The move team philosophy should recognize that employees must be allies in the move process. No one knows the unique needs of a department better than those who work in it, so it’s essential to establish a team of move coordinators from each area slated to relocate.
The move coordinator concept is used as a team building process, and is one of the first and most important steps of a relocation effort. In addition to serving as vital sources of information, the move coordinators assure employee involvement and communication.
Move coordinators, who are assigned the task as an added responsibility to their regular jobs, identify the things that will be impacted by the relocation and how their departments will be affected in the new environment. They also ensure all necessary communication regarding the physical move is directed toward their departments and assist in the implementation of the move plan.
An actual job description, outlining the move coordinators’ responsibilities, is sent to senior managers who, in turn, select appropriate individuals to participate. The number of coordinators selected is based on department size (the number of people and amount of space involved) and the needs of the department being moved. As a result, some move coordinators represent one large complex area, while others represent several smaller departments.
There are no requirements regarding the level of employee chosen to participate. A move coordinator can be an administrative assistant or a senior manager. The primary prerequisite is the person must be enthusiastic, resourceful, communicative and willing to work. In addition, he or she must be able to maintain regular job responsibilities while working on the relocation project.
Most companies are sold on the team concept and organize move coordinators into two groups: business units and facility support. Through this structure, companies delegate the various tasks that will help accomplish the relocation.
To that end, it’s a good idea to hire a relocation management firm to work with the move coordinators to assemble – in great detail – pertinent information about things that will impact a department during a move. For example, a department that does business with the west coast cannot shut down communication equipment until after the close of business – west coast time. The controller’s area is swamped at the end of the month and couldn’t possibly move at that time. The bank’s trading room could lose hundreds of thousands of dollars if it lost communication capabilities for even an hour.
Move coordinators become a crucial part of the move team – ensuring success, providing valuable information and acting as a conduit for communications. One last thing – make sure you reward and thank these team members.
This downloadable Relocation 101 infographic is available for more information on the move process.
Helen Dennis is the President and co-founder of 300 Decisions, a strategic, full-service business relocation management company specializing in helping organizations transition into new work environments without disrupting business operations.