Whether you’re expanding your business or relocating to a more desirable area, moving offices is an exciting time for any company. However, you’ll need careful planning and coordination to ensure a smooth transition.
One crucial aspect of any office move is your IT infrastructure, which is often overlooked in the chaos of packing. You should talk to your IT provider as soon as you finalize your plans to move so they have time to help you with a seamless transfer.
Unfortunately, many companies wait too long to get in touch with their IT provider, which can lead to frustrating downtime and even delay your move. Here are the top 10 reasons why you should involve your IT provider while planning your move and how they can help you facilitate an easy transition.
Your IT provider will help you conduct an in-depth infrastructure assessment of your new office to make sure that it fits your needs. This needs to be done well before your move so that you can retrofit the office to accommodate your technology.
Many executives incorrectly assume that all modern offices have the internet circuits that they need, but unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. For example, you may need a fiber optic internet connection, but the office you’re moving to doesn’t support it.
In this case, you’ll need to take time to figure out your next steps. Can you convert to the correct type of internet circuits, and is your internet provider able to move to your new location? Or will you need to adjust your system to fit this new infrastructure?
Network connectivity is just one of the things that your IT provider will look at during an infrastructure assessment. They’ll also need to look at the office’s available power supply and cooling systems to make sure they’re satisfactory. If they aren’t, you’ll need to determine how to upgrade the infrastructure before you move in to ensure that you’re ready to start work on time.
When your organization moves, you’ll likely need to reconfigure your network for the new space. Your IT provider will be able to help you create a network that fits your needs so you don’t lose any time once you move into the new space.
As with all aspects of your move, the network design and set-up will take time, which is why it’s so important to get in touch with your IT provider as quickly as possible. Proper network configuration is particularly important to ensure proper cybersecurity as well as optimal network performance.
Before your move, your IT provider will help you plan your network design, and once you move, they will help you install and configure both your hardware and software. Your provider can also help you connect all of your devices to the network, which will help you save time during the stressful moving process.
Data loss is one of the biggest risks to keep in mind when planning a move to a new office. Data loss can devastate your organization, and it can be very costly to repair as well. Your IT provider will help you plan a safe, secure data migration and make sure that all of your data is backed up in the process.
To do this, your IT provider will start by making an inventory of all of your devices and IT equipment that needs to be migrated, as well as all of your organization’s data. They’ll assess your current data backup strategy to make sure it’s effective and make any necessary adjustments to support your new migration. This is particularly important for teams storing heavy datasets on-premise.
The data migration process is complex, and you’ll want to make sure that all of your data is still structured and organized after the move so your team can access it quickly. They’ll also ensure that your data is protected during the move and that hackers cannot access it.
Your technology and equipment are some of your most valuable assets, and you’ll want to make sure that they aren’t compromised during your move. In the chaos of a move, it’s not uncommon for things to get lost, so you’ll need to secure your hardware beforehand to ensure that everything is safe.
Your IT provider will also help you decide how to safely pack all of your hardware to prevent damage. They can also recommend safe transport options and work with you when choosing a moving company. Some types of hardware are sensitive and need to be transported in certain conditions, which is why it’s so important to get your IT provider’s input on this.
Taking inventory is also a good opportunity to assess your equipment and determine what is working well and what might need to be upgraded. A move is a great opportunity to upgrade any outdated equipment in your inventory.
One of the biggest challenges of any office move is preventing downtime from interfering with your operations. The average move takes anywhere from three months to one year, and you’ll need to keep your organization up and running during this time.
You’ll need to make sure that your team still has the technology they need to keep customers happy and stay on top of routine operations. Even a few hours of system downtime can be expensive, so planning your move ahead of time will help you save on these costs.
Work with your IT provider to determine the best way to minimize downtime during your move. Using cloud-based services for your most important operations is ideal, because you’ll still have access to them even when your local office network isn’t available. Your IT provider may also recommend redundant internet connections so that the network never goes out.
