How do I choose a reputable office moving company?

When the time comes to move office there are many factors to consider. It is likely you have already found new premises but how do you go about moving all your staff and kit without considerable disruption to your business?

It might seem feasible to do a small office move yourself but it’s nearly always better to leave it to the experts.  Professional office movers can pack your equipment to export standard ensuring it all arrives safely at the new destination on schedule and with minimal downtime.

In this article, we’ll talk you through the key points to consider when planning your office move. We’ll tell you what to look for and what to avoid so that your business relocation goes smoothly.

1. Always use an accredited mover

Sounds obvious right? You’ve either spent ages building up your business or you’ve been tasked with managing your company relocation so why would you trust any old man & van to carry it out?  You’d be surprised how many companies fall at the first hurdle and entrust their move to moving companies who simply are not qualified to handle the job or worse, disappear when the going gets tough. We’ve lost count of the number of businesses who have turned to us to pick up the pieces of a failed and expensive office move.  So our first tip is to always choose an accredited mover.

There are numerous companies claiming to provide office removal services but the quality can vary greatly.  The British Association of Removers has over 50 Commercial Office Moving Partners.  To avoid costly mistakes, and to have an experienced partner to turn to in the event something goes wrong, we strongly advise using a Commercial Moving Group (CMG) Member.  A CMG member will have the experience to help you plan your move, ensure minimal downtime and disruption for your business.

Check Certifications

Ask if they hold the BS 8522 Commercial Moving Standard. This should be the minimum certification they hold.

BS8522

Check Availability

The most experienced office moving companies can be booked up for weeks or even months in advance. If your office must be relocated on a particular date and there is zero flexibility check that potential movers can adhere to your schedule. There is no point going further through a selection process only to discover your date is not available.

Check Working Hours

Many office moves need to take place either partially or completely out of office hours or during weekends ready for business at the start of the following week.Some companies only work Monday to Friday 9am-5pm so may not be suitable for your particular office relocation.

2. Get a few quotes

When you begin gathering the information it helps to compare a few quotes.  Whilst price is an important factor it is crucial that you compare like-for-like services. A low price can be enticing but are you getting a top-quality service and does the quote cover everything you need?

Often companies provide low quotes but then add on a number of extras during the move leading a much higher final cost than expected.  You don’t want any nasty surprises after your move so make sure your quote is clear and that all costs are explained.  If you aren’t sure whether something is included then speak to the removal company before the move to get everything ironed out.

3. Ask to see recent testimonials and case studies

Office removals can vary greatly from a small two-person office move to full-scale corporate relocations involving hundreds of employees, IT equipment and other furniture.

Whilst a moving company may have experience moving other types of commercial business, make sure they have moved a business or office like yours and have the skills to do it again. Moving companies that have done similar jobs successfully will usually like to talk about them and many will write commercial case studies which can provide great insight as to the quality of their moving service and ability to take on and complete your project successfully.

These days, most removal companies will have customer reviews on their website. Also, check third-party review sites like Trustpilot and Google for recent customer testimonials.  Don’t be put off by the occasional bad review. No business can operate with entirely positive feedback and it is how the company deals with issues that set apart the professional removing companies from those less reputable.

Our Customers Say

Absolutely fantastic work & customer service by all the crew

Ayse Veli - The Labour Party (Office Move)

It is a rare pleasure to be able to provide a wholly positive report for any supplier. We chose you because your intelligent and proactive approach seemed a world apart from the standard approach in the removal and shipping sector and gave us faith that you would over-deliver. Thankfully, our judgement was spot on

Sebastian Gray, Founder, IT Lab (Office Move)

4. Check whether you have a dedicated commercial move manager

Check that you have an experienced commercial move manager running your office move.

They will be your point of contact throughout the move process and will help you plan and execute the project successfully.

If you have any concerns regarding certain aspects of your move discuss these with your move manager ahead of your move date so that they can plan accordingly.

5. Check you have the right insurance in place

It is even more critical for a commercial move that your removal company has the right insurance in place.

You will want to make sure that every possible eventuality is covered throughout the move so your mover should have public liability, employee liability and goods in transit insurance.

You may need additional insurance so always speak to your moving company about what is and is not covered. Don’t wait until something goes wrong to inquire about insurance and don’t assume you are covered under another policy you might already have.

6. Be clear - Are packing and unpacking included?

When you choose a CMG Member your mover will be able to provide you with all the boxes, crates and packing materials you will need.  However, you should be clear as to whether a full packing and unpacking service is included in your quote. You don’t want any nasty surprises on move day.

We always advise leaving packing and unpacking to the professionals, particularly for a commercial move, but if you do plan to do it yourself your mover will need to drop off all your materials before the move allowing enough time for you to complete the packing.

7. Ensure a smooth and seamless IT integration

The majority of office moves involve handling and moving IT equipment.  With most businesses relying heavily on this equipment it is essential that this part of the move goes smoothly.

Check that your mover is experienced in handling similar equipment and understand how they plan to manage the move of servers and data racks if applicable.  Often removal companies will partner with specialist firms who take care of the decommissioning and recommissioning of equipment.

8. Check your moving company can dispose of unwanted IT equipment or furniture

If you require your moving company to dispose of any unwanted furniture or IT equipment then discuss this with them before the move.

A CMG Member can advise you on best practices which can either be to re-sell, recycle responsibly or donate your unwanted goods.

9. Check your moving company can offer storage

An increasing number of office moves require storage either before the move or during a refurbishment or restructure.  Check whether your moving company offers commercial storage.

Typically removal and storage companies offer self-storage and container storage depending on the length of time you need to store your items and the access you need to them.

10. Check the procedures in place should there be any problems

A first-class mover will have documented processes in place to guarantee business continuity in the event that something goes wrong with your move.

Speak to your mover and understand how they go about fixing the small issues that might occur right through to a full disaster recovery situation.

When you choose an experienced moving company for your office move there aren’t many situations they won’t have seen and dealt with before.

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