Like almost every industry, the legal profession has encountered numerous difficulties during the global pandemic brought about by COVID-19. Some of these challenges include transitioning to remote work, converting to remote litigation, and facing higher competition for talent.
So you’re moving offices?
With a couple of decades experience in office relocation and office fitout projects, we’ve seen the things people tend to forget about.
We feel compelled to share this information, as we see so many simple things overlooked, as outlined in the list below.
I think most people know that phones are a critical business communication device today.
Yet we see it very often, that the phone contractor is the last person to be called, and suddenly companies have moved in and are still waiting for Telstra to connect their service weeks later.
It’s critical that your phone system is thought of early in the relocation process.
The simplest type of phone to install is a cloud hosted system, that way you don’t need to worry about the Telstra connection at all, you just need a broadband connection.
This is closely related to phones, however, it is a separate issue that many comapnies overlook.
An internet connection, be it fibre or other can take up to 4 weeks to commission.
On top of this is the 4 week embargo on all internet lines over the Christmas period, so it is vital that your internet requirement is booked well in advance, because as with the phone system, you could be caught without the internet.
To many this may seem obvious, yet we have seen it all too often, that tenants overlook their make-good requirement. Instead they settle for a cash negotiation, which is usually more expensive than actually undertaking the make-good themselves.
While it may be more inconvenient to actually undertake the make good, thinking about it earlier will put you in a better negotiating position and could save thousands of dollars.
While most landlords won’t accept a lease finalisation without an insurance policy, again, it is usually only remembered at the last minute.
To ensure you get the best protection for the best price, it is essential that you begin talks with your preferred insurance broker or company as soon as a location is settled on.
Very few of our clients actually undertake a genuine storage audit.
This involves analysing your current and future storage needs to ensure you are not short on storage space, nor do you end up with too much.
While a lot of clutter builds up over the course of a lease, a company needs to be realistic about its hard storage solution.
Communicating Relocation to Clients
Communicating to clients your office relocation is a nice way to contact you clients and keep them interested in your business.
However, it is also essential to make sure you don’t have clients turning up on your old doorstep, or documents and parcels arriving at your old address.
Existing Amenities Contracts
If you’ve remembered most of the earlier points, I think this will be where you slip up.
This is your cleaning contract, your water cooler contract, your rubbish removal contract, your electrical contract, your daily doughnut delivery contract…the list goes on.
What invariably happens in these situations, is that the people who arrange these contracts overlook the upcoming lease expiry, and find themselves with months or years remaining on the contract in the current location.
Changing location evokes a service fee and cancelling a contract invokes a termination fee, so either way you will be worse off.
The earlier these contracts are identified the more time you have to negotiate your way out of extra charges.
This list is not exhaustive by any means, however it is a start.
If you tick these boxes, you should be safe, however the key is to hold a relocation strategy session to ensure you do not miss anything.
The concept of flexible working is here to stay. As a result of COVID-19, every organisation has been thrust into a position where they will