Moving offices is hideously expensive and can cause major disruption to business resulting in loss of revenue, key staff or even customers. A refurbishment programme can avoid many of these problems if managed well. Here are some Dos and Don’ts to bear in mind when approaching a refurb project:

  1. Do put plenty of time and effort into deciding what you want from the exercise. Create some clear (and realistic) objectives that will deliver benefits that are worth all the hassle.
  2. Don’t appoint just anyone to manage the project. It’s going to be a time consuming, difficult and crucial job. Get the best person you can.
  3. Do talk to your landlord about what you can and can’t do to their building. If you don’t you may be in breach. Understand your dilapidation obligations.
  4. Don’t forget to set up communication links with all the other stakeholders involved. Those being moved and those affected by the move including your neighbours.
  5. Do draw up a detailed project management process including roles, responsibilities, plan, budget, change processes etc.
  6. Don’t appoint cowboy builders f you want a professional job. Take time to select the right partners and look at similar work they have done.
  7. Do involve specialists where necessary especially on Health & Safety, IT, Planning and so on. The refurb probably comes under the CDM regulations. Make sure you are compliant.
  8. Do carefully study what you’ve got and how you use it. Consider all the alternatives and try to think ahead. Take the opportunity to clear out the junk.
  9. Don’t forget to keep good records. Take photos before, during & after. You may need them in the event of any dispute
  10. Don’t expect everything to go smoothly. Things will go wrong. Anticipate them. Prepare contingency plans