All too often, we get frantic phone calls from clients on moving day requesting help because they forgot to plan for some of the most important resources required to keep their office running. Don’t get us wrong, we’re more than happy to help out in  a pinch, but we hate to see any of our clients experience down time, especially if it could have been avoided.

Whether you’re moving to another floor in your building or down the street, planning appropriately can ensure that your office move goes smoothly. Here are a few things you should know when preparing for a move.

1) Notify your Internet & phone vendors

The most important items that must be addressed beforehand during a business move are the Internet and Phone system. The two services need to be scheduled and installed (at least the cabling backbone) in advance of the move day. The initial call to the service provider(s) will need to take place several weeks (if not over a month) in advance as they will schedule their technicians to be at the new location to install/verify their cabling to the building. If this call does not take place with advanced notice, the service provider will not be able to guarantee install by moving day. The ISP will need to verify if the firm’s public IP addresses will be changing and this will need to be addressed in both the firm’s networking hardware. On top of that, if the firm hosts email internally with an Exchange server, DNS records for the firm’s domain will need to be updated as well.

2) Make sure the offices & cubicles are wired properly

While the Internet and phone providers ensure service to the building, they are not responsible for wiring each office and cubicle. It’s possible that the building will already be wired with patched down cables at all essential locations, but this will need to be verified beforehand and if lines do need to be run technician will need to be scheduled. Accellis can provide these services, and it does not need to be scheduled as far in advance as the Internet and phone services, but some lead time (a week or two) is needed.

3) Schedule movers for your computers & servers

Is the firm capable of unplugging and moving their own computer equipment? For firms of more than 5 users (or if there are servers involved), it may be best to use a moving (or IT services) company for this process. Workstations will need to be disconnected properly as well as physically moved and re-installed in the new space (and test connectivity, etc.). The firm’s networking and server hardware will need follow the same process (including server(s), switch(es), UPS unit(s), router(s), etc.).

4) Have backup plan

Be prepared for just in case something doesn’t go according to your plan. For example, it’s possible that email may not be online and working when expected (one common example is the public IP address changing), it’s nice to have a backup plan. For example, firms that utilize Accellis’ Managed Spam system will have an intermediary between the Internet and their internal system that can store emails temporarily until the server comes back online. This provides an additional safeguard to remove some stress from all of the moving pieces and parts of a move.

5) Keep your IT provider in the loop

Make sure your IT provider is in the loop as soon as you know you’re moving so that they can make preparations and schedule appropriate resources to help you.