growing - Texas Bar Practice

Plan for Office Relocation

Jen Perez

How to Plan for Office Relocation

Things to Do Prior to the Move: 

There are eight basic steps to follow in preparing for an office relocation:

12 Months Prior to the Move 

  1. Assign project manager, coordinator and dedicated word processor.
  2. Determine how much space will be needed now and in the future.
  3. Project personnel growth, and possible future equipment changes.
  4. Locate space.
  5. Estimate costs.
  6. Negotiate for space.
  7. Secure complete accurate copy of all permanent partitions etc., if new building, hire architect to prepare layout.
  8. Adopt a maximum reasonable budget for the moving project.

11 Months Prior to the Move 

  1. Begin a search for sub tenants if needed.
  2. Analyze individual office size requirements, clerical space needs, and special room requirements i.e. lunch, conference, library, etc., and project growth.
  3. Determine the style which the offices should project.
  4. Review all current office systems for handling; a) files b) wp c) acctg d) timekeeping and billing e) telephone – to determine future changes required and consider in new plans.
  5. Finalize a program for development of final layout.
  6. Begin inventory to determine usable furniture etc.

9 Months Prior to the Move 

  1. Develop schematic layout drawings for the space.
  2. Finalize lease agreements, including all tenant specifications.
  3. Review in more detail the projected costs for the total project and begin to cut out items as needed to meet the budget.
  4. Between steps three and four refinements in the schematic layouts will take place.

6 Months Prior to the Move 

  1. Agree on final layouts for space and plans for heating and ventilation and air conditioning, electrical outlets and telephone outlets, furniture locations and specific details in such areas as library and kitchen facilities.
  2. Begin sending initial furniture orders to vendors to assure delivery in time for the move. Arrange for storage locally for any furniture that arrives prior to the moving date. (Note… some vendors require even more advanced notice.)
  3. Notify the phone company of planned move and get cost estimates for the move … will telephone number be the same?
  4. Have engineering drawings done, architectural drawings prepared, and construction specifications developed by architect.
  5. Send final sets of plans to contractors for construction bids or estimates.

5 Months Prior to the Move 

  1. Receive bids and negotiate with contractor.
  2. Review budget again.
  3. Finalize carpet orders and be sure that orders for special building materials or finishes, which may take a long time, are sent out.
  4. Order window coverings or drapes.
  5. Be sure that all furniture orders have been placed and acknowledged with expected delivery dates.
  6. Start track sheet for furniture and equipment.

3 Months Prior to the Move 

  1. Begin to clean out office items which should not be moved. Purge files.
  2. Select, hire and schedule moving company; get estimate of cost for moving.
  3. Check and revise budget again.
  4. Arrange for disposal of furniture and equipment not being moved. Some can be sold or traded in.
  5. Begin preparation of change of address announcements.
  6. Begin to select who is getting which new office.
  7. Contact city to see if any street repairs are planned for either move location.

1 Months Prior to the Move 

  1. Plan for moving “teams” of employees. Develop time schedules.
  2. Recheck with moving company on packing requirements, times for moving, crews to be assigned, methods for making furniture ready to be relocated, etc. Notify police and traffic controller of pending move.
  3. Schedule building elevators to assure speedy service during the move. Also be sure that all items to be moved will fit into the elevators.
  4. Recheck with phone company on moving commitment date. See whether concurrent service on your new and old locations can be set up.
  5. Engage cleaning crew to remove packing and clean up damage after move.
  6. Engage security guards to watch furniture and equipment while it is sitting outside the new building waiting to be moved. Arrange for excess moving insurance if needed.
  7. Order change of address notices from a printer. Be sure all employees send change of address notices on all their personal mail.
  8. Engage a plant service to deliver and maintain plants.
  9. Prepare and hand out a set of “Move Guidelines.”

1 Week Prior to the Move 

  1. Mail change of address notices and send out client announcements, (Open House??)
  2. Review all plans with the moving teams, moving company and building managers.
  3. Remove all personal items … they can be taken to the new location later.
  4. Watch weather reports.
  5. Happy moving!

The information provided and the opinions expressed in this monograph are solely those of the author. Neither the State Bar of Texas nor the author are rendering legal, accounting or professional advice and assume no liability in connection with the suggestions, opinions, or products mentioned.