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How to Organize Your Office for a Move ?

Whether it's across the hall, across town or across the country, a
smooth office move requires plenty of planning. Start early, keep
detailed to-do lists and--to keep your frayed nerves from unraveling--
envision a tropical vacation once the move is complete. Until
then, the primary goal is to minimize downtime as much as possible.

Difficulty: Moderately Easy Instructions

1 Plan a Move.

2 Interview and hire movers. Set up a timeline for major tasks and communicate it clearly to everyone involved. Obtain any necessary permits as well as insurance quotes for the new space.

3 Inspect the new space and determine the furniture needs and office layouts, as well as locations for any additional electrical outlets and communication connections that need to be installed.

4 Inventory your present office's contents. Be selective about what you move; donate or sell items that won't work well in the new space. Set a budget for additional furnishings and equipment needed. See 1 Get Organized.

5 Apply for new phone and fax numbers as well as Internet access. If you'll be keeping your current phone system, hire an expert to debug it after the move.

6 Order updated letterhead and business cards as well as changeof- address mailers and checks that have the new address printed on them. Update the company Web site. Order keys and access cards, and make sure the security system will be installed and working before the actual move.

7 Set aside the last day before the movers come as packing day, when the whole staff packs up the office. Ask each employee to make a master list of how many boxes she has and what each box contains; she should then give this list to the moving coordinator.

8 Schedule a staff orientation for the new quarters. Have new phone numbers ready to assign and new keys or access cards ready to distribute.

Tips & Warnings
Schedule a purge-and-shred day shortly before the move to encourage employees to leave behind no-longerneeded papers.

Schedule the move for a Thursday and Friday so you can use the weekend to get up and running.

Work hand-in-glove with your information technology team from the outset to create a seamless transition of servers and all other computer equipment. Take advantage of the opportunity to upgrade and plan for future growth in your systems.

Prepare visual aids for moving day, including floor plans, positioning labels for furniture and equipment, and directional signs for movers.
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