In the small business world, workflow interruptions can be detrimental, which can make moving offices more stressful than moving homes. With so many moving parts, it’s easy for important tasks to fall through the cracks. While it’s difficult to successfully change offices without any interruptions to day-to-day operations, small business owners can utilize a few tips, tricks and tools to minimize disruptions.
1) Switch to Online Billing and Invoicing
Forwarding mail through Canada Post and registering the new address with the CRA are important first steps, but the best way to ensure nothing important is lost in the shuffle is to take as much as possible out of the physical world, and put it online. After all, each switch to online billing is one more important document that is guaranteed not to get lost in the mail. Small businesses can also make switching offices that much less stressful by moving invoicing and other services online as well.
2) Use Mobile and Cloud Technologies to Continue Working Remotely
Just because the desks and chairs are in boxes and moving trucks doesn’t mean the modern workplace needs to halt its operations. Before the first box is packed, be sure to provide your employees with smartphones and cloud-based tools they need to work remotely. This can include CRM and accounting software like Salesforce, file sharing tools like DropBox and Google Drive, or collaboration software like Microsoft Office 365.
3) Remember that Timing is Key
While there’s never a good time to increase the risk of workflow interruptions, there are certainly better times than others. Small business owners will know when that time is, depending on the nature of their business. It’s important to start thinking about moving long before that off-season or pre-holiday slowdown provides a ripe opportunity to switch locations. Begin informing clients, partners and suppliers of your plans approximately three months before your next prime moving opportunity. This provides them ample time to prepare themselves for a slower response time.
4) Back Up Everything, Twice
Before attempting a major office change, ensure that all of your company’s sensitive information is backed up in multiple locations. Should anything be lost in the shuffle, it’s important to have multiple copies of vital information. Furthermore, by backing up your data on the cloud through services like Bell Data Protect, employees can continue to have access to files and documents during the interim period.
5) Use The Move to Improve Productivity
It’s rare that a fast moving startup gets the chance to slow down and look around, but a move can be the perfect opportunity to take stock of the company and consider ways to make it more efficient. Whether it’s through a new seating arrangement or Internet provider, the best time to make subtle changes that improve efficiency and quality of life for employees is during a major change like an office move.
While moving offices can be stressful, small businesses can minimize workflow interruptions, update various processes and be more productive in their new location by taking advantage of technologies that enable a seamless transition. It is also important for small businesses to take the time to consider the opportunities a move can provide, ensuring continued success at their new location.
And when looking at service providers, use one who understands the challenges of moving a business and that can provide flexible service options. Bell is one such provider, with a dedicated website for moving businesses available at bell.ca/businessmove.
This article is presented by small business solutions from Bell Canada.