Business has been going great. Sales are up, you’ve added new employees, and your customer base is growing. Congratulations.
Now you’ve run out of space and have to move your company.
Like other aspects of running a business, office moving or warehouse relocations are not just about equipment and inventory, they are about people too.
From minimizing short-term business disruption to gaining long-term buy-in, how you treat the employees during the moving process is critical to any corporate relocation. Here are four tips to help your employees cope with and thrive during an office relocation.
- Communicate about the business move early
Change is challenging for many people. The earlier in the process employees know about the move the better they can adjust to the realities of moving. The more time you can provide employees to get used to the idea of a move, the more easily they can handle the move when it happens.
Senior management should also clearly communicate the reasons for the move. Though the needs for a move may be apparent to management, employees will inevitably ask “why do we have to move?” The sooner management addresses that question, the faster employees can start to deal with the move.
- Make employees part of the corporate move process
Being part of the moving process will make the move easier to handle. It can also help generate excitement among the employees. How you incorporate employees into the moving process will depend largely on your company culture, but here are some ideas to get you started:
- Hold “town hall” meetings with employees and senior management to take questions, receive feedback, and create dialogue.
- Survey employees about what they would like to see in a new office, or the area around the new office. Try to incorporate these in the decision about the move.
- Form an employee advisory group to help facilitate communication with senior management.
- When a location is selected, give the employees “company time” to visit the new area.
- Create A New Location Packet
When a new office is selected, created a packet with information about the building and surrounding area. The Location Packet will help to remove much of the “unknown” that can make employees nervous about the new business location. What’s included in the package depends on the area but some things are local restaurants, shops, activities as well as public transportation. If there are unique things about the area, include them as well.
If time allows, consider visiting some of the local businesses and ask about special deals or discounts. Include these in the packet to give employees a place to start exploring.
- Make it an event
Moving the business is a big deal. Mark this with an “office warming” party. The event will give employees a chance to gather informally, decompress from a long process, and talk about their experience. Schedule the event for about a week after the move to give people a chance to explore and have things to discuss about their experience.
Good employees care about their responsibilities. One of the best ways to help them is to minimize the disruption the move has on their ability to do their jobs. Working with a professional commercial moving company is the best way to ensure that employees can focus on their jobs. Contact us early in the moving process for a free on-site evaluation to get started.