How to operate your business during a move. A publication by move expert Schmidt (nd) states the following:
When moving a business, it’s critical that downtime is kept to a minimum. Each day that a company fails to provide services, ceases production or reduces the amount of work that’s completed, is a day of lost revenue, followed by the potential for permanent loss of customers who decide to take their business elsewhere. Keeping your business fully running during a move is essential to any company’s success. And the key to that success, is to Create a Comprehensive Moving Plan to ensure both employees and the public are aware of your moving schedule.
Should We Hire an Outside Consultant?
Hiring a moving consultant is a good idea if your company is short on time and/or staff. A move will take a lot of human resource time and energy to complete, so when you’re planning for the move make sure you take this into consideration. Staff time should be put into your moving budget as an expense. Before deciding if you should hire an outside company or consultant, crunch the numbers to see how much you’ll be spending if you keep the moving services internal to your company. Again, consider how many full-time staff will be required to plan, implement and execute the move. This should also include time for marketing and Notification to Customers and Service Providers. It may be worth your company’s while to hire an outside consultant to handle all the moving details.
What About a Communications Plan?
A fundamental key to any moving plan must include a communications plan. If you have a medium to large company, it’s a good idea to create separate internal and externals plans; employees will need to be kept abreast of time frames well in advance of public notification. An internal plan should include employee roles, tasks to be completed and predetermined meetings when employees will have a chance to provide input, ask questions and assist in making decisions. Remember, the more employees are involved in the initial decision-making steps, the more they’ll be on board for the move.
If you’re a large or medium-sized company, external plans can be divided into audience types: customers, suppliers and service providers. For smaller companies or for companies with the majority of audience members residing in just one of these categories, one communications plan should suffice. A plan must include a detailed time frame, one that is established well-ahead of the move. Your employees and the public will need to know the move date, the hours of operation, if there will be any downtime and who they can speak to if they have any concerns. Also determine how the move may impact service delivery or production, which should also be sent out to customers well in advance of the move.
Once you have a plan in place, assign roles to staff as appropriate with given time frames for completion. Tasks that will need to be completed also include updating the contacts database, writing and formatting communication pieces – flyers, emails, notification letters, newspaper ads and/or telephone scripts – and ensuring that means of return reply are in place. In other words, make sure All Business Information is Updated.
When is the Best Time to Move?
There are two time considerations when planning a move: what time of year to move and what days of the week are best to move. Both factors depend on the type of business you’re running. Some companies find that summer months produce the largest sales volumes, so winter moves are probably best. For retail businesses whose busiest season may be Thanksgiving and Christmas, a spring move might have the least impact on your operation. Likewise, weekday moves may prove to be best for retail business since most transactions occur on weekends; choose less busy sales days such as Monday or Tuesday.
How Much Time Will We Need?
Like all moves, this depends on how much stuff you have to move. Some companies can move within a day or two while others may require more move time. The answer to this question also depends on how much money you can afford to spend on your move; the more money you put towards the move, the more helping hands you can hire.
If you’re fortunate enough to have access to the new location prior to your move-in date, you may want to decide which pieces of the company can be moved early. This way, vital components can be moved, set-up and ready to keep business operating during the rest of the move.
Hire Enough Movers
I always recommend that businesses hire movers to do the actual move. Hiring a reputable company will prove to be worth every single penny when you find that your move is completed within the needed time frame. Often with business movers, they can assess your operation, and knowing the maximum amount of time you want the move to take, they’ll recommend the appropriate number of movers to ensure the job gets done on time.
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Schmidt, Diane. “How to Operate Your Business During a Move.” About.com Moving. About.com, n.d. Web. 18 Oct. 2013.