Off to the box! Some handy hints for relocation management

By Bernhard Kern, Roomware Consulting, 05. April 2018

If only it were that simple – packing, moving, unpacking. At first, relocating an office may seem like a mere trifle. But in fact it is a challenge for everyone: quite frequently relocations are a real obstacle course with chaos instead of order waiting at the end.


Why is that? The relocation specialists of Roomware Office Consulting have a rather simple answer: Everything has to be done quickly – which means in most cases that careful preparation is neglected. As a rough rule of thumb for relocation, the following applies: 80 percent of success is related to good preparation. When it comes to relocation, the aim is clear: keeping the disturbances and interruptions for employees at a minimum or exclude them altogether (e.g. by arranging relocations over the weekend). In case of major relocations, in particular, or those with special requirements, internal facility management departments – as far as available – or external specialists are put in charge, who will usually also undertake the technical planning for the new office location. After finishing the concept for the new office, relocation planning starts with an inventory. Inventory lists are drawn up stating which inventory is to be allocated to which person at which place. In this case, too, simplicity means effectiveness. The decisive virtues to this end are diligence, accuracy and meticulousness: because nobody wants that “Mrs Smith from reception” finds the computer of “Mr Miller from product development” at her workplace.

Time for clearing out.
Moreover, the time of relocation planning is a good opportunity to get rid of old things: you won’t believe how many old inventory – furniture, technology, documents – can be cleared out and disposed of in the course of a relocation.

An upgrade of furniture, e.g. office chairs, can also be an important aspect for adapting to modern workplace ergonomics.

As soon as the timing is fixed and the time for relocation has come, the inventory goes “off to the box”: ordered packing as well as clear labelling and marking ensure a good overview on arrival at the new office, and things can be allocated quickly and correctly.

The most important items for your check list to stay on top of things during a relocation:

  • Scheduling and stipulating dates
  • Informing employees
  • Stocktaking (making an inventory)
  • Deciding about and ordering supplementary    and new furniture and technology
  • Clearing out and disposing of old staff
  • Organizing removal materials and logistics
  • Packing, labelling, and marking
  • Making rooms and paths accessible
  • Specifying responsibilities and availability
  • Transportation
  • Installation and assembly
  • Functionality of furniture, media, and    technology
  • Business as usual

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