient to take these services from movers than rent storage by yourself because movers will keep your belongings until you are ready for them to be shipped. Some companies provide one month free of charge storage units while others do charge you for this from start to finish.

Meet the Team Again

There will be some concerns from your team members. So before moving day arrives, meet with them one more time to share any pertinent details that may not have been available previously. Your team members will feel more at ease switching offices if you do it that way. Give them the following information:

  • Parking,
  • Access information,
  • New city details,
  • Characteristics of the new area,
  • Routine alterations,
  • Travel arrangements,
  • Design of the new office.

Unpack and Start Celebrating

Before you begin tearing open boxes in a hurry to unpack, think about approaching this phase of the office move in the opposite way from how you approached the organized packing process. Run the records and procedures that you already established during the packing phase in reverse for a well-organized, stress-free (or at least less stressful) finish to your office move. Celebrate your successful and seamless shift once you’ve finished unpacking and settling in, and only then resume work.

Unpacking and celebrating may seem like an oxymoron, but it’s important to take a moment to appreciate all your hard work before jumping back into the grind. And if you have hired movers for packing, your unpacking will be much easier. With just a little bit of planning beforehand, your team will be ready to take on whatever challenges come your way in the new space.

As you can see, there are many factors to consider when planning an office move. But don’t worry – professional movers have years of experience and will make sure your transition is smooth and stress-free.

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