At Office Changes we understand that relocating your office can be an incredibly stressful experience, with a million and one things to organise whilst, at the same time, maintaining a functional business without disruption. There is also a minefield of legislation to follow and numerous pitfalls that so many organisations fall prey to.
From a base of expertise, we have tried to make things a little easier for you.
So here are our top 5 Office Relocation Mistakes and how to avoid them.
1. Avoiding the Issue: Make sure you leave enough time…
Relocating your office is, even for a smaller entity, a substantial and potentially disruptive exercise. Yet so many companies leave organising their move to the last minute.
This largely places a huge amount of pressure on preparing the new premises adequately and, no matter how good their refurbishment contractor, the design and consultation periods are insufficient, access to longer lead time products is reduced and the project cannot be produced at the highest level because it has been carried out at “breakneck” speed.
Furthermore, overrunning the lease on the existing premises is both expensive and time consuming to resolve.
2. Not Completing a Workplace Audit: Know where you’re starting from…
When relocating not enough emphasis is always given to the opportunity at hand to improve layouts and operational arrangements.
Reviewing your day to day operations, through a detailed workplace audit, is ultimately one of the most important pre-relocation tasks. Not only does it outline a platform from which to prepare the new space from, but it also gives an insight as to how to be more innovative and efficient.
3. Poor Building Selection…
Choosing the wrong building is not easily corrected. It is so much more than finding the correct volume of space or an appropriate location, or building appearance.
A detailed building survey is crucial not only to ascertain the structural integrity and state of repair but also, for example, to evaluate the quality of services (electricity, gas, water etc.) in relation to your organisation’s requirements.
An older building, or one that has not been kept in a good state of repair, will almost certainly not meet all current Building Regulations and should be risk assessed to ensure compliance can be achieved and the safety of staff and visitors maximised.
4. Choosing The Wrong Refurbishment Contractor…
One of the most essential ingredients for a successful relocation and refurbishment of your new premises is down to the contractor employed to manage the move and work involved. Your chosen contractor should be able to demonstrate their competence with similar sized projects and to demonstrate client recommendations, with which you can make direct contact for an independent opinion.
The contractor should be enthusiastic about your project and convey their confidence to meet the brief, project timescales and budgets set. They should also demonstrate their insurances and have an impeccable Health and Safety record.
It is easy for any contractor to promise the world just to get your custom. A good contractor will be able to walk you through the processes involved, take on the project with a “whatever it takes” attitude, but remain realistic and sensible.
A contractor’s mentality can be measured by their approach with snagging. The better contractors have a policy of snagging on route, rather than at the end of the project, to ensure a tidy and immediate handover. You are going to be working alongside your contractor for weeks, maybe months. Make sure you have the time you need to be absolutely comfortable with your selection.
Also related, see our 7 Common Refurbishment Mistakes blog…
5. Forgetting About Dilapidations…
With so much focus on your relocation, remembering that you are likely to be accountable for the dilapidations of your existing premises often gets overlooked.
Typically you will be required to leave your existing premises in the same configuration and condition as you received them. There are however variations through different leased arrangements and so it is important to be clear about your liability so you can plan for your exit accordingly.
Of course, dilapidation works have to be completed prior to the expiry of your lease. To make this possible, if you choose the reduced cost of dealing with this matter yourself, you may need to vacate your existing premises in good time for such works to be conducted.
If you don’t dilapidate yourself the landlord, under the terms of the lease, usually has an all-powerful position to charge all their reasonable costs (always works out to be more) to undertake these works, payable by you in a cash sum. Landlord’s do purposefully hold back on agreeing on a schedule for dilapidations for this reason. It is imperative therefore to decide early on if you will undertake the dilapidations work yourself, schedule your relocation accordingly and begin negotiations well in advance of your lease expiry and relocation date.
If you have any questions or need any help with your relocation, or refurbishment, give us a call and we would be delighted to help: Call – 01444 474278 or email us – firstname.lastname@example.org