Moving Your Office? Use An IT Checklist!

It’s exciting news when you’re ready to move your growing business to a new office. It means you’ve scaled your company to the point where you need more office space so you can expand even further. Every year, thousands of businesses move to a new office, spending in total over $25 billion per year on relocation expenses.

Moving your business operations to a new space can be hectic if you haven’t taken every issue into consideration, particularly when it comes to your IT department. Moving your technology means accessing the new site, making arrangements with current and new service providers and vendors, and making sure your network is running smoothly after the move.

In order to make your relocation stress-free and a success, take the time to evaluate and plan. Understand the risks and develop a plan of action weeks ahead of your scheduled move.

Relocating Your Office Technology

Relocating is not without it’s own risks, such as coming in over the estimated cost. Perhaps the biggest risk of relocation to any company is business downtime when your IT network isn’t up and running immediately after the move. This is why it’s crucial that you have an IT checklist for office relocation and consider working with an IT support partner in London who have the experience to help you plan your relocation.

No matter what type of business you run, a relocation will have an impact on your productivity, both before and after the move. Some businesses will need to shut down completely the day of the move, while others may be able to manage to keep running, even if it’s at half capacity. Moving your IT department can be a delicate matter – you’ll need to shut down connections in your old office and quickly get things up and running in the new location.

Another risk of relocation is customer dissatisfaction. Make sure to give your customers and clients ample information about the move, so they can prepare well in advance without any unexpected inconvenience.

What do you need to consider when relocating your office? Here’s everything you need to plan a successful move.

 

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IT Relocation Planning and Checklist

Use this checklist to overcome the challenges of an office move, especially when it comes to relocating your IT equipment and infrastructure.

Start with pre-planning

There’s not enough that can be said about pre-planning and preparing for the move. If possible, hire a project manager who can coordinate all the details, including relocating your IT department, moving office furniture, and keeping employees up to date on their responsibilities for the move. Other items that should be on the planning list:

  • Inform service providers and vendors, such as your ISP provider, of the upcoming move. If possible, give at least two to three months notification.
  • Discuss network and cable requirements with your IT department and schedule a visit to the new location for a site review.

Evaluate your communication requirements

For most companies, your phone system and energy requirements are critical to the running of your business. Is this the time to upgrade your current phone system? Does the new office have the correct infrastructure in place to support your IT network? Other milestones that should be on your checklist include:

  • Determine how many phone lines your new office space will need.
  • Determine how many power outlets you’ll need to accommodate all your office equipment.
  • Review the available broadband internet speed in the new location.

This is the time to figure out if the new office is going to be able to meet and exceed the requirements for your IT infrastructure.

Evaluate technology requirements

As you’re preparing for the move, it’s a good time to evaluate and review your current office and IT equipment. It may be a good time to update and upgrade, in which case you may be able to install new network devices, such as switches and routers, before the relocation. Your checklist to evaluate your technology should include:

  • Take an inventory of all your equipment.
  • Evaluate each item and determine if it’s suitable for the new office.
  • If you’ve leased equipment, does it need to be returned prior to the move?
  • Decide what can be updated or replaced.
  • Determine if you’ll need additional equipment.
  • Review server room and infrastructure requirements.
  • Label cables, wires, and other IT equipment going with you to the new location.

Plan a new office site visit

Schedule at least one (if not more) site visits to the new location with your project manager. Finalize any modifications or additions you’ll need to make to your IT network. This is also the time to plan the layout of office furniture and equipment, such as photocopiers and printers. Other items to review on a site visit:

  • Confirm where each desk and workstation will be in relation to power outlets and network/phone cables.
  • Make sure the new server room is able to meet all requirements, such as cooling, security, and power.

Secure data

Plan for anything going wrong and your business data being vulnerable and at risk. It helps to be prepared so you can protect your business continuity. Back up all your data, making multiple copies if possible. Store this data in the cloud or at another off-site location to ensure you have easy access in the event of a data loss from the move.

Moving time

Make sure you’ve hired a moving company experienced in office relocation. Many businesses hire more than one mover, with each being responsible for a different aspect of the move. You may hire one mover for your office furniture who disassembles and reassembles furniture in the new office, and use another who handles the relocation of the more sensitive office equipment, including printers and the rest of your IT infrastructure.

Test new office technology

Once you’re in the new office, you’ll need to test your network so it’s fully operational and ready to use without interruption. Here’s what to test:

  • Network infrastructure, including routers, switches, and all hardware.
  • ISP and phone connections.
  • Telephone system for both internal and external calls.
  • Servers and workstations.
  • Photocopiers and printers.
  • Access to internet and intranet.
  • Email, both sending and receiving.

Good planning is the key to a successful move. By using this checklist, you can ensure you’ve got all bases covered before, during, and after your office relocation.

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Roy Castleman
 

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