8 Tips for Relocating Your Business
Compute the Cost
The costs associated with relocation arenít limited to hiring movers and purchasing packing materials. You also have to consider working hours lost during the move and the potential loss of customers who live near your current location. Certain costs, such as utilities and rent, may be higher in your new building. Keep all of this in mind when budgeting for your move, and save all of the receipts you amass to double-check spending once youíre settled in.
Make a Plan
Getting back up and running as quickly as possible minimizes the losses your business experiences during a move. Before relocating, meet with your employees to create a schedule and map out a floor plan. Delegate tasks to teams and assign trusted supervisors to handle each one. Take care of administrative duties yourself, such as calling ahead to get phone and Internet services in place and utilities up and running so that everything is ready when you get there.
Book Movers Early
Waiting until the last minute to hire a moving company deprives you of the chance to shop around for the best deal and the most reliable service. Begin looking for movers at least a couple of months in advance of relocating your business. Compare different companies to find one that offers all of the services you need. Call your top choices to ask about what kind of insurance they carry and if it covers potential damage to business property during the move in addition to compensating for injuries sustained by the movers.
Get a Head Start
Packing can be the most time-consuming part of relocation. Begin by boxing up the things that arenít used every day. By the time you get to the date of the move, all that should be left are the barest business essentials. Get help from employees, friends and family to make the process go faster. Even if you plan to hire movers, doing the packing yourself gives you complete control over what gets stowed where.
Streamline and Simplify
As you pack, determine what items you no longer need and which need to be upgraded. Donate, recycle or sell unwanted equipment before the move to minimize the amount you have to pack and unpack. Using sturdy totes instead of cardboard boxes also cuts down on time since they donít need to be assembled or broken down.
Be Careful with Electronics
Most businesses have at least one computer and a set of peripherals that will need to be moved. Back up important files to a secure external location before relocating, and double-check the efficacy of the backup. During packing, store cords and cables in individual bags numbered to correspond to the devices they go with. Wrap all electronics in bubble wrap or blankets and secure the wrap with tape. For items such as scanners, see if the instruction manual or website has specific manufacturer instructions for packing. Improper transportation may void the warranty in the event of damage.
Every box, bag and container used during your business move should be clearly labeled with its contents and numbered to ensure that what gets packed at the old location makes it to the new facility. Mark fragile boxes prominently, and point out delicate electronic items to movers so that they can be packed in a way that prevents jarring and bumping during the trip. These steps not only help you track items and inventory but also make the unpacking process go much more quickly once everything arrives.
Update Your NAP
Short for name, address and phone number, your NAP is the main information that customers and business contacts need when they want to get in touch with you. Before moving, notify institutions such as the post office, banks, creditors or credit card companies and any other lending institutions of your new location. Announce the move to your customers, and update your NAP everywhere that your business appears online, including social media and location-based services. Change your print ads and local listings, and search Internet directories to make absolutely sure that all records are correct.
The less time it takes to move your business, the sooner you can get up and running and take advantage of all that your new location has to offer. Prior planning, smart packing and proper delegation of tasks minimizes the costs associated with shutting down and relocating. With the help of a reliable moving company, youíll have your business set up and operating smoothly in its new facility in no time.
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