By Dave Clifton
Planning on moving to new facilities? Need to coordinate better mobility between departments? Relocation management software is the answer. But it’s not enough to have the software. Facility managers and move stakeholders need to understand how to use it effectively. Software can guide you through all phases of a move, and it needs to offer cohesion from start to finish—whether it takes a few minutes or a few weeks to complete. Supportive software makes moves easier, and it is enabled by stakeholders who know how to use it.
Start with formalized training
The best relocation management software will come with training opportunities from the developer. This is vital to understanding the software, its features, and the capabilities it offers during different relocation scenarios. There’s no better opportunity than learning from the organization that designed the software.
Start with tutorials and modules. These are often designed to cover specific features and scenarios, and serve as a fundamental tour of the software. Then, move into more advanced training, if offered. This might take the form of a YouTube series, live training exercises, webinars, and more. These more immersive sessions are ideal for drilling down into more complex uses and capabilities.
If offered, these training opportunities need to be the first course of action. Facility managers and anyone else using the software to facilitate relocation should prioritize formalized training.
Familiarize yourself (and stakeholders) with features
Beyond formal training, it’s smart for FMs to poke around and get to know the software—it’s interface, features, menus, integrations, and more. Familiarity beyond the formalities breeds a deeper understanding of how to use the software effectively for specific purposes.
Stakeholders should also get familiar with the software—especially if they’re involved in the relocation. This is much less intimidating in software that offers user permissions groups and usership tiers. For example, distant stakeholders might have access to read-only floor plans and checklists, which are easy to explore and get familiar with. Other groups, like department heads, may need to get accustomed to using different features to execute a move.
Set usership tiers and permissions, and encourage anyone using the software to get comfortable with the UI. This will make using it second-nature and less intimidating.
Optimize the potential of integrations
Integrations are the foundation for optimization. Move management software that connects to other common workplace technologies makes it more useful and accessible in an everyday setting.
For instance, the ability to send employee desk assignments through Slack saves the hassle of orchestrating an email chain. Likewise, directory integration makes it easy for employees to find each other, even after a major workplace shakeup. The simplicity of many integrations is what makes them powerful. The workplace touches every facet of work; move software needs to integrate with as many of those facets as possible.
Identify uses-cases and scenarios
Why did you invest in relocation software? Chances are, it’s because your workplace is either getting ready to move, is constantly in flux, or recently went through a move that caused major disruption. In any case, it’s important to identify opportunities to use it in the future.
This means looking at how specific software features link up with certain situations. For example, you might create pre-made checklists for departmental moves. These checklists ensure every move follows due processes, so as to not forget anything that might creep up later. It might also mean establishing rules for employee relocations. Every time an employee moves, X, Y, and Z triggers ensure a smooth transition. Break it down into as many scenarios as possible. Examples include:
- Employee-specific moves
- Group moves
- Departmental moves
- Temporary moves
- Location-based moves
The more applicable move scenarios you identify and plan for, the better-equipped you’ll be when the time arises. Then, it’s easy to pick up relocation software and oversee the process.
Create processes and automate
The final way to capitalize on relocation software is to automate—which blends into identifying use-case scenarios. When you understand the challenges of a specific move, you can automate efforts to avoid them.
Consider something like a workplace mobility program. As employees hop from desk to desk, facility managers need a way to keep tabs on them—and automate the process. These types of simple moves benefit from rules-based governance. Employees from Group A can only book desks in Zones 1-4. Slack room requests validate against the hoteling schedule before returning an “occupied” or “vacant” status. Simple rules like these and dozens of others put bumpers on relocations, to make them seamless.
FMs and software operators should explore process standardization and automation wherever possible. This becomes even more important as you explore integrations.
Relocation software makes moving easier
Whether it’s a departmental shuffle or the relocation of the entire company to new facilities, moving is disruptive. Inherently so. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make it quicker, easier, and more organized. Controlling these variables limits the disruption and any aftershocks that come from relocation. The best way to minimize the negatives of a move is to maximize control over it.
Relocation management software is the answer. But like all software, it needs a qualified, competent operator at the helm. Facility managers who take the time to learn and get familiar with move management software will find themselves with more control over the variables that dictate relocation—and the power to make it smoother.
Keep reading: How to Implement Move Management Software