It’s also important to make sure you have a contingency plan just in case you do experience downtime. Talk to your employees about steps to take if the network does go out, and encourage them to get their most important work done before the move starts.
Cybersecurity considerations should be at the top of your list when planning a move to a new office. Cyber threats continue to become more and more sophisticated, and you’ll need to take steps to ensure that your data isn’t vulnerable to outside threats.
Ideally, your company will already have a cybersecurity strategy that you can bring to your new office with you. However, now is the perfect time for your IT provider to conduct a thorough assessment and recommend improvements.
It’s also very important to conduct a cybersecurity assessment of your new office and make sure it will meet your standards both in terms of physical security and digital security.
You may need to install access control systems in your new office to limit which employees can access on-prem servers. You’ll also need to consider the layout and setup of your new office to determine where to safely store your technology.
When planning your move, you’ll want to make sure compliance isn’t neglected, and this is another area where your IT provider can help. A lack of compliance at any point during your move could result in fines and other consequences, even if it’s only for a short period of time.
There are many federal, state, and local laws regarding things like data privacy and consent for your customers. Additionally, many industries have their own forms of governance as well.
In particular, this type of move affects companies in the medical, engineering, manufacturing, architectural, and construction fields the most, but any organization could encounter these challenges while planning a move.
You’ll need to put together a strategy to make sure your new offices are fully compliant from day one. It’s easy to miss these compliance concerns when you’re focused on planning a move efficiently, which is why it’s so important to have your IT provider’s perspective on this topic.
A move is a fresh start, and it’s a great time to re-evaluate your current hardware and software needs to ensure they’re still a good fit for your organization.
Once you’re set up in your new space and focused on day-to-day operations, you may not want to make any major changes, which is why it’s best to think about this as you’re planning your move.
Many companies are moving towards cloud-based operations and away from on-premise solutions. If that’s the case for you, you may have unnecessary hardware that you can get rid of.
You also might opt to upgrade outdated pieces of hardware to increase your performance levels. Work with your IT provider to dispose of old hardware safely and make sure that your data isn’t compromised in the process.
In addition to upgrading your hardware, your move is also a good time to re-evaluate your software. Many organizations have dozens or even hundreds of software subscriptions, but do they really need all of them? In 2021, the average organization used 110 SaaS applications, and that number continues to rise.
Evaluate each piece of software you use to make sure it is cost-effective and provides real value for your organization. Eliminate programs you don’t use anymore, and look into competitor options to make sure you’re still getting the best deals.
If you plan on implementing new technologies or reorganizing your networks, you’ll need to make sure that your team is properly trained. If they’re unclear on how to use your new systems, productivity will go down, and you’ll spend more time putting out fires than tackling your to-do list.
IT providers are well-equipped to provide training on new technologies. Work with them to schedule training sessions for everyone who will be affected by the changes. Ideally, you’ll want to offer at least some training before the move so that your team can hit the ground running in the new office.
Additionally, your IT provider will be able to offer ongoing support for your team as they adjust to this transition. Make sure that your employees know how to get in touch with IT if they encounter any technical problems throughout the move.
The sooner you communicate with your IT team about any problems, the faster they will be able to fix it.
Your IT provider will be one of your most important partners as you adjust to your new office. No matter how well you plan ahead, you’re still likely to encounter some challenges once you’ve arrived in your new office.
Your IT provider should be on hand to help you through any issues with connectivity and security. If you need to reorganize or upgrade your systems, they will be on hand to help you through that process as well.
The sooner you let your IT provider know about your office move, the more they will be able to help you through the transition. Ideally, you should give your provider at least six-months’ notice to help you prepare. This ensures that everyone involved has enough time to plan and troubleshoot comfortably.
If you don’t get in touch with your IT provider quickly enough, not only will the move be more stressful, but it’s also going to be more expensive. This is because you’ll be spending money on quick fixes.
You’ll also slow your staff down, which will impact your customers’ experience. In the worst-case scenario, your phone and internet service may go down during the move, making it impossible for customers to reach you.