Relocating your company’s office is unlike any other kind of moving. From planning to unpacking everyone’s individual desk contents, it all must happen with little or n disruption ti the day-to-day operations of the office. When you think about that, it seems almost impossible.
Of course, there will be some time spent by everyone due to the move, but all the work needs to continue to be completed if your company is to avoid any issues with customers, suppliers or any other part of the business.
One of the issues that usually ends up needing more attention than you thought (by the way, everything will need more attention than you thought!) is managing the needs and concerns of your employees. From having problems with the new location, to not getting the workstation by the window that they have now, your employees are disrupted as much as any other aspect of your business by a company relocation.
We’ve told you before about the importance of getting your employees involved when moving your office. If you want to know why, put yourself in their position. A new location means they may need to change personal schedules, adjust to new surroundings, perhaps work with unfamiliar faces, and so on. It can all add to their stress in ways that even they might not be aware of.
That stress can reduce productivity and increase resistance to the move. Simply keeping them fully informed, and asking for their feedback can be a vent for any misunderstanding or feelings of powerlessness over a major change in their lives.
But they aren’t the only reasons for getting your employees more engaged in a office relocation.
Think about it. Your equipment, files, furniture, whatever, will all work in the new office precisely the same as they did in the old office.æ But for each employee, a lot will change due to the move. The more attention you pay to their needs and concerns, the less impact the move will have on them, and your business.
The sooner you engage with your staff, the better. If the move has an impact on them, the more time they will have to adjust and work out any issues.
You have reasons for making the move, but employees are probably not aware of them. Whether your business is growing, or the new office will have lots more space, or will be in a great location close to amenities, or any other advantage/reason for the move, should be communicated clearly across all the channels of communication you have with your staff.
Communicate in Small Groups
In addition to company-wide announcements, start discussions about the move, and any concerns employees have, in small groups of 12 or fewer. It’s a more intimate way of engaging with them that will make it easier for anyone to come forward, if they feel the need.
If an employee has a legitimate concern about the move, then try to work with them towards potential solutions. Would starting at an earlier or later time make things better?
Get Them Involved
Every employee brings their own unique experiences and talents to everything they do. So why not apply that to your move.
One area where employees can be particularly helpful is in planning the new office layout. No one knows your existing layout, and its advantages and disadvantages, better than your employees, so they are an excellent resource for planning your new space to work more efficiently.
Yes, you have a lot to plan and do for your office relocation. But the sooner you think about and engage your employees, the less impact the move will have on your most important asset.